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Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: HollyBytheLake] #2832550
03/28/19 11:05 PM
03/28/19 11:05 PM
Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 140
Madison
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HollyBytheLake Offline OP
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Madison
Thanks for the feedback Kesolo, (You too, Progman)

On the 7 Levels, you're absolutely right that those sudden butterfingers spells can take you out of nowhere. The way I learned this (from an internet teacher here in the States, Zach Evans) you get to that spot and you want to finish and be done, well then you better SLOW DOWN until you can play it accurately. And what have you learned from this? You now know what speed you can really play it at under duress, which will invariably be SLOWER than you thought.

As for the Czerny, a funny thing happened today after reading your reply to my post earlier. I sat down to do Czerny. Coming along nicely except for those last two darn measures. Well if 7 levels shows exactly what tempo you can really play something, it's time to put the big girl britches on and see what's what.

Can't say it was fun, but I did the last four measure 7 levels as my practice session on Czerny today. Learning that what I wanted to play at 72 today could most accurately and controlled be played at 42 was a humbling thing, BUT, I got up from that session KNOWING I'd improved it. And when I sit down to it again those four measures are going to get all my attention until they get up to 72 with the rest of the piece. Then we'll see what's what.

Last edited by HollyBytheLake; 03/28/19 11:06 PM.

but think how good I could be in five years...
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Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: HollyBytheLake] #2832697
03/29/19 12:05 PM
03/29/19 12:05 PM
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I tried 25% speed this morning on a new piece. I found it a very positive experience. One thing I noticed right away is the ability for me to relax my hands after each note. This is very important in my quest get my hands to be as tension free as possible! Like Keselo said - total control.


Progman
Baldwin Console + Kawai ES100
Alfreds bk 1 + Teacher
Long Live ELP
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: HollyBytheLake] #2832838
03/29/19 08:14 PM
03/29/19 08:14 PM
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Madison
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Madison
Keep us posted Progman!


but think how good I could be in five years...
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: HollyBytheLake] #2836979
04/08/19 09:28 PM
04/08/19 09:28 PM
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A week goes by, I change my methods, same old, same old…

At least this time I can blame Josh Wright at least partially. (Not really, but I could make a case for it)

For those of you who don’t know who that is, Dr. Wright is a concert pianist, professor at a college in Utah, and Ph.D. in piano performance. He also has a nifty YouTube channel where he posts generous 10 minute or so snippets of the teaching videos he has available on his website via various courses. I’ve been watching these freebies since last June.

My birthday is coming up this Friday (Happy 50th to me!) and I decided it was time to put my money where my typing is and get a teacher…at least vicariously. I put said money down on Josh’s VIP Propractice Lifetime Access membership and now have access to the full hour lessons he has divvied up into Beginner, Intermediate, and Advanced repertoire and technique. (He strongly suggests working through the exact same method books I’m already using alongside his lessons, so I’m covered. He does this because he’s not doing piano method so much as performance, what we here on PW usually call “expression”, which happens to take a lot of teaching of skills to do, but does not replace a method book.)

The first video “How to Divide Up Your Practice Session” is one I saw on YouTube and have spent the last year trying to outmaneuver, but now we come to the fact that I’ve put MONEY down for this advice, so I’m damn well going to follow it. I don’t want to infringe on his copyright giving too many details, but he gives a range of times for sight reading, technique and repertoire, divvied by overall practice time. Within those ranges what works for ME and my desire to do about 2 hours a day, according to Josh, is about:

15 minutes of sight reading
30 minutes of technique
75 minutes on no more than 3 repertoire pieces (1 easy, 1 medium and 1 hard)

Those of you who have gotten through this far with me know this is a catastrophic level of upheaval to my world. Did I mention I PAID for this advice?

But, but, but…all the MUSIC, the lovely, lovely, varied, never ending supply of MUSIC that I want to play! What if I MISS something? When the realization hit that something had to CHANGE, and change DRASTICALLY, I was up until 2 a.m. wrestling with my year-by-week spreadsheet and music list two nights in a row. My lists and spreadsheets and methodology outlines finally yielded by afternoon on the third day and all was right on the piano bench once again.

