Weekly Private Lesson
Students enrolled in piano lessons meet with me once a week and the other four days are practice days. During each of our times together, we will focus on building repertoire, technique, and other musical skills such as rhythm, sight-reading, theory, and ear training. Homeleave weeks are when I teach make-up lessons, group lessons, and performance classes, so no private lessons are taught during these short weeks. Please refer to the calendar if you have any questions about the schedule.
Monthly Group Lesson
Several group lessons are offered throughout the school year. These can take the form of a workshop, focusing on a specific piano skill, or a performance class where everyone has an opportunity to share what they have been working on and receive feedback. My students look forward to group lessons and performance classes because of the fun and challenging activities and the creative, encouraging environment. I have heard rumors that my “famous” brownies add to the appeal. Check out the calendar for the scoop on these classes. Participation is required for those taking piano for UCA credit, and strongly encouraged for everyone.
Remember, the way you use your practice time will have everything to do with your progress in piano. SO, lets work together to make your practice times as productive as possible. My part will be to give you great music and fun assignments to practice, and your part will be — show up and practice! The harder you work on your assignment during the week, the faster the time goes and the happier we will both be with your playing! Life happens and occasionally there is actually a good reason for having a bad practice week–I understand that. If you feel your practice hasn’t been what it should be, please don’t just skip your lesson. We will make good use of the time anyway, so show up, own up, and we will gear up for a better week next time.
Practices are usually at the same time as your lesson, and happen the other four days of the week. Piano is a class, just like any other class, so you will want to be present and on time so you don’t get marked absent or tardy. Lunch detention is no fun.
You will need to set aside a regular time in your day when you can practice at home. Talk with your family and make a plan to get rid of distractions and interruptions so you can concentrate. Plan to practice in five sessions during the week. Here’s my practice time guidelines:
3rd and 4th grade = 30 minutes 5 times a week
5th and 6th grade = 40 minutes 5 times a week
7th – 9th grade = 50 minutes 5 times a week
If you feel like your practice time is too long, you and your parents can decide to practice in two sessions each day. Here’s an example–If you are a 4th grader, you could try playing for 15 minutes in the morning before school and for 15 minutes just before supper. You can experiment to find out what works best for your family.
Please don’t try to squeeze extra or missed practices into one long day. Learning happens much more effectively with shorter sessions spread over the entire week. Try to sit at the piano every day, even if you can’t fit in all your minutes. Ten minutes each day for a week is better than 100 minutes all at once.