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Re: Students Practicing
off the record, give them candy. Chocolate is a miracle elixer. I went from having 75% attendance to 95% attendance at sectionals because sections with 100% participation all got a piece of candy.
Also, email home and tell their parents. That has made an impact on our assignments, too.
I require 45 minutes of practice time per week for all of my students, 6-12. They can complete their time by practicing in the band hall before/after school or during lunch, using SmartMusic, or recording a video on their school issued device (they all have one) or phone, and uploading that video to google classroom. I give them from Monday at 12AM to Sunday at 11:59PM to complete it. I also accept late submissions with a time stamp showing it was done during the proper time frame) with no penalties.
I am having the hardest time getting my kids to actually practice. The time completed is a test grade (30% weight) every single week, and failing grades don't seem to be enough. I've gotten some help from parent contact, but not much. I even started a competition between classes (they have to either get the highest number of minutes practiced or meet a "magic number" based on their class size) that the winning class(es) of receive prizes for. I've used snacks as the prize, although I've only been trying it for a couple of weeks now.
After all of this, I still had only 35% of students in my program that finished all of their practice time last week. Since starting the competition practice time has increased a little bit, but not as much as necessary. What works for you? Do I just keep failing them and wait for them to get out at the end of the school year? How can I help my students be more successful?
Note- I do my best to teach them strategies for practice in class, which includes outright explanation, modeling, time for independent practice time with guidance, etc.