4 Weeks To Recital Ready: A Plan For Piano Student Preparedness

If you’re like me, it feels like the weeks are just racing by. Although I knew it was coming, seeing November pop up on the calendar yesterday morning gave me a bit of a jolt. November! Already!

For many piano teachers, November marks the start of serious holiday recital preparations. How many Novembers have we all spent prepping recital pieces to ensure our piano students experience successful performances?! Too many to count. Still, the weeks fly by quickly, and BAMMO!… recitals arrive… and some of our students are still scrambling to get ready.

And so, instead of allowing those weeks to sneak away from us this year, I have a recital readiness plan that you can use to make sure your students are prepped to play when the time comes.

4 Weeks To Recital Ready A Plan For Piano Student

Your “4 Weeks To Recital” Readiness Plan

If you too are “done” with hoping, praying, and fretting about your piano students’ recital preparations (or lack thereof!), then you’ll appreciate the schedule set out below.

Beginning 4 weeks before your piano recital, compare your piano students’ readiness to my schedule. Are they on track? Wonderful. Are they not on schedule? Time for a home practice intervention.

By giving yourself 4 weeks of planned-out preparation, come recital time, every one of your students should be 100% recital ready… leaving you to plan the rest of the event stress-free!

Ready to get started?

Let Your Piano Recital Countdown Begin

T Minus 4 Weeks:

Your piano student…

  • has chosen her recital piece
  • has completed a score study on her piece (try this printable!)
  • can play her piece hands together with few mistakes and a modified tempo
  • can “tap track” her piece easily (see this post)
  • has a clear understanding of what needs to be fixed during home practice
  • has selected two performance goals

T Minus 3 Weeks:

Your piano student…

  • can play her piece with little to no mistakes at a modified tempo (as needed)
  • pays careful attention when adding expression to her performance
  • plays with no rhythmic errors
  • can name the first and last note(s) and/or chords without looking at the score
  • has completed these three “mental piano practice” activities
  • can complete these fluency exercises
  • is working on memorizing the piece (even if this is not a recital requirement)

T Minus 2 Weeks:

Your piano student…

  • can play her piece with little to no mistakes at the indicated tempo
  • has performed the piece for at least two different people
  • can play her piece from memory with little to no assistance
  • can stop and re-start from any point in the score
  • has noted her “Landmark Breaths” on her piece (see the post)
  • has recorded the piece on video and created practice goals based on her observations

T Minus 1 Week:

Your piano student…

  • can play her piece with little to no mistakes at the indicated tempo
  • has completed our “Recital Bootcamp Circuit” with ease
  • has played her piece on at least one “unfamiliar” piano
  • can play her piece in a variety of octaves on the piano and at a variety of tempos
  • has selected “trouble spot” places (places where she can re-start if things “go wrong”)
  • has completed a guided visualization of her performance
  • is excited about showing off her hard work!

Looking For Holiday Recital Repertoire?

If you teach late primer piano students you will definitely want to hop on over to Amazon right now and pick up Comet’s Freezing Cold Carols.

In this hilarious musical adventure, Comet, the freezing cold reindeer, decides to quit pulling Santa’s sleigh and seek out a new, warm, and comfortable career. After many funny failures, Comet discovers a solution that lets him return to Santa’s sleigh and his love for gift distribution!

Jam-packed with late primer Christmas tunes, note reading games, warm-up exercises, a rhythm activity, sight-reading activities, a practice tracker, and a certificate of achievement, Comet’s Freezing Cold Carols will give the gift of music to your students this holiday season.

Christmas piano music for primer students

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