posted about that here.
That is certainly helpful, but it's a bit cumbersome to do for EVERYTHING they play, and I still want them to think before playing on everything. So, here's a quick solution.
I tell the students that they are the pilots of the piece, and I'm the co-pilot. Then, just as though we are checking the plane's systems before take-off, we'll go through the checklist below. I call out each item and as the student does or checks it, he answers "check." The plane can't take off until all systems are go!
1. Adjust bench for height and distance.
2. Sit straight and tall!
3. Check starting keys and place hands.
4. Check time signature.
5. Check key signature.
6. Check first dynamic sign.
7. Check tempo/mood.
8. Hear a few measures in your head before starting.
Here's a quick draft of my checklist. Click this link to download it. (And as soon as I get a chance, I'm going to learn a better method of embedding PDF docs!)