Category Archives: Awards

Awards Recital Fun

January Student of the Month

Congratulations Sarah!

Congratulations to Sarah for being my January 2014 student of the month.

Sarah began lessons in 1st grade and is now in 4th grade! (Time flies when you’re having fun!) She is a beginning her classical studies and playing early music on the studio harpsichord.

She is a hard worker and has come to her lessons ready to show me the extra work she did that wasn’t even assigned! Not only has she earned a perfect lesson rating each week in January, but she also received bonus beads on her practice chain twice in January for going above and beyond the assignment.

She recently performed two pieces at the Christmas recital and participated in recorder ensemble, bell choir, and the percussion ensemble. Great job, Sarah!

When she isn’t practicing the piano, she participates in Girl Scouts and is a member of the Annapolis cycling team. Sarah also plays flute in the band at school.

Sarah will have her photo on the wall of fame for the rest of the year and she will also receive a $10 Music & Arts gift card to spend on fun music or anything else she wants.

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Fall 2010

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Fall 2013

Want to be student of the Month next year? Here is what you have to do:

  • Have a lesson rating of 5 for each week of the month.
  • Have perfect attendance for the month.
  • Have an encouraging spirit toward other students.
  • Have a positive attitude in lessons.

December Student of the Month

IMG_6941Congratulations to Annabelle for being my December 2013 student of the month.

It’s hard to believe, but Annabelle started lessons with me almost 5 years ago! (Time flies when you’re having fun!) She is a wonderful classical pianist and will be doing her first choral accompanying in the spring. She is a hard worker and has really shown a  positive attitude in lessons. She has been working on her classical repertoire as well as her Christmas music. She performed two pieces at the recital and participated in bell choir, recorder ensemble and the percussion ensemble. She really stood out during the month of December by going above and beyond just her assignment material. Great job, Annabelle!

Annabelle is in 6th grade this year and has made significant progress in her piano studies over the past year alone. She is one of the youngest students I’ve had that will be accompanying a chorus.

She will have her photo on the wall of fame for the rest of the year and she will also receive a $10 Music & Arts gift card to spend on fun music or anything else she wants.

Want to be student of the Month next year? Here is what you have to do:

  • Have a lesson rating of 5 for each week of the month
  • Have perfect attendance for the month
  • Have an encouraging spirit toward other students
  • Have a positive attitude in lessons

Congratulations Delaney!

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Delaney accompanied the Chesapeake Middle School Chorus in “One Little Candle” at the Holiday Concert on Wed Dec 18. She played beautifully. Delaney is the youngest student I’ve ever had accompany a chorus (she is in 6th grade this year). Delaney has been asked to accompany the chorus again at Festival in March!

November Student of the Month

IMG_6883Congratulations to Caroline for being my November 2013 student of the month.

Caroline has shown a fantastic willingness to learn and worked hard in November. She has been preparing not only her lesson material, but some music she’s never encountered such as advanced recorder music and a bell choir piece for the Christmas recital. She has progressed so quickly in the past few months– and that take a lot of home practice. Fantastic Job, Caroline!

Caroline is in 5th grade this year and is really off to a fantastic start. In her spare time, she participates in Girl Scouts.

Caroline will have her photo on the wall of fame for the rest of the year and she will also receive a $10 Music & Arts gift card to spend on fun music or anything else she wants.

Want to be student of the Month next year? Here is what you have to do:

  • Have a lesson rating of 5 for each week of the month
  • Have perfect attendance for the month
  • Have an encouraging spirit toward other students
  • Have a positive attitude in lessons

Piano Goals

Goals

Motivating students is a constant challenge for piano teachers. Keeping them interested and engaged while learning an instrument that takes SO MUCH practice to master is one of the hardest parts of our job and this is why parental support is so crucial.

Students who aren’t motivated by all the work the piano takes usually begin to wonder why they are doing this. They aren’t yet playing the level of music that supplies its own intrinsic reward to the player. Often they think about quitting. They lack a goal.

Coming to a lesson, getting an assignment and practicing for your next lesson doesn’t sound like a good long-term plan to me. When I took lessons as a child, I never connected with my teacher and she never connected with me. I went home and practiced the assignments but never played in a single recital, never played a single game in lessons, never felt encouraged, and never learned to take pride in my skill.  I never even knew she had other students and certainly never had the chance to take part in any parties or group activities or public performances. What a shame. (Now you know why these things are so important to me today, as a teacher!)

Students need something to focus on; they need a goal. Heck, I need a goal myself as a business owner. Students need to be actively engaged in their own learning process. Coming to a lesson only to practice for the next lesson is a passive way of learning and it didn’t motivate me as a child or as a teen, that’s for sure.

Setting and achieving goals is not just a piano lesson, it’s an important life lesson. Learning that they are capable of setting and achieving goals is a skill they can use for every situation they encounter in their lifetime. Having pride in what they do and knowing they can accomplish anything they set their mind to is empowering. Where there is a will, there is a way. I believe this absolutely.

This month my students are sitting down with their parents choosing and discussing the piano goals they will be setting for the coming academic year. Their goal sheets will be placed in their lesson binders to provide focus and to draw their attention to what they are working toward achieving by the end of the academic year.

Is there a reward involved? No, they’ll just be satisfied with the intrinsic value of achievement.

……riiiiiiiiight…….

Don’t be silly, OF COURSE there is an award. These are CHILDREN we are dealing with, not philosophers! Show me anyone who doesn’t want recognition for their hard work.

