Within days of reading Gretchen Saathoff’s ebook, Goal-oriented Practice, I was already referring to it in conversations with students during their lessons. The 39-page book is an easy read – written in a conversational and easy-to-understand style. Sections of the book include:
- Your Practice Environment
- Warming Up
- Learning the Music
- You’re Off to a Good Start!
- Keeping a Practice Log
- Setting Goals
- Page Layouts
- Are You Listening?
- Play What It Is, Not What It Isn’t
- Practice Tools You Already Own
- Activate Your Practice with Your Animated SELF
- The Little Coach On Your Shoulder
- Beyond the Notes
- Outside the Box
- Assembling a Piece
- Increasing the Tempo
As an active performer, Gretchen speaks with authority on the subject of learning your pieces well and quickly. Probably the two things that have stuck with me the most since reading the book are making the distinction between sight-reading and practicing, and the importance of establishing clear goals for every practice session. Gretchen’s writing is full of thoughtful questions and practical applications so that you can readily use the information she presents. Her sense of humor is also evident in little quips and remarks throughout the book!
Gretchen has graciously offered to giveaway 3 copies of Goal-oriented Practice to Music Matters Blog readers. Just leave a comment below to be entered in the drawing. I will use a random number generator to determine the three winners at noon on Thursday, November 11!