MTNA 2017 (5): Wednesday, March 22

[Click here to go back to Day 4.]

8:00am The More the Merrier: Creating Collaborative Experiences for Students of All Ages, by Sarah Alexander, Whitney Hawker, and Spring Seals. 

Sarah, Whitney, and Spring presented an informative session about simple ways to incorporate collaborative experiences into the piano lesson experience, from using duets for sight-reading or improvisation to hiring a guitarist, bassist, and drummer for a pop recital experience.

Check Whitney and Spring’s blog here: 4-D Piano Teacher blog. Read More »

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MTNA 2017 (4): Tuesday, March 21

[Click here to go back to Day 3.]

8:00am Showcase: Willis Music Company: Happy Birthday Mr. Gillock!

The Willis Piano Music showcase session celebrated the music of composer William Gillock and highlighted some new publications. One of the books I found interesting was the Accent on Two Pianos for 2 pianos, 4 hands, by William Gillock.  Read More »

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MTNA 2017 (3): Monday, March 20

[Click here to go back to Day 2.]

8:00am Faber Piano Adventures: The Power Of Technique & Artistry, by Randall Faber.

The Piano Adventures showcase session was excellent as always. Randy covered some new publications and helpful thoughts about teaching technique. Attendees received a free copy of Hanon-Faber: The New Virtuoso Pianist, the Adult Piano Adventures Popular, Book 2, and the Piano Adventures Technique & Artistry, Level 4 book. Faber’s new edition of the Hanon exercises present a selection of the Hanon exercises that have been “retooled” for the modern piano (longer strings, larger hammers, and heavier action than the piano of Hanon’s day).  Read More »

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MTNA 2017 (2): Sunday, March 19

[Click here to go back to Day 1.]

9:15am NEW Pedagogy Pics: Video Clips of Students Caught In The Act of Being Themselves, by Bruce Berr.


Bruce Berr (well-known for his wonderful column in the American Music Teacher magazine — an MTNA publication for its members) has been video recording his lessons for the past 25 years. When students start lessons with him, he gets permission and just leaves the camera on all the time. He afterwards erases clips that aren’t worth keeping.

In his session, Bruce shared a handful of student videos and made pedagogical observations with each. The first video was a clip of a student improvising for the first time. The second clip was of an early advanced student working out some technical issues in a piece by Granados. It was fun to get a glimpse into his teaching style! Read More »

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MTNA 2017 (1): Pedagogy Saturday

Attending the 2017 Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) conference in Baltimore was a fantastic experience. I look forward to sharing more details with you over the next few blog posts.

My friend Amy Chaplin (of PianoPantry.com) and I decided to carpool and make it a roadtrip to the conference. She drove from her home in Indiana to my home in Ohio, to pick me up. Neither of us anticipated this kind of weather on Friday morning, however — take a look at the visibility on the roads that morning!

Fortunately, the visibility improved as the day went on and as we drove further east. We arrived safe and sound, late Friday night.

Read More »

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MTNA 2017: App-Laudable Uses of Apps in Music Lessons

It was an honor to have the opportunity to present a session at the 2017 MTNA conference this year! My topic was App-Laudable Uses of Apps in Music Lessons.

In my session, I addressed the responsible and effective incorporation of technology before launching into a demonstration of a variety of apps for music lessons.

If you would like to download the handout from my session, please click here. (Please note that the app information in the handout is current as of March 2017).

You can check out a list of app reviews I’ve written here on my blog here.

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MTNA 2017, Here I Come!

Baltimore, here I come!

I am so excited to be traveling to the 2017 MTNA National Conference, taking place in Baltimore from March 18-22.

This year, I’m roadtripping there with my friend Amy Chaplin, of Bluffton, Indiana.

I’m sure I’ll be blogging about the conference, but you might also be interested in following more real-time photographic documentation of my adventure, on Instagram. You can follow me here.

If you will be in Baltimore too, please say hello and introduce yourself!

P.S.: Amy just wrote a great blog post at PianoPantry.com full of great tips for getting the most out of conferencing. Check it out here

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March 2017 Presentations: Method Mining

Yesterday in Lima, Ohio; today was in Findlay, Ohio… I presented for piano teachers on “Method Mining: Uncovering Nuggets of Wisdom in Old Piano Methods.”

See those piles of books? I don’t travel light for this workshop. :)

I love doing this sort of thing. And this kind of informal presentation is especially special — where we together get to stick our noses in a variety of piano methods books, uncover nuggets of wisdom from each, recognize pedagogical trends across the decades, and share our insights and experiences with different methods.

Click here to view my other workshop topics.

Next appearance: I will be presenting at the upcoming MTNA national conference in Baltimore on Sunday, March 19, 2017. My topic is: “App-laudable Uses of Apps in Music Lessons.”

Will you be in Baltimore? I’d love to meet you!

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2017 Masterclass Exchange

On Saturday, my students and I held a masterclass event, as is our annual tradition in preparation for our upcoming studio recital.

This year, I invited Loretta Cetkovic, my friend from grad school who now operates a music school in Lansing, Michigan. She was so wonderful in helping my group of students polish and perfect their pieces!

In exchange, I drove to Lansing the following day and gave a masterclass for a group of Loretta’s students. So fun.

Now here is a blast from the past! This photo is from 2014, which was the first year Loretta and I did a masterclass exchange. Here is the related blog post.

Have you ever considered doing a masterclass exchange?

P.S.: Follow me on Instagram

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2017 Blogiversary Sale

Greetings!

You haven’t heard from me in quite awhile. Life sometimes throws curve balls, and I’ve put blogging aside for a little while. I hope to be back in the swing of things soon.

But, in the meantime, I couldn’t let my blogging anniversary slip by without notice. It’s been 8 years today. Can you believe it!? Thanks for following and reading my blog, friends, and for making this a fun place to interact and share ideas.

As per the annual tradition, I’m holding a one-month Blogiversary Sale. Use the promo code 2017SALE when you check out to receive 20% off all items in my shop. The promo code is valid now through March 31st, 2017.

What can you find in my shop?

My favorite Ice Cream Interval Game

DSC_20130503_165255

A variety of rhythm cards

Rhythm Cards, Levels 1-3 Read More »

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Wednesday’s Words of Wisdom

“Good teaching is more of a giving of right questions than a giving of right answers.”

— Josef Albers

Feel free to download and share this quote or image.

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Wednesday’s Words of Wisdom

“If you want to be a master teacher, you have to be a master learner.”

— George Couros

Feel free to download and share this quote or image.

PS – Registration for the Winter 2017 session of my online course for piano teachers is available now. Learn more HERE

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