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Worksheets and drills are an accepted part of piano lessons. Theory books are available for most methods and then, of course, there are all the stand alone theory series and sheets. On the Teachers Pay Teachers site, there are so many worksheets and activities that it can make your head explode. Theory books and sheets are the most often forgotten materials in the world IMHO. Online music games and drills are more attractive to students and mitigate the forgetting situation somewhat.

Enter SproutBeat. This app from Fun and Learn Music offers over 400 worksheets and games right through your iPad, with more being added each week. You can do the worksheets right on the iPad and the screen can be cleared after use so they are ready for the next student or for review. (Yes, you can also print out the worksheets and send them home with your students.)

But wait a bit…

Do you believe that pencil and paper work tells the whole story about what a student understands or is it only a tool in total learning process?

Here are a couple of graphics from Edutopia which might help you on your way to answering that question. (Notice how I did that? I’m not sorry btw. Ask any of my students. It’s how I roll.)

 

I use the question, “How do you know that?”, all the time (rolling of eyes has occurred). But, I really want to know how students arrived at the answer they gave me. When I ask a student what the pitch is, or how long a note lasts, or what a certain chord is, I want to know that they weren’t guessing. It also helps me to clear up misconceptions.
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Another go-to for me is having students generate questions and activities for each other. This works in both class/group and individual lesson settings. One time I had two students who were both studying for the same level in their evaluations but lived over 2.5 hours apart. They used Finale NotePad to design and send questions back and forth during the entire spring semester and both aced their exams.
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So think about using both traditional worksheets, apps and games, and student generated questions/activities in your studio. Yes, it is a bit more work for you but the results will make you smile.
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