How can my former list of 102 pieces/year done at 10-16 a day be manipulated into anything manageable to the above regimen? How do I keep from going nuts like the last time I tried something so formal and tightly scripted? How do I keep my head up under the onslaught of “I told you so,” sure to come my way as if something similar hasn’t be said repeatedly on this very thread?

Well, from here on out I’m interpreting his advice (and everyone else's) to my needs, so please don’t blame Dr. Wright if you think it’s a pear-shaped mess.

Light bulb #1: 15 minutes is a HUGE amount of sight reading per day. What if the vast bulk of all the lovely excess music I want a chance at gets a stickie on the front cover labeled, “for sight-reading” and set aside until such time as it IS sight reading? Leaving me all the time I would be trying to make this stupendous list of music "repertoire" available to work a tiny amount of far more advanced pieces into actually being "repertoire" and at a much deeper level than I could do for such masses of material? (I’ll have you know, dear readers, that that’s called reinventing the wheel, and I want full credit for it!)

But seriously, it finally got through to me that all the fun music I would love to play, but would have to LEARN if I try it now, can in the future be a fun time briefly in a sight reading session and if it’s really something great moved to play just for fun time, as opposed to EVERY SINGLE PIECE I touch having to be practiced to sound like anything at all.

Light bulb #2: Josh is listing scales in the intermediate exercise realm and I’ve still got roughly three years to get through beginner, advanced beginner, and late beginner skills. (these categories brought to you by the ever-brilliant Kesolo). My plan is to break Josh’s beginner repertoire into 2-3 years. It starts with Notebook for Anna Magdalena so we’re not talking about EARLY beginner here, right? But the POINT is my 30 minutes of technique does not need to be SCALES dominant for quite some time. What if I broke my 30 minutes of technique down into 10 minutes for an Etude, 10 minutes for an exercise, and 10 minutes for scales? That would yield over two hours in 2 weeks for each etude and exercise. More than enough for the pieces I’m doing.

Light Bulb #3: When considering three paltry pieces of music at a time to be working to a high performance level of mastery, it was advised one be easy: less than a month of work needed; one should be a little more work: say 1-3 months; and one labeled simply hard: 3-6 months. The lightbulb comes when dear Josh gives permission to work two items of easy material if they are method book study. Whoop! Something clicked and I realized in addition to all my lesson pieces counting as my "easy pieces", all the Snell and RCM music I’m doing could be condensed into 12 pieces to cover the middle territory over a year’s time, and hard will be handled by what I study with ProPractice at roughly four pieces a year. That will leave a tremendous number of etudes and repertoire book materials untouched. FOR NOW. See Light Bulb #1.

So how does this shake out for a day? Did you really think I wouldn’t have OCD’d that part, too?

Session 1:
15 Sight reading
15 Easy: Faber lesson piece 1

Session 2
10 Scales (I prefer RCM over Snell for Scales so I’m dropping
trying to do both)
30 Difficult: piece I’m working on over 3 months
(until July I’m powering through Faber lessons with this time, as I have hit one of those wonderful twilight zone stages where what used to take two weeks in lesson time is taking about 4 days and I want to make full use of the growth spurt while it lasts)

Session 3
10 Exercise: Mikrokosmos alternating with Czerny
(in July I start Hanon/Schmidtt per Josh’s curriculum)
15 Easy: Faber lesson piece 2

Session 4
10 Etude: Alternate RCM and Snell 1 piece at a time
15 Medium: RCM or Snell repertoire, change pieces every 4 weeks or so

Session 5 OPTIONAL and not part of 2 hours goal as I consider this essentially all play, not practice
10 Fun time: Repertoire maintenance & spaced repetition
20 Theory (I opted to drop RCM as I prefer theory in Snell books)
5 Ear training with RCM materials

All of session 5 can be dropped for weeks on end depending on life or I can choose any one part of session 5 to wind down the evening with.

At one point in time, documented previously, I was doing around 16 pieces, exercises, etudes, etc. any given week. This will drop it to 6.

Total.

6 plus scales, that’s all.

(insert eye roll at all of the I told you sos coming my way)

But getting here my own way in my own time will keep my Scots-Irish butt out of rebellion mode. For the time being.

I’m pretty confident Sessions 1-4 will get the job done to meet my goals.

