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#958364 - 01/21/08 11:23 AM Evaluation form for piano students
Crystal Chow Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 10/13/05
Posts: 2
Loc: Hong Kong
To give a motivation to piano students is very important. Besides planning some regular recitals for students, I think a evaluation form for piano student could stimulate their desire for goals chasing as well as giving a clear proceeding of learning for both student and parents. Did anyone set a form before?

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#958365 - 01/21/08 11:32 AM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
keystring Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 14113
Loc: Canada

#958366 - 01/21/08 12:10 PM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 14922
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Crystal, no, but I think its is a great idea. Also a good way to communicate with the parents on the student's progress, and just good overall practice. I try to do this on a regular basis verbally, but there are those parents I don't get to see in between lessons. Has anyone already done this and what is your procedure?
private piano/voice teacher FT

#958367 - 01/21/08 02:13 PM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
Stanny Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/06
Posts: 1461
I think it's a great idea. I try to communicate with my parents who don't come to lessons through email weekly. But This sounds good, as well as a parent teacher conference!

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Certified Piano Teacher, American College of Musicians

#958368 - 01/21/08 02:17 PM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
keystring Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 14113
Loc: Canada
This is for children?

#958369 - 01/21/08 02:31 PM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
Betty Patnude Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/11/07
Posts: 4896
Loc: Puyallup, Washington
This is a Questionnaire I give to parents. Is this what you mean? I also have other questionnaires I've used over the years. Anyone interested in these kinds of things?

DATE ________________

STUDENT'S NAME _________________________________
PARENT'S NAME _________________________________

Please check mark any and all items which apply to your child.

1. My child is studying piano mainly:
__ Because s/he wants to
__ Because we and s/he both want this experience
__ Because we want him/her to, but s/he does not resist having lessons
__ At our insistence and s/he would much rather not have lessons
2. Most weeks my child usually practices a total for the week of:
__ Less than one hour
__ 1-2 hours
__ 2-3 hours
__ 3-5 hours
__ 5-7 hours
__ More than 7 hours
3. My child generally:
__ Accepts responsibility for his/her practice
__ Needs to be reminded to practice, but does not make a fuss when reminded
__ Has a negative attitude toward practicing
4. Regarding the amount of practice time:
__ I feel regular practice (6-7 days weekly, a specified amount of time) is essential and this routine is broken only under extreme circumstances.
__ While practice is important, there may be occasional times when my child is unable to practice as regularly or as much as is ideal because of varying other activities and commitments.
__ My child is very involved in sports or other activities so that many times during the year the practice is quite limited.
__ My child finds school work very demanding and as a result does not always have time to practice very much.
__ We do not feel regular practice is necessary for our child's piano lesson experience.
5. Regarding the practicing situation and environment:
__ My child can practice anytime s/he wishes in a location of the house that is free from disturbance of TV, stereo, family members, telephone, etc.
__ My child must schedule his practice in order to practice undisturbed, but most days this can be done without too much difficulty.
__ Our situation makes it difficult for my child to find undisturbed practice time.
6. Regarding actual practice time:
__ I feel the amount of time my child practices is adequate for his age and level of advancement and for what s/he and we feel s/he should be accomplishing.
__ I would like my child to practice more. Please encourage this in lessons and know that you have our support at home.
__ We are seriously concerned that our child's practice is not nearly enough and feel that the teacher, parents and child should work out a solution to the problem.
__ I feel my child has reasonable good work habits and uses his practice time well.
__ My child's practice is sloppy and is not directed toward doing things well.
__ My child would benefit from more specific or detailed written assignments.
7. I feel the following things help motivate my child to practice:
__ Enjoying playing the piano
__ Pieces s/he especially enjoys
__ Performance goals such as classes, recitals, auditions
__ Earning points
__ Achieve specific or general goals such as finish a piece, complete a book
__ Advance to harder music
__ Being able to play new or old pieces easily and quickly
__ Having to work very hard to learn a new piece
__ Having expectations and attitudes
__ Parent expectations and attitudes
__ Keeping a practice record
__ Having a parent sit with or listen to him/her practice
__ Not being too busy with extra activities
__ Specific practice steps written down in assignment book
__ Competition with peers
__ My child like to do well in most tasks s/he undertakes
__ My child is usually self-motivated in accepting responsibility
8. Concerning playing for friends or relatives, my child:
__ Enjoys playing the piano for friends and/or relatives
__ Is very reluctant to play for friends and/or relatives
__ Enjoys sitting down to play the piano apart from practicing assignments
__ Old favorites from lessons
__ Pop, folk or church songs
__ Improvising and must "messing around"
__ Rote songs (such as Chopsticks, Heart and Soul)
9. Please give the reasons you see that your child has or has not progressed as you have expected or would have liked, during the most recent 3-month period:
10. What can the teacher do to help contribute to a more satisfactory experience?
11. Our piano, manufactured by ________is a:
___ Spinet ___ Console ___ Upright ___ Grand ___ Keyboard
12. We own a metronome which is in good working order: ___ Yes ___ No
13. My child has piano music of his level which he can play on his own for fun: ___ Folk Music ___ Church Music ___ Popular Music
14. My child plays t he following instrument(s) in addition to piano:__________
15. My child sings in a choir at: ___ School ___ Church ___ Other
16. Please add anything you feel would be helpful to communicate to the piano teacher:
17. Do you have any questions you would like to ask at this time?

