Over the summer all of my students completed 5 one-hour lessons to keep up their technical skills, theory, and sight reading which get them ahead of the game for the new school year. They were all SO ready for September piano lessons and back-to-school! Right now they are busy with school activities and homework but they all make time to practice for their lessons. After all, music is an equal part of their educations- if Math isn’t optional, neither is music! Just look back to the ancient Greeks and their educational systems- we still base our education on these subjects today: grammar, rhetoric, and logic, geometry, arithmetic, MUSIC, and astronomy.
This year, our piano hands are becoming filled with stars (see photo)- each star represents one year in piano. My students are dedicated and have been studying with me for years! I couldn’t be more proud. This year we are working on memorization skills- our “practice” beads have been traded in for “memorization” beads. Every time my one of my students memorizes a page of music, they receive a bead for their chain…and the chains are growing already- WOW
October is time for Halloween party music, so each year we take a lesson to go “shopping” for a piece. This means that I play through a number of Halloween songs and the student gets to choose which piece they want to play at the party. I think its a tie between this and Game Week for my students all-time favorite lessons of the year!
I know it feels too early for Christmas, but not in the piano studio! Some of my more advanced students have already been preparing their Christmas pieces for a couple of months- it going to be a great concert this year; bell choir, percussion ensemble, Jazz Christmas songs, as well as our favorite traditional Christmas pieces. Stay Tuned!
It’s almost time for back-to-school and my studio will be gathering together on Sunday for our 5th annual back-to-school party! My returning students start by performing a song for their friends. All of my students (old and new) will be updating their lesson binders, piano key chains, some will receive new materials, meet their new “piano buddy”, make some great sidewalk chalk pictures, play some games, make their own ice cream sundae, and generally have lots of fun!
In the meantime, I am hard at work organizing and getting everything ready for the new school year. In the photo below, I have organized the flashcards I use most often. Photo boxes marked with the contents gives me easy access to topics I may want to cover with a student in their lesson.
In the meantime, I am still organizing my crafts and other supplies to create some new fun games, have materials ready for our party, and introduce some new fun projects for this year.
A big hit in my studio are the practice chains. Each year my students begin a new chain at the back-to-school party by adding their name, a handmade treble clef, and some decorative starter beads. Then throughout the course of the school year, they add more beads each week depending on how well they demonstrated a completed assignment. Here are the new practice chains….oh, not much to see right now (they look so lonely), but just wait until after the party… they’ll be AWESOME!
My students will be arriving this Sunday for our 4th Annual Back-to-School party. This is a really wonderful opportunity to meet new piano friends, re-acquaint with old piano friends and play some music for each other.
Of course we do lots of others things as well like make practice chains, learn new rhythm games, play some bonus bead games, and enjoy a make-your-own ice cream sundae. All of my students will go home with a great back-to-school package this year!
We’ll have lots of fun and be off to a fantastic new academic year of piano! Its the most wonderful time of the year!!