Said goals, by the way, are Satie’s Gnossiennes #1, a serious piece of Chopin to be named later, and the entire Ray Charles Song Book, so I have a LONG way to go!

Lots of etudes, repertoire books, sheet music by composer, exercise canons and probably the entire Kabalevsky Op. 39, will have to wait until I look through them and think, ‘gee, this is sight reading material…”

For those wondering why not pick Snell or RCM I simply can’t. I will not be a victim of the classical v/s modern debate. I want to play Ray Charles and Gershwin every bit as much as Chopin. Sue me, but don’t get between me and my R&B/jazz!

I don’t doubt I’ll get there. In the meantime, I’ve ordered my copy of Notebook for Anna Magdalena, which before this over-hall would have been started when I got to RCM 3, somewhere in 2021, but will instead be opened on my one-year serious practice anniversary in July 2019, at roughly 350 lifetime practice hours. I’m good with that.

Back to talking specific pieces and their pros, cons, sorrows and joys next week.

Happy Practicing everyone!


but think how good I could be in five years...
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: HollyBytheLake] #2837031
04/09/19 12:21 AM
04/09/19 12:21 AM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 4,362
Tyrone Slothrop Offline
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Originally Posted by HollyBytheLake
Light bulb #2: Josh is listing scales in the intermediate exercise realm and I’ve still got roughly three years to get through beginner, advanced beginner, and late beginner skills. (these categories brought to you by the ever-brilliant Kesolo).

I think you need to investigate what Josh means by "intermediate" because it may not be the same as what Keselo calls "intermediate." Remember, "intermediate" is just a term carries no precise meaning by itself. With all due respect to Keselo, you can't use Keselo's definitions and apply them to Josh's remarks as this is combining different systems.

Two Data points.

First, recently, I looked at a course based on RCM which lumped RCM Prep A and RCM Prep B into "Introductory" and RCM Levels 1 to 5 as "Intermediate." For reference, this is an RCM Level 1 piece:



However, Keselo put this in the Beginner level.

Secondly, Allysia Van Betuw calls RCM Levels 3-6 as Intermediate:



For reference, Petzold's Minuet in G Major, BWV Anh. 114 which is an RCM Level 3 piece, is "Intermediate" in Allysia's system:



However, BWV Anh. 114, Keselo has classified as Late Beginner.

So this is just to say that while Keselo has done brilliant and thorough research, you can't just take Josh Wright's words and layer them on top of Keselo's framework. Josh's framework and Keselo's framework could both be self-consistent, but not consistent with each other.

Originally Posted by HollyBytheLake
My plan is to break Josh’s beginner repertoire into 2-3 years. It starts with Notebook for Anna Magdalena so we’re not talking about EARLY beginner here, right? But the POINT is my 30 minutes of technique does not need to be SCALES dominant for quite some time. What if I broke my 30 minutes of technique down into 10 minutes for an Etude, 10 minutes for an exercise, and 10 minutes for scales? That would yield over two hours in 2 weeks for each etude and exercise. More than enough for the pieces I’m doing.

Not going to talk about whether technique is "scale dominant" or not at your level. I'm no teacher. However, I will say that with regard to "classical piano," the three major international piano certification programs all include scales at much lower levels:

RCM specifies that in RCM level Prep B, the student can play one-octave scales with each hand-separately in the keys of C & G Major & A minor (natural), as well as play a hands-together, contrary-motion scale of one-octave in the key of C Major. Then by RCM Level 1, this already expands to hands-separate, two-octave C, G, F major and A, E, D minor (natural and harmonic) @ 69 BPM, hands-together, two-octave contrary-motion scales in C Major and Chromatic.

ABRSM specifies that in ABRSM Grade 1, the student can play hands-separate, two-octave scales in C, G, D, F majors and A, D minors (natural, harmonic, and melodic) @ 60 BPM, and hands-together contrary-motion scales of one-octave in C major @ 60 BPM.

