Thursday, August 28, 2014

And The New School Year Begins!!

Look at these great kids!  About 2/3 of my students were able to attend the Group Lesson today.  I learned  3 things:  make sure the air conditioner is on (Holy cow, I thought my hot flashes had gone into overdrive!!!)  Don't have a cable repair guy come and turn off the internet the same day that I need it for one of the activities (that's what plan B is for, right?), and next time either have a helper or divide this into two groups :)

I did not get the kind of pictures I planned to get (refer back to - get a helper!), I almost didn't get these.  Here they are playing a 'Get-To-Know-You' game.

The remnants of painting the stars for their practice chains (I'll explain those in an upcoming blog post.)  I meant to get the kids in this picture, sigh.  If your student didn't make it to the Group Lesson, have them come a little early or stay a little late at their next lesson so they can paint their star. 

We spent some time getting their binders kind of up and going.  If you have a moment to look at them you will see that on the front and back covers are charts that I will be keeping track of things.  Rather than overwhelm everyone I will slowly explain all of these a little at a time in weekly blog posts until I've covered everything.  If you have the little paper inserts that go into the inside divider tabs either send them to lessons next week or do it at home.  The different dividers need to be labeled: 1)  Scales, 2) Words / Tempo, 3) Composition, 4) Music / Lead Sheets, 5) Misc / UTube.

Piano Maestro:  (One of the charts on the front cover of the binders).  This is an ipad program that is lots of fun and really works students on sight-reading and counting correctly.  Two weeks ago it was announced that it will be FREE to verified teachers and their students!  I've gotten myself "verified" and signed up each of my students, you should have gotten an invitation via email (if not, let me know).  If you have an ipad you need to download the program, if you go through the email link it automatically connects you to my account, easy peasy. This is only an ipad program.  Do not feel like you need to buy an ipad if you don't have one.  It's just really cool and I'm making it available to those who can use it.  You will be able to use it at your home and it will be linked to me so I can monitor progress. Each student has a profile under my studio and it keeps a record of their progress in the program.  If you take advantage of the LAB TIME I mentioned in a previous email, where students are welcome to come before and/or stay after their lesson for 15 minutes, they can use my ipad during those times.

Above is a link from Utube of a young girl doing one of the very elementary songs....just kind of gives you an idea of what the app is like.  There are different levels and genres of music (there's a pop section with lots of current popular songs that the teenagers have gone nuts over). 

***Cool, this morning about 1/3 of you had already signed onto Piano Maestro!  Let your students have fun with it and get to know how it works.

Here's to a fun year of piano together!  Miriam


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