Distinguished Music Achievement Award

Congratulations, Annabelle

MSMTA Elementary Distinguished Music Achievement Award

MSMTA Elementary Distinguished Music Achievement Award

This prestigious award, the highest award a student can earn from the Maryland State Music Teacher’s Association, was presented to Annabelle Mayo, entering 6th grader at Severna Park Middle School. Annabelle began working toward this award in 3rd grade and completed the requirements in May 2013.

MSMTA Distinguished Music Achievement Award

MSMTA Distinguished Music Achievement Award

Students who study with a member teacher of the Maryland State Music Teacher’s Association are required to accumulate 350 points from 5 different event types over a 5 year period in order to earn this award. Annabelle successfully accumulated over 500 points by participating in the Maryland State Theory and Keyboard exams, Maryland Spring Festival Piano Solo Competitions,the AAMTA’s annual Fall at the Mall, performing clarinet in her school band, a public performance on harpsichord at Reynold’s Tavern in downtown Annapolis, and community service performance on piano for the patients of Hospice of Chesapeake in Edgewater.

Annabelle earned the highest rating of “Superior” at this year’s MSMTA Spring Solo Festival- Piano Competition. She performed J.S. Bach’s Invention in B-flat Major and Beethoven’s Bagatelle “Fur Elise”. She also earned the following studio awards this year: MTNA 4-years of Musical Study Certificate, Listening Trophy, Practice Award Ribbon, One Minute Club member, and Student of the Month.

Annabelle is a talented pianist and has set an fantastic example for all of my students in the HiltonMusic Studio. We are all so proud of her accomplishments!

Studio Awards Recital

Congratulations to all my students!

Congratulations to all my students!

It’s been a wonderful year of teaching and my students are now beginning their summer lessons. They are keeping up their skill level and even progressing in their classical studies this summer. They are dedicated and motivated pianists and I am certainly proud of each and every one of them! This weekend I held our end-of-the-year Studio Awards Recital. My students having been working since last September to earn these awards. They set goals, worked toward those goals, and achieved those goals. This weekend they finally received all of the awards they earned this year. Here is what students who study with me accomplished this year (and every year, for that matter!)….

Listening Award

Listening Award

Practice Award

Practice Award

PIANOlympic Medal

PIANOlympic Medal

Blue Ribbon Practice Winners

Blue Ribbon Practice Winners

Practice Award- My students are an amazing bunch- they all come prepared for their next lesson and they demonstrate a readiness to move on and progress to new material. They earned a rating of 4 or 5 for each lesson for the entire academic year and earned the Practice award.

Listening Award Winners

Listening Award Winners

Listening Trophy- Many students earned the Listening Trophy by earning 25 points through a combinations of listening to classical music on CD and attending or performing in concerts themselves.

PIANOlympic Gold Medal Winners

PIANOlympic Gold Medal Winners

PIANOlympic Gold Medal- Students earned this award by accomplishing a minimum of 8 technical challenges on the piano from their PIANOlympic Book (authored by Ellen Winner).

Student of the Month Certificate

Student of the Month Certificate

Student of the Month Certificate Each month a student is picked by me that demonstrates qualities above and beyond those that are expected. They earn the highest rating each week for the month, they work ahead and play beyond what was assigned, they demonstrate a positive attitude in lessons and are encourager to others. These students have their picture on the “wall of fame” for the year and receive a $10 Music & Arts gift card to spend on anything they like. At the Awards Recital, they received a very special Student of the Month Certificate.

One Minute Club Treats

One Minute Club Treats

One Minute Club- These students began working on flashcards in January. To become members of this exclusive club, they must play a random set of notes spanning 4-octaves on the piano in under 60 seconds….3 times consecutively! These students earn a $3 Menchies Gift Card and receive special treats at both the Double Scoop and Awards Recital. This year, they wore Mardi Gras beads at the recital.

Goal Achievement Certificate

Goal Achievement Certificate

Goal Achievement Certificate In September, my students set goals for the awards they want to work on for the year. Several of my students met and even exceeded their goals this year. Those students were honored at the recital. Setting a goal, working toward a goal and achieving that goal is more than just a piano lesson — it’s a life lesson!

Classics for Kids Trophy & Listening Trophy Winner

Classics for Kids Trophy & Listening Trophy Winner

Classics For Kids- This program is sponsored by Cincinnati Public Radio WGUC and has a number of radio programs on the internet designed for children to learn about classical music composers. Classics for Kids® has been honored with a National Community Impact Award for Engagement by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting in recognition of its innovative on-air and online services for children. My students earn a Classic for Kids trophy and certificate for completion of 10 composer radio broadcasts (4-5 radio broadcasts each) and the corresponding activity sheets.

MSMTA 2013-2014 Spring Festival- Piano Solo Competition Team

MSMTA 2013-2014 Spring Festival- Piano Solo Competition Team

MSMTA Piano Festival Certificate- This year my competition Team did an outstanding job and they all received glowing critiques from the judges. These students performed (to perfection) 2 contrasting classical pieces from memory at the Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center on the University of Maryland College Park Campus in May 2013.

MTNA 2 & 4-year study Certificate

MTNA 2 & 4-year study Certificate

MTNA Study in Music Certificate- This year 3 of my students were honored with the Music Teacher’s National Award for 2 years of musical study and 1 student earned the 4-years of musical study award. These certificates are issued only once every 2 years and are a testament to the dedication these students have for their piano studies.