Trinity specifies that in Trinity Grade Initial (which Trinity estimates as a total of 8 hours of teaching and 32 hours of independent practice, or about 8 weeks of piano learning, in total), the student can play hands-separate, one-octave C Major & A minor (natural, harmonic, and melodic) @ 60 BPM. Then by Trinity Grade 1 (which Trinity estimates as an additional total of 12 hours of teaching and 48 hours of independent practice over the Grade 'Initial', or about another 12 weeks of piano learning, after Grade 'Initial'), this already expands to hands-separate, one-octave F, G Major & D, E minor (natural, harmonic, and melodic) @ 70 BPM, hands-together, one-octave contrary-motion scale in C Major, and hands-together, one-octave chromatic scale starting on D.

This is just to say the major piano curriculums all dictate a relatively early start to scale work for "classical piano."

Since you are a paying subscriber to Josh's teaching materials, I suggest you might email him and ask him to clarify that when he says "intermediate exercise" with respect to scales, when he actually envisions people starting this, including the most basic scales, because it does not appear "mainstream" to start scales work very late. I'm definitely not saying though it can't be done - I'm a piano learner myself and not a teacher, but I'm just referring to these various materials I've found above.


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Tyrone Slothrop] #2837034
04/09/19 12:36 AM
04/09/19 12:36 AM
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Posts: 4,362
Tyrone Slothrop Offline
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Posts: 4,362
BTW, regarding Intermediate, Trinity considers that the typical piano student reaches intermediate level from a complete cold start of touching piano for first time, after a total of 104 hours of teacher time and 536 independent practice hours, which is a total of 640 total hours of piano.


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: HollyBytheLake] #2837039
04/09/19 01:26 AM
04/09/19 01:26 AM
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 506
Sweden
Animisha Offline
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Joined: Jun 2018
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Originally Posted by HollyBytheLake

Light bulb #1: 15 minutes is a HUGE amount of sight reading per day. What if the vast bulk of all the lovely excess music I want a chance at gets a stickie on the front cover labeled, “for sight-reading” and set aside until such time as it IS sight reading? Leaving me all the time I would be trying to make this stupendous list of music "repertoire" available to work a tiny amount of far more advanced pieces into actually being "repertoire" and at a much deeper level than I could do for such masses of material? (I’ll have you know, dear readers, that that’s called reinventing the wheel, and I want full credit for it!)

Just to tell you I've gone through a similar process. I threw my boring, boring sight-reading book out the door, and instead made a nice pile of method books and beginners' books, and started to sight-read from them. Most of these books are graded so I open a book and play the pieces from the beginning until they get too difficult for sight-reading. I make a note of the date and how far I have got and put them on the bottom of the pile. I am already looking forward to the moment in one or two years when I can pick up the first book again and see how far I come this time.

Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
RCM specifies that in RCM level Prep B, the student can play one-octave scales with each hand-separately in the keys of C & G Major & A minor (natural), as well as play a hands-together, contrary-motion scale of one-octave in the key of C Major. Then by RCM Level 1, this already expands to hands-separate, two-octave C, G, F major and A, E, D minor (natural and harmonic) @ 69 BPM, hands-together, two-octave contrary-motion scales in C Major and Chromatic.

Here comes a detail question that I have wondered about. At page 24, RCM specifies indeed 69 BPM for a quarter note, but in the column to the right, they write "note values" and show eight notes. Does that mean that if you play a note on each beat, the metronome should be on 138?


Playing the piano is learning to create, playfully and deeply seriously, our own music in the world.
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Animisha] #2837046
04/09/19 02:32 AM
04/09/19 02:32 AM
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Posts: 4,362
Tyrone Slothrop Offline
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Posts: 4,362
Originally Posted by Animisha
Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
RCM specifies that in RCM level Prep B, the student can play one-octave scales with each hand-separately in the keys of C & G Major & A minor (natural), as well as play a hands-together, contrary-motion scale of one-octave in the key of C Major. Then by RCM Level 1, this already expands to hands-separate, two-octave C, G, F major and A, E, D minor (natural and harmonic) @ 69 BPM, hands-together, two-octave contrary-motion scales in C Major and Chromatic.

Here comes a detail question that I have wondered about. At page 24, RCM specifies indeed 69 BPM for a quarter note, but in the column to the right, they write "note values" and show eight notes. Does that mean that if you play a note on each beat, the metronome should be on 138?

