Remember that post a few weeks ago about memory and different types of learners? Well I wanted to create something I could share with my students. Especially with my older students (such as the teens or college students), I’d love for them to realize which techniques work better for them. Thus I created a Memory Checklist in a handout form!

There are two to a page to save paper but I hope you can share these with students and help them discover which type of learning works best for them. Encourage them to try a few new techniques and then see which helped them or didn’t really click with them. Maybe they’ll find a new idea that really helps them memorize faster! Or maybe they’ll show you which tricks did not work and you can rule out a certain type of learning style that doesn’t really help them.

Here are a few of the checklist items I included:

❏ Close the lid of the piano and try playing a section on the lid. Can you remember your fingering and rhythms without hearing the sound?

❏ Make a memory map of this piece on the back of this page (Teachers see this post to help students on this task if you haven’t done this before)

❏ Record yourself on a phone or iPad (sound only or video). Then listen to the playback. Mark any parts in your music that need more work. Add smiley faces to parts you played well!

❏ Close your eyes and play through the piece or section. Try to focus less on fingering or worry about a certain spot. Instead listen for the phrasing and musicality of your playing.

Hope you’re all enjoying the end of summer – good luck as you start a new teaching semester!

Download here: Memory Checklist

Author: Whitney

Whitney Hawker, NCTM, teaches group and private piano at Weber State University, Utah. She loves surprising students with the perfect piece or a new exciting game! After graduate school, she missed sharing ideas and resources daily with colleagues so she and her friend, Spring, began blogging together at 4DPianoTeaching.com

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