Welcome to Cadenza for teachers. Back in Part 1, I waxed poetic about Cadenza’s student features, including features for students to:
Here in Part 2, we’ll take a look at a couple of Cadenza highlights from the teacher’s perspective.
Who’s Practiced, What, How Much, and When?
From our main student-list page, we can see our students’ last login, and get quick access to our private notes on each, access to lesson history via the “list of lessons,” direct access to the latest lesson, and a “new lesson” button to make best use of those too-short lessons.
A quick click on “list of lessons” will get us a synopsis of a student’s lesson history which allows us and our students, with a brief scan, to see the bigger picture. Here, in my student persona, we can see four practice sessions, some better than others. Maybe it’s just a bad week, or maybe it’s part of a bigger pattern, but it’s easier to address if we can see it clearly.
“I Didn’t Know You Wanted Me to Do That (So I Didn’t do Anything)”
How many times have we, as teachers, had a student say they weren’t sure what to practice so they didn’t practice at all? Hopefully not many, but there will always be that one little lost lamb (LLL) who benefits more than average from specific — often VERY specific — practice guidance and direction. The challenging part is to keep those lessons moving along but still be able jot down specific enough suggestions to keep LLL shepherded all week. Personally, I just don’t enjoy the tension of those minutes ticking by as I scribble detailed practice instructions into their notebook while my young pianist either retreats into quiet dreamland or throws himself into an energetic exploration of the “forte” capabilities of my fortepiano! Cadenza may save another life.
Let’s say I’m galloping into a new session with a student. I’ve clicked on “new lesson”, which brought me here to enter a few specific instructions: find themes 1 and 2 (check when completed) and learn each theme (play 3 times correctly). Other options I could have chosen from were “repeat” x times; and “duration”, work on the assignment for a specified time. I chose “repeat 3 times”, but you might choose more or fewer repetitions. To streamline the process, Cadenza has predictive typing — it anticipates frequently-repeated phrases or words, thus saving you precious keystrokes in the future. In the upper-right corner, you can see that I make the week’s target five practices, and that’s what will help decide the student’s automatic points and badges.
A quick click on “save”, and this is what LLL will see when they log into their account and start practicing:
It’s clear and concise, and there’s something about unchecked tick boxes encourages more active participation than simply skimming instructions (if they get read at all!) from a page of notes. No tick, not done, no points. Many students need it to be that simple.
Cadenza points and badges
Stay tuned for more features and ideas from teachers in the trenches. To really explore Cadenza, we still need to wait til the official release at the beginning of April, but I’m quite certain it will be a game changer for teachers and students alike!