Good catch. Yes, that means that RCM wants you to play the scales with eighth notes for each note. Since the the tempo is 69 which is about 0.85 seconds per note. That mean you have to hold each note of the scale for less than half a second. I don't know if technically, from a musical perspective, one can think of this as a tempo of eighth note = 138, since each eighth note is only half a beat and not a whole beat, but certainly from a purely mathematical perspective, that's how it numerically works out to be.


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Tyrone Slothrop] #2837075
04/09/19 05:17 AM
04/09/19 05:17 AM
Joined: Mar 2019
Posts: 305
Cheshire, UK
Cheshire Chris Offline
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Cheshire, UK
Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
BTW, regarding Intermediate, Trinity considers that the typical piano student reaches intermediate level from a complete cold start of touching piano for first time, after a total of 104 hours of teacher time and 536 independent practice hours, which is a total of 640 total hours of piano.


That seems like a very high ratio of lesson to practice time: only a little over 5h of practice per hour of teaching. My ratio is way higher: half an hour's lesson a week and 1-1.5h of practice a day, so a ratio of between 14:1 and 21:1. I wonder which they consider to be more important? Teaching time, or practice time? My gut feeling is that provided you have sufficient lesson time to allow your teacher to correct your mistakes, it's the practice time that matters more. What do other people think?


Chris

Yamaha P-515, Yamaha Reface CP.
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Cheshire Chris] #2837097
04/09/19 06:16 AM
04/09/19 06:16 AM
Joined: Apr 2018
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Tyrone Slothrop Offline
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Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 4,362
Originally Posted by Cheshire Chris
My gut feeling is that provided you have sufficient lesson time to allow your teacher to correct your mistakes, it's the practice time that matters more. What do other people think?

Not being a teacher, I'm not qualified to address this question, but since you are asking about the Trinity numbers, I thought I would post the screen shot from the Trinity syllabus with the table of hours.

[Linked Image]

The table above translates into the following aggregated number of hours: (i.e., typical total hours from complete cold-start to complete to a given Trinity grade)
Code
	Teacher	Independent	Total	
	Hours	Study Hours	Hours
Initial	   8	     32		   40
Grade 1	  20	     80		  100
Grade 2	  38	    152		  190
Grade 3	  56	    254		  310
Grade 4	  80	    380		  460
Grade 5	 104	    536		  640
Grade 6	 140	    720		  860
Grade 7	 188	    942		1,130
Grade 8	 242	  1,208		1,450


The Grade 5 row above was the one that I was alluding to which Trinity considers "Intermediate" level.

Note that they do point out people are different so the actual numbers will vary. I assume this is only what they consider typical. And of course, these presumably were estimated from a student population which is by far, mostly children, with only a sprinkling of adults.

Although not being a teacher, I can't say this for sure, but I also strongly suspect that as in most endeavors, there's a point of diminishing return. As Warren Buffet (and others such as Fred Brooks) said, “No matter how great the talent or efforts, some things just take time. In piano terms, you can't produce a baby in one month by getting nine women pregnant.” Practicing 8 hours a day won't get you a (Trinity) Grade 8 in 6 months! wink

I wonder were that point of diminishing returns is, though, according to these Trinity numbers? Is it 1 hour a day? 2 hours a day? I already think 3 hours per day is past the point of diminishing returns as, in theory, if it could scale that way, you'd be able to complete your Grade 8 in 16 months. I suspect this is highly unlikely, so 3 hrs/day is probably already past the "elbow in the graph."


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Cheshire Chris] #2837103
04/09/19 06:32 AM
04/09/19 06:32 AM
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Sweden
Animisha Offline
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Animisha  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 506
Sweden
Originally Posted by Cheshire Chris
Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop
BTW, regarding Intermediate, Trinity considers that the typical piano student reaches intermediate level from a complete cold start of touching piano for first time, after a total of 104 hours of teacher time and 536 independent practice hours, which is a total of 640 total hours of piano.


That seems like a very high ratio of lesson to practice time: only a little over 5h of practice per hour of teaching.

For a child, this is perfectly reasonabie: one hour lesson every week, and five days one hour of practice. Seventh day off.