#958370 - 01/21/08 02:37 PM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
Betty Patnude Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/11/07
Posts: 4896
Loc: Puyallup, Washington
I have used these too, sometime the questions go home all at once for an older child, or you can ask questions at lessons, or break it down into shorter written form. You might want a parent signature that they have read it.

Questions…..All About Me!

I am having lessons because
___I want to ___My parents want me to ___other reason _____________________

I like to practice hard new music
1 2 3 4 5

I like to practice easy new music
1 2 3 4 5

I like to polish music I am playing
1 2 3 4 5

I like to memorize

1 2 3 4 5
I like my parents to listen to me practice
1 2 3 4 5

I like my parents to help me practice
1 2 3 4 5

I like to practice technique and warm-ups
1 2 3 4 5

I like to practice sight-reading
1 2 3 4 5

I practice as much as I think I need to
1 2 3 4 5

I could find more time to practice if I wanted
1 2 3 4 5


I get nervous playing in group lessons
1 2 3 4 5

I get nervous playing in performance classes
1 2 3 4 5

I get nervous playing in recitals
1 2 3 4 5

I get nervous playing for auditions, festivals or contests
1 2 3 4 5

I get nervous playing accompaniments
1 2 3 4 5

I get nervous playing in ensembles
1 2 3 4 5

I get nervous playing duets
1 2 3 4 5

I like to perform on the piano for
___Myself ___Piano Studio Recitals ___School Talent ___Family
___WSMTA Recitals ___Church ___Friends ___Community Service ___Group Lessons ___Performance Classes ___Accompanying ___Duets


I like to listen to current popular music
1 2 3 4 5

I like to listen to classical music
1 2 3 4 5

I like to listen to jazz
1 2 3 4 5

I like to listen to old popular music, musicals, standards
1 2 3 4 5

I like to listen to church music
1 2 3 4 5

I like to attend concerts
1 2 3 4 5

I like to read and study about composers and music history
1 2 3 4 5


I like to do worksheets
1 2 3 4 5

I like to analyze music I play
1 2 3 4 5

I like to do keyboard theory, chords, scales, harmonize, transpose
1 2 3 4 5

I like to talk about and drill on theory in group lessons
1 2 3 4 5

I like to do theory on the computer
1 2 3 4 5

I like to do ear training
1 2 3 4 5

I like to improvise
1 2 3 4 5

I like to compose
1 2 3 4 5

What are you asked to do in your lessons that you think you should not have to do?

What are you asked to do in your lessons that you would like to do less of?

What would you like to do that you don't have a chance to do?

What would you like to do that you would like to do more of?

What are your favorite parts of piano lessons?

Please return this Questionnaire to your piano teacher.

#958371 - 01/21/08 07:59 PM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
Akira Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/27/07
Posts: 1645
Loc: Los Angeles, CA
I'm not a teacher, but would like to share my thoughts anyway (hope that's okay with you).

I'll preface what I'm about to say with , "I could be wrong..."

I don't think a form format will accomplish what you hope it will. Firstly, a form is a canned format and addresses a set of issues. Your students are people, each with their own unique strengths and shortcomings.

For a parent, I think the spirit of the form is a wonderful idea, however if you really wish to communicate on a periodic basis how the student is doing, I would just write them a free form evaluation discussing the student's progress.

For the student, I don't think either the form or free form evaluation is an effective format, as this only communicates information one way. I think that discussing their progress periodically face to face is far better, as it provides two way communication between yourself, allowing the student the opportunity to give you their feedback, discuss their frustrations and concerns, as well as their accomplishments. Its also an excellent opportunity for you to provide them with, perhaps, some badly needed encouragement. Something that a piece of paper will never be able to accomplish.

No offense intended to any teachers that use forms. Just voicing my personal opinion. \:\)

I do applaud your effort, however, in taking what appears to be a deep concern for the benefit of your students.

