Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Record - Work it Out - *then* listen back

Here's a new sequence I've tried in a few lessons.

  1. The student plays while I record.
  2. Before we listen to the recording, I point out the detail I wish to focus on and I get them to notice and improve.
  3. Then, we listen to the recording.

The change is that steps 2 and 3 are a swap from the old way which was: Record-Listen-Work it Out.

Why do I like this new approach? As we work out the detail in question, the student's ear becomes more focused.

One example might be the tendency to "twah" during a moving legato line. They're doing it, but at first they don't hear it.

I focus in on a small section and "take out the magnifying glass" to help them hear that elusive "twah" habit. Once their ear is sensitized to it (and they're playing it better), I play back the recording and they can really hear the problem clearly.

Anyway, for you teachers out there, it's a sequence that may seem counter-intuitive but I've seen some nice results.