Playing the piano is learning to create, playfully and deeply seriously, our own music in the world.
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Animisha] #2837107
04/09/19 06:45 AM
04/09/19 06:45 AM
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Posts: 305
Cheshire, UK
Cheshire Chris Offline
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Originally Posted by Animisha

For a child, this is perfectly reasonabie: one hour lesson every week, and five days one hour of practice. Seventh day off.


Good point. I was wondering if the fact that I only have half an hour's lesson a week means it's likely to take me twice as long to reach the same standard? I'm guessing that for a motivated adult, the lesson is primarily a matter of correcting mistakes: it's directed practice that results in improvement?


Chris

Yamaha P-515, Yamaha Reface CP.
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Cheshire Chris] #2837108
04/09/19 06:50 AM
04/09/19 06:50 AM
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Tyrone Slothrop Offline
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Posts: 4,362
Originally Posted by Cheshire Chris
That seems like a very high ratio of lesson to practice time: only a little over 5h of practice per hour of teaching. My ratio is way higher: half an hour's lesson a week and 1-1.5h of practice a day, so a ratio of between 14:1 and 21:1.

Since New Year, my ratio has been 7:1 - about 1.5h/day of practice & 1.5h/wk of lessons. I feel I am making decent progress, so I feel good about my mix of practice and lesson time.

The interesting thing though is that last year, I had 1h/wk of lessons. and 1h/day of practice, or again a 7:1 ratio. When I increased to 1.5h/wk of lessons in January, I was not anticipating increasing my daily practice time. However, it just did almost by itself just to keep up with my assignments. I don't know if this suggests that 7:1 really is the optimal ratio for me and that if I were to again increase my weekly lesson time, to say 2h/wk, I would be practicing 2 h/day! confused


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Cheshire Chris] #2837115
04/09/19 07:10 AM
04/09/19 07:10 AM
Joined: Jun 2018
Posts: 506
Sweden
Animisha Offline
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Animisha  Offline
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Joined: Jun 2018
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Originally Posted by Cheshire Chris
Originally Posted by Animisha

For a child, this is perfectly reasonabie: one hour lesson every week, and five days one hour of practice. Seventh day off.


Good point. I was wondering if the fact that I only have half an hour's lesson a week means it's likely to take me twice as long to reach the same standard?


I think that there is quite a lot that needs to be taught to children, that doesn't need to be taught to adults, especially in the beginning. Young children will probably need much more help just to read notes, to understand music theory, to develop good practice habits.
On the other hand, children have advantages when it comes to memory, especially when you're no longer a young adult.

Originally Posted by Cheshire Chris
I'm guessing that for a motivated adult, the lesson is primarily a matter of correcting mistakes: it's directed practice that results in improvement?

That sounds rather meagre to me. My video teacher analyses the piece and demonstrates lots of detailed practice instructions. Like the phrase starts here and ends here, and this note is the culmination of the phrase, and this note you should play with a very smooth legato and softer than the note before, etc etc. All very interesting and helpful.


Playing the piano is learning to create, playfully and deeply seriously, our own music in the world.
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Animisha] #2837145
04/09/19 08:26 AM
04/09/19 08:26 AM
Joined: Mar 2019
Posts: 305
Cheshire, UK
Cheshire Chris Offline
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Cheshire, UK
Originally Posted by Animisha

Originally Posted by Cheshire Chris
I'm guessing that for a motivated adult, the lesson is primarily a matter of correcting mistakes: it's directed practice that results in improvement?

That sounds rather meagre to me. My video teacher analyses the piece and demonstrates lots of detailed practice instructions. Like the phrase starts here and ends here, and this note is the culmination of the phrase, and this note you should play with a very smooth legato and softer than the note before, etc etc. All very interesting and helpful.



My teacher does that, too. Then corrects my mistakes when I play back what I've been practicing, in the next lesson.


Chris

Yamaha P-515, Yamaha Reface CP.
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: HollyBytheLake] #2837156
04/09/19 08:51 AM
04/09/19 08:51 AM
Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 140
Madison
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Madison
Thanks to everyone. Too many to name this time! I'm so glad to have this thread to nerd out with my fellow piano enthusiasts. I have to get going this morning, but I did want to put in that I do realize Kesolo's terms may not match up exactly with Josh's, which is why my spreadsheet is on Excel. Everything can be in flux and moved around at will. What was exciting for me was to get going with the easy, medium, hard format with my current materials (those I'm keeping) and Josh's.