#958372 - 01/21/08 08:28 PM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 14922
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Akira, I think a form would be more a means of organizing thoughts rather than simply trying to fit a student into a box. So it could be something where you have a list of certain activities: practice effectiveness, theory understanding, technical work, etc. and then provide specific comments that speak to how the student is doing in each area. At least, that is how I would want to do it.
private piano/voice teacher FT

#958373 - 01/22/08 09:06 AM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
keystring Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 14113
Loc: Canada
Motivation for me means moving toward a goal, and knowing how to do that. That is a thing that would be defined broadly between teacher and student in the beginning, and through the tasks that are set from week to week for practicing in lessons. The feedback I receive is the assessment, but it is in the context of how I am coming along in reaching these goals, and what changes may be in order along the way in order to get there. I would not see such an assessment as a motivation, but simply a tool.

If motivation is meant in the sense of how a report card can be a "motivator" in that a student works hard because he wants to have good grades, I would not want that kind of relationship as an adult student. We are notorious for trying for perfection. It takes time to learn that playing is a physical skill that needs to be developed in stages, and imperfection is ok. Many adult students tie themselves into knots trying to play perfectly, when in fact error is a golden opportunity to improve something. When we gain the freedom to dare to make mistakes in a lesson and know that this is more than ok, we start being able to play better because a great deal of inhibition is gone. I would welcome an assessment, but it has to be in the spirit of "let's see what can be worked on in order to reach these goals".

As a parent of a small child I would like to know how he is doing. I would not want my child to view the assessment as something where he has to please me by getting good marks (motivator) but as a means of guidance.

My child was almost 13 when he began music lessons, and he was there because he wanted to master the instrument and learn to play well: skill was the goal. He was self-directed toward the task his teacher set before him, and parental involvement would have been seen as interference. For both of us what motivates is being given the tools to improve playing skills, and this includes any assignment that will make that start to happen. A competition, exam, "fun piece" might actually be anti-motivational if it meant we had to work toward the needs of the event and not be able to work on what needs to be learned. If I am given a piece, I tend to ask myself "what will this teach me?" and if it does not tend to teach me anything, it will be hard to remain interested. I think where a student is at may be part of the equation.

In that light, an assessment would be seen as a welcome tool in order to be more clear on what needs to be done in order to get where we need to be, rather than a motivator per se. Someone else, however, who is not that keen on practicing or even taking up the instrument might need that kind of push.

#958374 - 01/22/08 09:56 AM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 14922
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
For me, this assessment would be another means by which I could communicate to the parents, especially to those whom I do not see often, on how the student is doing. Not necessarily for motivation, as I provide that (hopefully ;\) ) in the lessons. It wouldn't be a grading system or anything. Just communication to keep the parents in the loop on things. I would not use nor would I need it for my adult students. I try to make phone calls to parents if I don't see them in between lessons, but it's not consistent, and I certainly don't want it to be something that I do only when things aren't going well.
private piano/voice teacher FT

#958375 - 01/22/08 03:02 PM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
keystring Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 14113
Loc: Canada
The communication aspect is an excellent idea. Is it also possible that parents and students don't always know that they are free to communicate wishes or concerns?

#958376 - 01/23/08 02:19 AM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
Candywoman Online   content
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/14/03
Posts: 1015
I would never give an evaluation form like Betty's, although it was interesting to read, and gave me some ideas. I actually thought it was a bit Orwellian. Perhaps these families don't want to tell you stuff you could figure out by careful observation of their family and casual questioning of their child. I think most people fall into a pattern of practicing that is hard for them to change.

Plus I don't have time for such a form, and it doesn't pay. Most of my students stick with me, so I've even abandoned report cards, which I once gave. The report cards ended up just pointing out people's natural gifts. Most people know what needs improving, and the result of all that information is they just have to keep coming for lessons anyways. It takes me an hour to think of a child in enough detail to write a report card. Nobody pays me for that hour.

I sometimes tell students what they excel at and I think this is a more memorable experience for them.

I also feel it's my job to choose music that I feel suits each child. Since I'm usually successful, there's little point in getting them to lead me on a wild goose chase, down a confusing path of their own whims and desires instead of the tried and true methods I have devised.

Finally, I never want the parents to get in a questioning frame of mind. It's better to lull them into submission! Ha!

#958377 - 01/23/08 07:05 PM Re: Evaluation form for piano students
okietransplant Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/28/07
Posts: 26
Loc: Texas
This may be off topic, but you might want to check out www.thepianolessonseries.com. It's a piano curriculum that combines an assignment notebook, theory, scales, chords, etc., and music history. It's leveled kind of like Guild, but a little harder. It was developed by a teacher in our area, and although I don't use her books, I am thinking about it. I do like the concepts that she has that there are certain things everyone needs to learn. If the students haven't learned their scales, for example, they don't get their new lesson book until they do! You would be surprised how students can "wriggle" out of things like theory and scales when they don't want to do them.


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