For my skill sharing workshop I chose to show Josh how I approach sight reading as he is also a pianist but although he has done some exams in the past he mostly plays by ear and improvises and he wants to improve this skill to achieve his ambitions to work in music.
First of all I spoke to Josh about his level of playing and reading to help me choose a piece which wasn’t too hard or too easy, I wanted him to feel successful at the end of the session.
I chose a duet piece which was moving up and down in steps and thirds and that wasn’t too fast as this seemed about the right level after our chat. The idea was that josh would read one part and play it through once and then we would play the duet together which means he had another challenge to stay absolutely in time with me which also helps sight reading skills.
I explained to Josh the important things to look out for like key signature and time signature and to set a pulse at which he could keep going and not to stop to correct mistakes as the most important thing about sight reading is keeping going no matter what.
I reminded him to set his pulse and I counted out loud to help him stay in time.
I think the session went well and we achieved the goals we set. I think I explained things very clearly and slowly to Josh which really helped him and gave him things to think about to develop his sight reading in future. I perhaps should have let Josh count out loud himself as this would help him develop his own sense of pulse
Josh says “ I enjoyed working on sight reading with William, he explained everything really well and I learned that the most important thing was to keep going in sight reading but I think I could have done my own counting as I didn’t really need the extra help of William counting out loud.