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Band director for 15 years, Prarie Central HS
I began teaching while I was in High School and I would teach the younger students who were freshman and sophomores the tenor saxophone. Once I went to Eastman, I taught several people throughout the course of the four years there. I beleive that, particulalry when teaching the saxophone and flute, a mix of classical fundamental technique is very important as well as incorporating the jazz or rock repertoire. I feel that my skills as a music therapist can be very unique particularly because I can really attend to the needs of the student and adapt the music and lesson accordingly. I believe that a person can truly grow as an individual when they bring music into their lives and my first and foremost goal is to have my students truly enjoy what they are doing. I am not a very strict teacher but I of course can be if my student really wants to excel.
Because I teach piano, flute, viola, violin, and guitar, my curriculum varies upon instrument and level. Using piano as an example, for beginning students, I typically start with Bastien's Primer series. This series teaches correct hand posture, technique, and the beginning elements of reading music. Once in the intermediate stage, I am comfortable teaching Alfred, Bastien, Faber & Faber, or Suzuki method books. The intermediate studies chosen depends on the student, student needs, goals, and musical interests. In addition to an intermiediate curriculum, I introduce solo repertoire. Following the intermediate stage, advanced players will begin prestigious soloist works such as sonatas and concertos.
I like to get to know the student as I am teaching so I create small breaks to get to know who I am teachign and their interest, so that I may taylor my lessons to the student. For beginning students I like to use essential elements books as a guide for their practice. For adults I try to find out their long term goals and taylor my lessons to gettimng them to reach that goal.
Helping a student become passionate about music is the most rewarding thing I can get from teaching. I set realistic goals that help the student progress at a rate geared towards the student's own pace. Positive feedback helps instill a desire to continue working and practicing regularly. This also pushes the student to wish to learn and work on more challenging materials. By learning where each student draws his/her own inspiration, I tailor our lessons to their goals while opening up their possibilities to go even further than what the student thought possible.
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To start, Musika suggests renting a flute. For smaller players, a "candy cane" headjoint can balance the weight and make playing easier. As the flutist advances purchasing an open hole model with a B foot joint will produce a more mature sound. Our instructors can assist you in selecting the correct model for your student.
Flute can be a wonderful instrument for older students, especially those who have escaped, or already dealt with, the plight of braces! Of the woodwinds, the flute can be a relatively easy instrument for beginners, and an extremely satisfying instrument to study at any age.
We recommend beginning flute lessons around age 8 or 9. Most school music programs usually begin flute students in the 3rd or 4th grade. The student needs to be big enough to be able to appropriately hold the instrument, including having the minimum hand/finger length to reach the flute keys/holes comfortably, and have the lung capacity to play properly without running out of breath.
In-home flute lessons are an extremely convenient option for busy students and parents. The student saves time and money while learning a new skill without having to leave the comfort of home!
During flute lessons the student will learn how to properly care for the instrument. This is critical to the long term performance of any instrument the student decides to buy or rent. From there, lessons will focus on correct embouchure formation, developing a good tone in all registers, articulation, fingering, and basic musicianship.
Review by Christopher Perrone
Mike has been working with my son Robert for over a year and has just started working with my daughter Kate. Mike is both a great musician and a good teacher. He connects with the kids and keeps them engaged. He is able to tailor the lesson to focus on music that is interesting to each child. He also encourages the students to participate in a public setting which is great. I would highly recommend Mike.
Review by Scott
David is not only a great musician and educator but also a delightful human. We began using David six years ago as a piano teacher for my two boys. Since then my eldest moved on to acoustic and electric guitar and my youngest electric and stand up bass. Somewhere along the way I began to take guitar lessons also (I was David's most bearded student at age 48). David always came prepared to lead but also to follow, he often asked what we were listening to and taught us how to play it. His ability to listen to a piece of music and transcribe it always left me amazed, we have several notebooks full of songs we learned individually or played as a group. After a shoulder injury David continued to impress by teaching me music theory instead of our usual lesson. I could go on forever, David made a positive impact on my family and feel fortunate to have met him.
Review by Brad Schimmer
I have been playing the drums for about 5 years and I have to say that Alvaro is very patient. He has opened me up to new styles of music and I can now play a Songo groove! What I liked most was that he was flexible in what I wanted him to teach me and would also bring in new material specifically to what I wanted him to show me. Overall, great patient teacher and would highly recommend! Thanks Alvaro!
Review by Karl B
“My son and I have been taking lessons with Lynn for 5 or 6 years now. She is very patient with younger students (& older students having "senior moments"). She is also flexible in her lessons in that if we want to work on theory, jazz, rock, blues, she will cater to our requests.” – Karl B., C.P.A., Aug 2015
Review by Tuvana
He is incredibly patient and really customizes his teaching style to the child. Both of my children are learning piano with him; they have learned so much and really enjoy the lessons. In fact, my daughter asked to learn another instrument (guitar) with him and is making great progress with that, too.
Review by Kristen Draughn
Mr. Lou M. is a God-send! With the various needs that our organization requires from our education partners in order to provide enrichment services to our students, Mr. Lou M. has always gone above and beyond in meeting all of those needs. Our students are learning, our caregivers are happy and satisfied, and we couldn't be more pleased with his performance.
Review by Ashley S.
Ali was an amazing voice coach! She taught in a way that made sense to me, and helped me find the voice placements I needed. I didn't know I could sound like that! My development with her was leaps and bounds rather than tiny dreadful steps that happen when you don't know what's going on! Ali was dedicated to helping me work on an audition for a music scholarship and I nailed it all thanks to her, seriously. I can't thank her enough! She helped me with the tools and confidence I needed to sing in the real world alone rather than just back row in a large choir.
Review by James F.
After my first piano lesson, Polina is easily the best teacher I could have hoped for. Extremely charismatic and excited to help YOU learn the piano. She puts a lot of effort into evaluation your learning style and will no doubt help you make tremendous strides! I'm stoked to continue taking lessons!
Review by Emily
Steve gets you started right away with songs but also goes into music theory and reading music which adds to understanding and appreciation of the music. He is very approachable and you can tell that he absolutely loves music and teaching. It is hard not to be excited about the process of learning with Steve. If you are considering lessons I highly recommend Steve for any level of student.
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