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About that Log Book #2750555
07/10/18 08:24 AM
07/10/18 08:24 AM
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 106
Southeast USA
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Progman Offline OP
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I've read a lot of threads (even going back years) gleaning lessons learned and general information about learning piano. I have never seen any mention of a log book. At my first lesson my teacher told me to get a log book and bring it to lesson every week. Being the teacher's pet I am, I put 'Volume 1' on it smile During the lesson I play my half dozen or so exercises/songs - and she writes in the log book my assignment for next week - she typically has me keep practicing a couple of the songs with some prescribed focus. Then we will look ahead over the next set and she will put in the log book what to add to my practice. So every practice session during the week, i open the log book and go through what she wrote down. I have also taken to making my own comments/questions in the log book during the week - so at the beginning of the next lesson, we go over these. Great process - do/did you have a lesson log book?


Progman
1997 Baldwin 'Classic' Console
Kawai ES100
Alfreds bk 1 + Teacher
Long Live ELP
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Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2750562
07/10/18 08:54 AM
07/10/18 08:54 AM
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 130
Liverpool, NY
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pathguy Offline
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Originally Posted by Progman
I've read a lot of threads (even going back years) gleaning lessons learned and general information about learning piano. I have never seen any mention of a log book. At my first lesson my teacher told me to get a log book and bring it to lesson every week. Being the teacher's pet I am, I put 'Volume 1' on it smile During the lesson I play my half dozen or so exercises/songs - and she writes in the log book my assignment for next week - she typically has me keep practicing a couple of the songs with some prescribed focus. Then we will look ahead over the next set and she will put in the log book what to add to my practice. So every practice session during the week, i open the log book and go through what she wrote down. I have also taken to making my own comments/questions in the log book during the week - so at the beginning of the next lesson, we go over these. Great process - do/did you have a lesson log book?

That's a pretty neat idea. My teacher is pretty relaxed, and at the end of our lesson says "go as far as you can in the book." Sometimes I'll do a lot, and sometimes not so much. Since he also gives me songs to work on or build on from previous lessons, those are what I tend to focus on because they are more interesting musically. Having a log book would give me more discipline for sure.

Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2750566
07/10/18 09:21 AM
07/10/18 09:21 AM
Joined: Oct 2010
Posts: 11,132
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bennevis Offline
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Originally Posted by Progman
Great process - do/did you have a lesson log book?

I had one for the first eight years of lessons whilst doing grade exams.

My teacher wrote in it what she wanted me to achieve by the next lesson, and any specific technical problems that I needed to work at, together with how they were to be overcome as a reminder of what she'd gone through with me during the lesson. They were invaluable to me as a student, as I was continually presented with new challenges and my memory wasn't of the best........


"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."
Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2750586
07/10/18 11:01 AM
07/10/18 11:01 AM
Joined: Feb 2015
Posts: 1,582
Warsaw, Poland
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Warsaw, Poland
I record all my lessons (my teacher is OK with that) and listen back afterwards. Not only can I review what my teacher said and not miss anything because I can pause and rewind at will, but I can also hear him demonstrate and myself play. It's great for review and it's a great motivator when I listen back to lessons from 2 years ago and hear all the progress I made.

As for logging, I log my practice time for every piece and keep track of it in Excel. It's more for knowing how much time I spent on each piece and to keep track of which scales I practiced (so I can choose a different key the next day).


[Linked Image]
Working on:
Bach French Suite no. 2 mvt. 4
Debussy Doctor Gradus ad Parnassum
Field Nocturne no. 10
Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2750607
07/10/18 01:22 PM
07/10/18 01:22 PM
Joined: Jan 2018
Posts: 1,114
In the Ozarks of Missouri
NobleHouse Offline
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In the Ozarks of Missouri
My son's piano teachers had him do log books and also had me sign off that he had completed his assignments. That was from 4 years old until about 15 years old. After that he keeps his own logbook.

Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2750613
07/10/18 01:55 PM
07/10/18 01:55 PM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 554
Kitsap County, WA
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I keep a journal, which I guess is a log book, but not quite as formal. My teacher doesn't write anything in it, but I use it to take notes of important things he's said during the lesson that aren't scrawled on the sheet music. I also listen in to my sons lesson (we are back to back) and note down anything he needs to work on. I have a terrible memory so it's worked out quite well. I generally break it down by piece and usually note general themes I need to work on, and really insightful comments and any notes that are too big to fit on the music.



Currently learning: Beethoven "Easy" Sonata Op 49 No 2, JS Bach WTC Prelude No 2 in C minor
Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2750653
07/10/18 05:58 PM
07/10/18 05:58 PM
Joined: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,969
Midwest USA
Stubbie Offline
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Midwest USA
I have a log book that I keep next to the piano. I spend a minute or less each day writing in it. I record the date, the scale/arps/etc that I'm working on, and the composer and opus & number of each piece I practice. In the early days of learning a piece, I might write down the measures I've "chunked" it into; if I'm practicing with the metronome on a particular piece, I'll write down the bpms I did. I never write down how long I practice a piece during practice--I'm not sure that would be useful to me (but it might be to others). The log book is mainly just for my own interest--it's a testament to all those days practicing. Besides, with all the cryptic shorthand and abbreviations I use, no one would be able to make heads or tails of my log book. smile

At my lesson, I have a notebook where I record the date and the pieces in the order I plan to play them. I jot down notes there or on the score. My teacher does not write in my notebook, though she does write on the score (boldly and in big cursive handwriting!). I've recorded lessons once or twice. I should do it more often, though searching through an hour of recording to find the 3 seconds where my teacher said, "Half-pedal here" could get tedious.


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Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2750659
07/10/18 06:16 PM
07/10/18 06:16 PM
Joined: May 2018
Posts: 257
Quebec city, QC
CadenzaVvi Offline
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Posts: 257
Quebec city, QC
I started a log book last year.

At first, I logged in it what I practiced, somewhat detailed (no more than one line per piece) and for how long.
I also take notes after each lessons about the advices my teacher gave me. My book is small, so it can take me 1-2 pages (usualy 1-1 1/2).

It looked like this for practice logging and like this for lessons notes.

Since I have a decent piano at home, my practice is spent differently. I often go to the piano for fun, play one piece, stumble somewhere and decide to practice that part. I'm in front of my piano for 10-15-30 minutes. Then I go do something else and go back to my piano a little bit later.
In that format, logging everything I do becomes tiresome. When I did practice for 3 hours strait, it was easy, but now, it doesn't fit my way of playing.
So I've changed a little bit how I do it. Now, I still take notes after lessons. For the rest, I simply put questions in there. And I feel like it will become more useful than simply stating what I did (even though I did write exclamation marks, which meant "I have trouble with this and should ask my teacher about it"), because I have a short and clear list when I enter my lessons with things that were causing me troubles. But it still has to be time-proof since I've just started doing things this way.


I must say though that I was interested by the stats I've made with my logging of the previous year.
But my interest is not deep enought that I force myself into logging my practice time. Results are all that count!

Oh, and my teacher doesn't put a single word in it. Not that I would care though.

My previous teachers (when I played clarinet in my younger years) did do that, either in a small book or on simple sheets. It was simple notes on what I had to practice (which pieces / scales, with some basic notes on what to be careful about).
I think it is very important for children but maybe less for adults, unless you tend to be forgetful.


Oh, I have 2 pictures / comics on it that I find funny and inspiring :

This one reminds me that nothing comes without practice. When I hear my teacher playing in sight reading better than I play with 3 months of practice and that I think how unfair this is, I remind me of this comic and tell me that the contraty would be unfair! Then I go back to practice!

And this one is something I think at times. Really, if I practice, it is not because I enjoy practicing. I enjoy playing the piano (and I enjoy accomplishing something; getting better). But to be able to play the pieces I want to play, I need to practice. I find this one funny because it is so true at time that I don't feel like practicing, but I know I can't get awesome without it. So go back to practice!


My piano journey from day 1
Started piano on February 2016.
Pieces I'm working on :
- Rameau, Les Sauvages
- Beethoven, sonata op. 49, no. 1, 1st mov
- Chopin, nocturne op. posth. in C# minor
- Debussy, Golliwog's cakewalk
Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2750664
07/10/18 06:34 PM
07/10/18 06:34 PM
Joined: Jun 2017
Posts: 751
Union SC
monkeeys Offline
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Posts: 751
Union SC
Neat cartoons and so true.


Alesis Coda Pro
PianoVideoLessons.com Currently Unit 4
Alfred Adult Piano 1-ebook version
Grateful Dead fan since 1987
Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2750673
07/10/18 07:01 PM
07/10/18 07:01 PM
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 106
Southeast USA
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Progman Offline OP
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Southeast USA
Wow!! Thanks for sharing - there's some quite interesting points for refinement of my process going forward. I also had a good laugh at the comics from Jouishy! I think a few of you might be considered obsessive.....in the best possible way. I am a retired mechanical engineer and will exhibit similar tendencies before long....


Progman
1997 Baldwin 'Classic' Console
Kawai ES100
Alfreds bk 1 + Teacher
Long Live ELP
Re: About that Log Book [Re: CadenzaVvi] #2750706
07/11/18 12:56 AM
07/11/18 12:56 AM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 554
Kitsap County, WA
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Kitsap County, WA
Originally Posted by Jouishy


Your handwriting is impeccable! I don't think anyone could read my notes, including myself sometimes frown



Currently learning: Beethoven "Easy" Sonata Op 49 No 2, JS Bach WTC Prelude No 2 in C minor
Re: About that Log Book [Re: Progman] #2751042
07/12/18 03:50 PM
07/12/18 03:50 PM
Joined: Oct 2017
Posts: 103
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schinl Offline
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I'm also a fountain pen aficionado, so of course I will have a note book smile Full of many fountain pen ink colors!

I log how many hours a day I practice, and what I practice. This reminds me of old pieces I might have forgotten to refresh. Sometimes I also write about any problems I encounter, such as which bars are particularly difficult, any particular notes to ask my teacher, or whatever else. I also make a note of where I am in a piece, and it is encouraging to see my progress as the pages pile on. After two weeks I collect these notes and bring up any problems to my teacher.

My teacher also uses the log book as a lesson plan for the next two weeks.

I also write down any dissatisfaction or questions about my piano to bring up to the technician for next time.


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