What I love:
- Reminders at the top of each page to STOP & look for patterns before playing
- Reminder to choose a slow tempo
- Short sightreading samples perfect for lesson starters (or enders)
- Very gradual increase of difficulty
- Dynamics include
Goal - read as many measures as you can in a row with accurate rhythm, notes, dynamics, etc.
When you make a mistake your score restarts at zero and you move on to the next sample. (Each sample increases in difficulty)
Tips for success:
LOOK BEFORE YOU LEAP...
This one is so hard for some students who just want to dive in and play without analyzing patterns or looking ahead to prepare for challenging spots. I made the rule that as soon as I hear a sound from the piano, the race starts. But they are free to "ghost-play" it first by silently playing through the sample if they wish.
SLOW AND STEADY WINS THE RACE
I choose a s u p e r s l o w tempo and play the sightreading excerpt along with the student. This helps them hear rhythmic and note errors immediately.
I use post-it flags with each student's name # of consecutive measures earned to track where they left off. The more measures the student accumulates, the more careful they become at following these tips, because the pressure is on not to start over at zero.
Other sightreading resources & ideas:
Diane Hidy's Sightreading Flashcards.
Interesting Post on Sightreading Research at Foxx Piano Studio
354 Free Reading Exercises in C Position by Michael Kravchuk