But say life is good and the Notebook pieces don't actually take me a full 3 months to complete. Well some spaces get deleted and the next one moves up. And I start considering how much Snell and RCM I have to be doing to move up a "level" in their estimation. Levels are different for every single system so it's all a crap shoot. Having a TIME reference for easy, medium, hard, is exciting for me because I can put material, no matter what the source level, into whichever category it fits and move on.

Looking forward to rereading from my post forward when I have more time.

Carry on!

Last edited by HollyBytheLake; 04/09/19 08:52 AM.

but think how good I could be in five years...
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Tyrone Slothrop] #2837180
04/09/19 09:34 AM
04/09/19 09:34 AM
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Posts: 305
Cheshire, UK
Cheshire Chris Offline
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Originally Posted by Tyrone Slothrop

The interesting thing though is that last year, I had 1h/wk of lessons. and 1h/day of practice, or again a 7:1 ratio. When I increased to 1.5h/wk of lessons in January, I was not anticipating increasing my daily practice time. However, it just did almost by itself just to keep up with my assignments. I don't know if this suggests that 7:1 really is the optimal ratio for me and that if I were to again increase my weekly lesson time, to say 2h/wk, I would be practicing 2 h/day! confused


Thanks - that’s very interesting. To be honest I’m running out of things to do, only having a half hour piano lesson a week, but longer lessons would be a financial commitment I can’t really take on at the moment. I’ve pretty much mastered the two new pieces I’m working on each week after 3 or 4 days of practice, so I spend the rest of the time playing all my older pieces over and over, which is a bit boring on occasions. I’m sure that’ll change as the practice pieces get more challenging!

I’ve recently bought a set of two books called “The Joy of First Classics”, which look good, so I’m planning to start working on the easiest pieces from those when I’ve done my assigned practice each week.


Chris

Yamaha P-515, Yamaha Reface CP.
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: Cheshire Chris] #2837188
04/09/19 09:46 AM
04/09/19 09:46 AM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 4,362
Tyrone Slothrop Offline
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Originally Posted by Cheshire Chris
Thanks - that’s very interesting. To be honest I’m running out of things to do, only having a half hour piano lesson a week, but longer lessons would be a financial commitment I can’t really take on at the moment. I’ve pretty much mastered the two new pieces I’m working on each week after 3 or 4 days of practice, so I spend the rest of the time playing all my older pieces over and over, which is a bit boring on occasions. I’m sure that’ll change as the practice pieces get more challenging!

Yeah, not a good idea to make more of a financial commitment than one can afford. But 14-21:1 seems really exceptional for the early beginner level for reasons you mention. There is just not that much to practice. Perhaps you should also talk to your teacher about starting étude and scales? Also, perhaps you could spend some of that time (which certainly would count as "piano-related" time) on music theory and/or aural training? I suggest you discuss all this with your teacher.

But now I'm filling up Holly's thread with non-Holly stuff. Perhaps you should start a new thread to gather ideas about what to do with your 14-21:1 time? Or if you should even be doing that much practice at this stage. I sort of lean towards not overdoing, myself.


across the stone, deathless piano performances

"Discipline is more reliable than motivation." -by a contributor on Reddit r/piano
"Success is 10% inspiration, and 90% perspiration." -by some other wise person
"Pianoteq manages to keep it all together yet simultaneously also go in all directions; like a quantum particle entangled with an unknown and spooky parallel universe simply waiting to be discovered." -by Pete14
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: HollyBytheLake] #2837206
04/09/19 10:46 AM
04/09/19 10:46 AM
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Posts: 305
Cheshire, UK
Cheshire Chris Offline
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My apologies to Holly for hijacking her thread! I’ll start a new one.


Chris

Yamaha P-515, Yamaha Reface CP.
Re: Holly's Practice Diary [Re: HollyBytheLake] #2837245
04/09/19 11:53 AM
04/09/19 11:53 AM
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Posts: 140
Madison
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Madison
Chris and TS,
It was a very entertaining read so no worries. smile


but think how good I could be in five years...
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