Wednesday, April 10, 2013

"Mountains to Climb" Practice Incentive

"Give me Mountains to Climb...
Give me something that's gonna make me better than I was."
As I listened to these lyrics in the inspiring song entitled "Mountains to Climb" by Erin Thomas (available for free download on youth  site) it sparked the idea for a practice incentive.  A few ideas that come to mind are
Scale Mountain (Scales)
Rocky Rhythm Mountain (Rhythm Drills)
Sightseeing Mountain (Sightreading)
Echo Mountain (Ear Training)
??????????????? MountainTheory

What other mountains would you add to the list?

I want to encourage my students to set personally challenging goals to reach on their musical "Mountains to Climb" and make a visual to track their progress.  The end result I hope for in providing piano lessons for my own children is not just to have them learn to play the piano, but to learn the character traits that come from mastering difficult skills... discipline, persistence, hope, patience, etc.
 The analogy in this song also reminded me of inspiring message several months ago.
"I heard President Spencer W. Kimball, in a session of conference, ask that God would give him mountains to climb. He said: “There are great challenges ahead of us, giant opportunities to be met. I welcome that exciting prospect and feel to say to the Lord, humbly, ‘Give me this mountain,’ give me these challenges.”1  (read the entire article by Henry B. Eyring "Mountains to Climb".
I love that perspective!  Rather than taking the easy road, true growth occurs when we welcome challenges and question "What can I learn from this?" rather than asking "Why me?"
We all encounter different "mountains" in life as is portrayed in this short video clip.  Obviously the mountains in my students and children's future will be much more difficult than "Sightseeing Mountain" but I hope to help them see that they can do hard things... big or small.

Climbing Piano Mountains post (including Mountains to Climb tracking sheet)

I particularly relate to the challenges of the mother trying to rush her children out the door.  It's easy for me to lose perspective at times in the busyness of everyday life with the deadlines, pressures and responsibilities that are upon me as a mother of 6.  I love how children can sometimes be our greatest teachers!


  1. Great post! Of course I wished I would have watched the video BEFORE I put on my makeup. ;) Love the incentive idea too...

    1. The video is definitely a tear jerker for me too. It helps me remember to count my blessings of good health, happy marriage and sweet children. Glad you liked it :)

    2. I'm looking for sheet music to this song. Any ideas where I can find it?

    3. I am not sure if there is sheet music for this song although Deseret Book was my first thought since they often carry lds music/songbooks. I couldn't find it there. It was composed by "a youth" for the "For Strength of Youth" theme so it may not even be published yet.