I tried to make it reasonable, as well. It's not always a five-year-old's fault that he didn't practice, and children have a very strong sense of conscience. They need to have a way to still feel good about their efforts on the violin when Mom made them go to Aunt Flossie's birthday party across town and didn't help them practice on a certain day. As long as that doesn't happen all the time, it's okay. I tell them that five times a week is the bare minimum, but if they practice every single day, Mrs. Niles will jump up and down. And I never forget to make a great big deal of jumping up and down on those weeks of seven-day success!
Here it is, with my permission to copy it for your students:
Laurie Niles is from Pasadena, California. Biography
Please consider supporting Violinist.com by becoming a sponsor, and reaching our dedicated community of violin professionals, students and fans!