Practicing Piano with a Perfectionist.

When I had just turned 5, my mom gave me a jump rope. I attempted to actually JUMP ROPE with it, but could not quite master the art of skillfully whipping the rope around at the exact time needed to jump over it without tripping on it. The way she tells the story, I gave it a few tries, became frustrated, and threw a tantrum because I couldn’t do it.

Then my mom signed me up for piano lessons. Continue reading “Practicing Piano with a Perfectionist.”

Practicing With A Metronome: A Love-Hate Relationship.

Did you play a musical instrument as a child? If so, chances are that you have not-so-fond memories of practicing with a metronome.metronomeAh yes, the metronome.

My favorite teacher whom I love dearly always had me practicing with a metronome. Like all the time. I had to play my warm-up scales, arpeggios, chords and Hanon exercises with this ticking. It accompanied me during the “middle” learning stage of each and every sonatina. Continue reading “Practicing With A Metronome: A Love-Hate Relationship.”

Why Start With Piano Lessons?

So you’re thinking about starting your child with music lessons. If you’ve started to ask around about which instrument to start with, you’ve likely heard the piano recommended pretty strongly. Why start with piano lessons?

I’m a piano teacher so I realize I might be a little biased. However, in my own studies and in talking to the pediatricians, psychiatrists and school teachers in my children’s lives, I have learned that piano is often what they recommend as well. Continue reading “Why Start With Piano Lessons?”

Musical Gifts Ideas.

I used to be the kind of organized person that purchased all my Christmas gifts by Halloween. That short-lived “Organized Mom” stint is no more, and now I’m grateful for the Amazon Prime Membership that allows me to order gifts as late as December 22nd and still have them arrive on time for Christmas.

As a piano teacher, it is probably no shock to you that I love to surround my kids with toys and space that encourage music making. Musical toys also boost cognitive skills, provide continuous learning opportunities and support gross and fine motor skills. Continue reading “Musical Gifts Ideas.”

Your Role in Your Child’s Piano Practice.

Whether I’m meeting with a family new to piano lessons, I always stress with families that a RELATIONAL approach to piano is key to a student’s success. Parents who are involved in their child’s piano practice will see results and have a more pleasant experience. Continue reading “Your Role in Your Child’s Piano Practice.”

Your Child Wants To Quit Piano Lessons: Here’s Why (And What to Do About it!)

So…your child has been in piano lessons for awhile, perhaps even years. You’ve invested thousands of dollars into lessons and music. Countless hours have been spent helping with practice and transporting him to and from piano lessons. Now he’s telling you he wants to quit piano lessons.

Say, what?! Continue reading “Your Child Wants To Quit Piano Lessons: Here’s Why (And What to Do About it!)”

The Most Common Piano Practice Mistake.

Here is a little secret for you that might not surprise you too much: your child’s piano teacher can tell if he practiced.

It usually takes about 15 seconds. Sometimes, it only takes about 4 seconds. I watch a student struggle to find her starting hand position and it becomes clear that she is looking at her music for the very first time since her last lesson. Continue reading “The Most Common Piano Practice Mistake.”

4 Secret Ways to Practice Piano…Without A Piano

My mom always tells the story of how she signed me up for piano lessons at such a young age because I was a perfectionist. If something didn’t come easily to me, I became frustrated and ridiculously upset. It was when she watched me try to jump rope for the first time and sob hysterically at the fact that I couldn’t do it that she realized I needed to learn that not everything comes instantly. Sometimes you have to work for it. Continue reading “4 Secret Ways to Practice Piano…Without A Piano”

Five Things to Do Before Your Child’s First Piano Lesson.

You’ve done it! You’ve scheduled your child’s first piano lesson!

Before my daughter’s first day of kindergarten, there were a lot of things we did to prepare. I met her teacher (and tried not to cry as I hounded her with question after question). We went to the store and purchased school supplies and the same Elsa backpack that every other girl in school had. I deposited money into her lunch account and read The Kissing Hand. We did all these things because the first day of school is new and exciting and a bit scary. We wanted her to feel as confident and comfortable as possible in a new environment.

I realize sending your child off to her first piano lesson isn’t quite as big of a deal. However, there are still some things that you can do to help ensure a successful experience — for the first piano lesson and beyond. Continue reading “Five Things to Do Before Your Child’s First Piano Lesson.”

Ideas to Get Your Child to Practice Piano.

As a mom and a piano teacher, I constantly am faced with motivating students to practice. Many parents of students will call or e-mail with the age-old question: “How do you get your child to practice piano?”

If you have a child at home that you are constantly battling with over practicing, here are some tips that I’ve picked up through the years. Continue reading “Ideas to Get Your Child to Practice Piano.”