Category Archives: improvisation

Now Available: Composition & Improvisation Prompts for Piano eBook

Last week, I wrote a blog post here describing how I help my students compose their own pieces.  Today, I am officially announcing the release of a new e-book resource called: Composition & Improvisation Prompts for Piano!

Also posted in composition, private lessons | Tagged , , | 6 Responses

Free Printable: 12-Bar Blues in C

My blogging has been rather sporadic so far this month — this is a busy time of year for piano teachers, isn’t it!  I’m so glad my Spring Recital is over, but this month is still somehow very booked.  :) On Saturday, I had another Piano Party with my students.  It was a small group […]

Posted in improvisation | Tagged , , | 8 Responses

Easy Black Key Improvisation

Today, I’m at the Ohio Music Teachers Association conference (affiliated with MTNA) all day!  Yes, in case you are wondering, I will be posting notes from the sessions I attend later this week.  :) But for now, I wanted to share a quick video of a black key improvisation from a recent piano lesson with […]

Also posted in private lessons | Tagged , , , | 6 Responses

Flashcard Prompts for Improvisation & Composition

Today I have a fun new printable to share!

Also posted in composition, games, other resources, printables | Tagged , , , , , , , | 1 Response

Improvisation Activity: Rory’s Story Cubes

Before I begin, allow me to give credit where credit is due for this wonderful idea: I got this idea from Laura on her blog (click here).  I was so thrilled to see her idea of using these “story cubes” for improvisation with piano students! Meet “Rory’s Story Cubes.” Rory’s Story Cubes consist of a […]

Also posted in beginners / elementary Level, composition, games, group classes, music camps, Preschool / Early Childhood Music, private lessons | Tagged , , , , , | 7 Responses

2010 MMTA Conference (4): Functional Skills are Important by Martha Hilley

What follows are the notes I took from a session with Martha Hilley at the 2010 Michigan Music Teachers Association conference. FUNCTIONAL SKILLS ARE IMPORTANT TO EVERYONE ~ by Martha Hilley “Functional skills” include skills such as harmonization, improvisation, transposition, rhythm, and theory.  There are many fun ways to incorporate functional skills into group/private settings.  Today […]

Also posted in conferences, group classes, music camps, private lessons, rhythm, sightreading | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Response

2010 MMTA Conference (3): Classical Improvisation by Brian Chung

What follows are the notes I took from a session with Brian Chung at the 2010 Michigan Music Teachers Association conference. CLASSICAL IMPROVISATION ~ by Brian Chung Introduction Is improvisation really for jazz only?  Why can’t we classical pianists learn improvisation from our own tradition (as did Liszt, Clara Schumann, and others)? Two goals for […]

Also posted in conferences | Tagged , | Leave a comment

2010 MMTA Conference (2): Theory & Improv as the PB&J of Music, Part 2

A continuation of the previous post……see Part 1 here. THEORY & IMPROVISATION: THE PB&J OF MUSIC ~ by Martha Hilley Activities Continued….. 5. Progression Based Improvisation 1) Show the student a progression such as: A  |  D  |  A  | Bmin |  E  |  A  |  E  |  A  || 2) Be sure the students […]

Also posted in conferences, group classes, music camps, private lessons, settings: | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

2010 MMTA Conference (1): Theory & Improv as the PB&J of Music, Part 1

The first of a series of posts summarizing the 2010 Michigan Music Teachers Association conference. In this post: my notes from the “Theory & Improvisation as the PB&J of Music” session by Martha Hilley (Part 1).

Also posted in conferences, games, group classes, music camps, private lessons, rhythm, settings: | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Improvisation Yields Creativity and Musical Understanding

The benefits of including improvisation activities in piano lessons. The freedom to explore and be creative. Discovering musical concepts on your own. Developing your musical ear. Playing by ear. Composing an original composition.

Also posted in beginners / elementary Level, by student's level, composition, improving as a teacher, private lessons, settings: | Tagged , , , , | 2 Responses

Group Piano Class Ideas

I recently came across this great video/podcast on Mario Ajero’s YouTube channel: an interview with pianist and piano pedagogue Dr. Julie Knerr.  Both Maria Ajero and Julie Knerr are graduates from University of Oklahoma’s widely recognized piano pedagogy program.  In this video, Dr. Knerr shares some of her game ideas for her group piano classes […]

Also posted in beginners / elementary Level, by student's level, games, group classes, intermediate level, motivation, music camps, music theory, private lessons, resources / links, rhythm, settings: | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Response

Music & Movement: Inseparable!

One of the reasons I’ve been considering offering early childhood music classes is because I am a firm believer in the strong relationship between music and movement.  As an undergrad, I took two semester of Dalcroze Eurhythmics which I found incredibly useful.  We learned movements that fit different meters and learned to respond expressively to […]

Also posted in beginners / elementary Level, improving as a teacher, Preschool / Early Childhood Music, resources / links, settings: | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment