What Should Piano Practice Include?

In the past, I’ve written about how piano practice shouldn’t be structured by requiring a specific length of practice time. A student who is required to practice for 30 minutes a day, for example, won’t necessarily make steady progress in his piano abilities.

So how, then, should a piano practice be structured? How can you ensure that piano practice will mark forward progress? Continue reading “What Should Piano Practice Include?”

Black Classical Composers

When we think about African American music, we tend to think about spirituals, jazz and gospel genres. To be sure, these are genres that have been created and shaped by Black composers and musicians. However, something we often overlook is Black classical music and Black classical composers.

Though I have been trained in classical music my entire life and studied music in college, I never heard names such as William Grant Still or Florence Price until recently. Many Black composers have been largely absent from the study of classical music. Let’s take a moment to learn about three of these brilliant composers and their contributions to classical music.

Continue reading “Black Classical Composers”

A Peek At Our Homeschool

This blog is typically a place where I share musical resources and piano practice tips. I thought I would do something a little bit different in this post, and share with you a peek into our homeschool world.

This coming fall, I will be homeschooling my oldest daughter again for her 6th grade year. We take what is called an eclectic approach to homeschooling. This means we don’t follow one set philosophy such as Classical or Charlotte Mason. It also means we don’t use one boxed curriculum that overs every subject. Instead, I have picked out parts from different homeschooling resources that I believe best fit my daughter’s personality and interests. Continue reading “A Peek At Our Homeschool”

The Baroque Period: Lesson 4

This lesson is part 4 of 4 that I’ve released on the Baroque period of music. These lessons are a part of my online course, Busy Kids Do Music History. Today’s lesson will review everything we’ve learned so far in the series!

To view Lesson 1, click here.

To view Lesson 2, click here.

To view Lesson 3, click here.

The creation of Baroque music was driven by the patron — the church and the wealthy.

Music was a display of wealth, talent and all things fancy. New musical forms rose in popularity, and composers of the time produced hundreds of compositions for their patrons.

Let’s review what we learned about the Baroque era of music and composers! Continue reading “The Baroque Period: Lesson 4”

Meet Our Team: The Folks Behind Busy People Do Piano

Whether you’ve been an e-mail subscriber or perhaps a student of one of my online courses, chances are that you’ve interacted with me (Carly) — the creator of Busy Moms and Busy Kids Do Piano and seen my face in all those lesson videos – hah!

But I am not the only person running the show. While there have been others along the way who have helped me with certain projects — creating my site or assisting during a webinar — there are two constants who have been by my side for years now. They make our community so special and I am constantly grateful for them. Continue reading “Meet Our Team: The Folks Behind Busy People Do Piano”

The Baroque Period: Lesson 3

This lesson is part 3 of 4 that I’ve released on the Baroque period of music. These lessons are a part of my online course, Busy Kids Do Music History.

Find Lesson 1 of the Baroque Period series here

Find Lesson 2 of the Baroque Period series here

Find Lesson 4 of the Baroque Period series here

In the last lesson, we learned about how Baroque style influenced the way instruments were used and music sounded during the Baroque years.

In this lesson, we’ll take a look at 3 of the most famous Baroque composers. We’ll learn about who their patrons were, what kind of music they wrote, and even some fun or quirky things you may not have known about them.

Continue reading “The Baroque Period: Lesson 3”

The Baroque Period: Lesson 2

This lesson is part 2 of 4 that I’ve released on the Baroque period of music. These lessons are a part of my online course, Busy Kids Do Music History.

Find Lesson 1 of the Baroque Period series here

Find Lesson 3 of the Baroque Period series here

Find Lesson 4 of the Baroque Period series here

In the last lesson, we learned about how the Baroque period was all about fancy, decorative and lavish things!

In this lesson we’ll learn how that style influenced the way instruments were used and music sounded during the Baroque years. Continue reading “The Baroque Period: Lesson 2”

THE BAROQUE PERIOD: LESSON 1

This lesson is part 1 of 4 that I’ve released on the Baroque period of music. These lessons are a part of my online course, Busy Kids Do Music History.

Lesson 1: What was happening during the Baroque period?

  1. Watch the video. 

Let’s take a quick peek at some things that were happening in the Western world at the same time as the Baroque Period.

Continue reading “THE BAROQUE PERIOD: LESSON 1”

Favorite Piano Lesson Tutorials

I’ve been creating video piano lesson tutorials  for my online piano lessons for almost 5 years. In that time, we’ve created hundreds and hundreds of videos. Some tutorials teach the very basics of playing piano. Others are for more advanced pieces. Some are show tunes or the latest Disney song that your child is singing on repeat.

While these lessons are set up in my online memberships in a very structured way — with printable materials and theory worksheets — I also share a lot of them at no cost. If you’re following me on Facebook (or YouTube) chances are you’ve watched a few of these free piano lesson tutorials.

Because I have SO MANY piano lesson tutorials available to you, I thought I’d make them easier to find. In this post, you’ll find them categorized — with the link to view them on my Facebook page — below. Continue reading “Favorite Piano Lesson Tutorials”

Repetition in Musical Learning

Maybe you’ve heard the expression, “Repetition is the mother of all learning.”

There’s a reason for this. Repetition improves speed, increases confidence and creates neural pathways in the brain that commit that skill into memory. Once we’ve been down a pathway before, it’s easier to find the second and third and fourth time around!

Obviously, repetition is an important tool in musical learning. When my piano students are working on a piece of music, I might ask them to play a section “one more time” to help them become more fluent in a skill.

But sometimes, I can tell a student is getting frustrated or even bored if I ask him to repeat a passage of his piano piece again and again. Continue reading “Repetition in Musical Learning”