Giveaways, repertoire / methods

Piano Pronto “Prelude” Book with Teacher Duets – Giveaway

Remember when I blogged about Jennifer Eklund’s music last Winter?   Today, I want to tell you a little bit more about her self-published piano method, Piano Pronto.

Piano-Pronto-Piano-Lesson-Books-Music-for-all-ages-and-all-stages-10

I haven’t been experimenting with the Piano Pronto books for very long yet, but already I can see some reasons why Piano Pronto is unique from the piano methods available from the major publishers:

  • Piano-Pronto-Prelude-book-300x300It is an all-in-one book.  Lessons introducing new concepts, prep exercises to learn, and simple theory questions to answer are all included within the book.  This makes it easier for the teacher to supplement with a variety of types of music.  Or, the method can even serve as the supplement to a different method!  
  • It begins with on-staff reading.  Some students do not need a period of pre-staff notation — especially older beginners or those who have learned staff notation at school.
  • It uses a huge variety of familiar folk tunes and classical themes.  This allows students to use their ears a great deal as they learn to read music.  It also can be motivating for students to be able to play tunes they are familiar with.
  • It does not shy away from teaching rhythm concepts such as eighth notes (taught in the Prelude book) or 6/8 time (taught in the Movement 2 book) early on.
  • It teaches key signatures early on (in the Movement 1 book).
  • It requires students to move around the keyboard early on (starting in the Prelude Book).

If you haven’t taken a look at Piano Pronto before, you can learn more by browsing the preview pages and audio samples on Jennifer’s website.  

Being self-published has its advantages, including being able to interact directly with one’s audience.  Jennifer manages an active forum on Facebook where teachers can ask questions and share success stories.  A few weeks ago, I posted there to ask Jennifer if there was any chance that she would be releasing teacher duets anytime soon to go with her method books.  Jennifer responded almost immediately and set to work writing teacher duets for the “Prelude” book.  The eBook for those teacher duets is now available here!   After purchase, you can print a copy from the PDF or load it onto your favorite score reader on your iPad.

In celebration of this new release, Jennifer has offered to sponsor a giveaway.  Two randomly-chosen winners will receive a FREE copy of the Piano Pronto “Prelude” book and the corresponding teacher duets (U.S. winners will receive hardcopies while international winners will receive digital copies).  To enter, please leave a comment on this post describing which unique aspect of the Piano Pronto method (from the list above) intrigues you the most!  Enter by Wednesday, August 6 at midnight Eastern time.

Don’t forget to visit Jennifer’s Piano Pronto Discussion Group on facebook and request to join.  There, you will find many other resources relating to Piano Pronto, including a transfer assessment guide and a guide to Jennifer’s supplemental music.

Update: Jennifer is running a rare 20% off sale from August 1st through August 5!  Use the promo code SCHOOL20.

Professional Development

Google Hangouts #3 and #4

In case you didn’t have the chance to watch the video from last Friday’s Google Hangout, here it is!  Our guests were Susan Paradis and Susan Hong.  We discussed a variety of topics — mostly philosophical things like teaching philosophies, goals for students, the role of the teacher, types of students, and conducting the first or “interview” lesson.

This Friday, we will talk about piano technique for beginner students.  Remember, you can watch it LIVE from 11am-noon Eastern time, or you can watch the video recording on YouTube afterwards.  Here is the event page, where you can request an invitation and submit questions.  If you are interested in participating live in the videochat, send me a message directly to let me know!

Below, I’ve embedded the player where you will be able to watch the live feed on Friday:

See you Friday!

Professional Development, repertoire / methods, Technology

Watch this Google Hangout Discussion about Piano Methods

Whew!  I feel like I have so much to share, but not enough time to share it!  ;)

Last week, I held a summer camp for my piano students called “Practice Tips & Tricks.”  It was a fun week.  For my birthday last month, my husband gave me a projector.  (Yes, I’m a techno-geek!)  It was wonderful to be able to have a large visual to use during camp!  I hope to share more details about all this later.

On Friday, I held another Google Hangout this time talking about piano methods.  You can watch the video here.  We did encounter some technical difficulties unfortunately — I apologize about that!  Thanks for bearing with us during this experiment.  :)

I have another Google Hangout scheduled for this Friday at 11am Eastern time.  Please visit the event page here to get all the details and feel free to submit questions for us to discuss in advance.

More later!  :)

Studio Business

PDF Updated for 2014-15: Record of Lesson Attendance & Payment

I have just finished updating one of the studio business forms from the Printables page for the 2014-15 school year.  It is called the Record of Lesson Attendance & Payment pdf.  I don’t currently use this form myself anymore, but I have received a couple of requests from teachers who used it last year so I was happy to update it again this year!

In case you haven’t seen this, here is how the form works: Write your students’ names in the first column.  Each week, write the lesson date (in a month / date format) in the column for that week.  This is how you can track attendance.  The small circles in each cell are where you can write checkmarks indicating tuition payments.  Whether you charge by-the-week or by-the-month, you can place a checkmark by each paid lesson date.

In case you are curious, the form I currently use for tracking tuition payments each month is this one:

Record of Payments Received

This form works great if you charge a flat monthly rate.  I print one of these sheets every month and put it into my 3-ring binder.  I write the month/year in the blank at the top and then fill in all of my students’ names.  As I receive monthly tuition payments from each student, I record the date, amount, and check number.  Under “reason,” I write “September tuition” or whatever the case may be.  Later, I enter these payments into a separate Excel spreadsheet along with my expenses for the month.

To download, visit the Printables > Studio Business page and scroll down to the R’s for “Record of Lesson Attendance & Payment.”

To read a little bit more about business-related topics, check out last year’s post here.

Piano Teacher Institute

Tomorrow: Watch a Live Video Chat discussion for Piano Teachers

2014-Piano-Teacher-Institute-logo-2Hello, friends!

I’m so pleased to tell your that the first session of the Piano Teacher Institute is currently underway with 10 registrants!  We are having a great time getting to know each other and discussing this week’s topic: Business Sense.

Tomorrow (Friday), the current course registrants and I will be videochatting via Google Hangout from 11am-12pm Eastern time.  You are thrilled to be able to invite you to watch our discussion both LIVE or afterwards from the YouTube page here.

Do you have questions that you would like to see us address during the Hangout?  Please visit the event page here to submit your questions now.

Hope to see you there!