A few months ago, I shared how to make a little practice counter out of beads and string. Today, I have a bigger version to show you that is made from wooden pieces.

It is really simple to make and it’s a great practice tool. This would be an easy gift for teachers to make for students, an activity for a group class or an at-home project for parents and students to do together.

You just need a few supplies:

  1. 10 1″ wooden toy wheels
  2. 2 ball knobs (1.5″ with 3/16″ hole)
  3. 1 12″ dowel rod
  4. your choice of paint colors
  5. paint brush

To assemble:

  1. Paint all of the wooden pieces in your choice of colors. Allow paint to dry.
  2. Place one end of the dowel rod into one of the wooden knobs.
  3. Place all 10 wooden beads on the dowel rod.
  4. Place the 2nd wooden knob on to the other end of the dowel rod.

The knobs should fit securely onto the dowel rod with out any glue, but if you could add some glue into the opening of the knob if you are concerned about it coming loose.

That’s it! It’s a super easy project.

Use this practice counter to teach students to practice with repetition. Just slide the beads across the counter to represent each repetition of practice. For some students, you might prefer to slide a few beads over ahead of time and do fewer than 10 repetitions. This tool can be used to track repetitions of an entire song, but for many students, you’ll want to break the music into smaller sections and teach your students to isolate problematic parts of their music.

A practice counter is handy to have in a music studio, and it’s even better if every student has one on their piano at home!

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  1. Thank you. As a piano teacher of over 30 years I’ve learned that practicing for a set time is not really productive. Kids can sit and take up time with little learned! Set repetitions are much better! Love the counter!

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