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I use an eclectic approach in my methods of teaching. When starting beginning students I pull from Alfred beginning methods books, but supplement them with additional literature. As soon as the fundamentals are learned, I stop using method books and begin using piano repertoire from all eras.
For all of my piano students, I use Nancy and Randall Faber's Piano Adventures. Students ages 3-5 use the My First Piano Adventure series, which moves at a slightly slower pace and contains more parent/teacher activities. Students ages 6-12 (where most of my students are) use the standard Piano Adventures progression. Older students (age 13 and up) use the Accelerated Piano Adventures series, which is designed specifically for use with older beginners. Students are provided with a lesson book from which the bulk of their assignments will come and a theory book containing written activities. As a general rule, a student will have one or two assignments from each book per week. The assignments are coordinated so as to reinforce concepts discussed in lessons. This allows the student to make connections between the lessons and the solo repertoire. Once a student has mastered the basics, I will add supplemental material taken from the Fabers' PlayTime Piano series. This usually consists of folk tunes or children's songs, but can be tailored to match the student's interests. More advanced students take their supplemental material from the Exploring Piano Classics series by Nancy Bachus. My band students use Hal Leonard's Essential Elements series and the Rubank Methods books (Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced for each instrument). I also allow time in the lesson for students to work through any areas of difficulty they may have in their school band music. As the student advances, I will introduce standard solo repertoire appropriate for his or her level.
After our first lesson together, I like to set some long term goals and have the student set some as well. In addition, we will each develop goals we hope to accomplish by our next lesson. As we check off our accomplishments, students will begin to see how successful they are and how far they've come.Each student will have different interests and ability levels and it is my job to help them feel successful, and to inspire them to love music for a lifetime.
Students want to learn the piano for a variety of reasons. Some aren’t really sure they want to learn at all, but mom wants them to give it a shot! Others just want to learn that song on the radio! All are fine reasons to learn, and each deserves a personal approach. For very young students just learning the basics, structure provides direction and comfort, so I’d recommend jumping into a beginner’s curriculum such as by Alfred or Hal Leonard and going from there. For older students who may have a better idea of what or how they want to learn, I’d work with them to refine their goals and develop a path appropriate towards achieving them. In all cases, I strive to keep students excited and engaged with repertoire that’s challenging and enjoyable as they work towards their goals.
Yingzhou started playing the piano at age 4. As a gifted student, he was admitted into the Secondary School Attached to Shenyang Conservatory of Music when he was 12. Later he has further studied in Shanghai Conservatory of Music (pre-college division) for three years under the tutelage of professor Zhao Xiaosheng. In 2008, he was admitted to Manhattan School of Music in New York and has studied there for a year. He transferred to Capital University in 2010 to study with Dr. Tianshu Wang. Yingzhou has won many piano competitions in China, including a national first prize, and has performed as a soloist with Shanghai Symphony Orchestra. He is the winner the 2011 Karen Jean Foster keyboard Competition at Capital University.
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Music lessons in your home offer a convenient option to learn music! Most of our students request in-home lessons for this reason. As long as you have a piano or keyboard in your home, then you should be all set to start your lessons! Children who have never played an instrument before may feel more comfortable studying in their own home, as it may be less intimidating than going somewhere else. In-home lessons also decrease the time and gas money spent traveling to a different location.
For students just starting out, a keyboard or digital piano is a great entry level alternative to a real acoustic piano. We suggest trying to buy a keyboard with 88 keys. Keyboards with a weighted hammer action are recommended as their touch response and general feel will be most similar to that of an acoustic piano as this will provide students with a greater level of satisfaction during their practice time. Popular keyboard brands include Yamaha, Casio and Roland. If it is at all possible, consider buying an acoustic piano. Upright models are less space consuming, while a grand piano will provide the best sound.
Piano lessons for children generally focus on learning the fundamentals of the technique of the instrument and learning to read music and rhythms. We suggest beginning piano lessons no earlier than age 4, due to the attention span of the child, as well as the strength they have in their hands for playing. Piano Lessons will offer an excellent introduction to learning music for a child. Music theory and musicianship skills will also be taught during the lessons. Piano lessons are a great choice for introducing the art of music to your child!
Adults take up piano lessons for a number of different reasons. Some people want to reintroduce themselves to the instrument having once played it in the past, while others are looking for a new hobby or just to learn a new skill for fun! Whatever the reason, there are major benefits to learning the piano during adulthood. Learning piano technique can help retain fine motor skills and co-ordination, it can keep the mind sharp due to the complex thought processes, and has shown to be good for preserving your hearing. Learning to play the piano can also be therapeutic, and is a great stress reliever.
The content of each lesson is determined by the ability and experience level of each individual student. For beginner students who are new to the piano, lessons will be devised to give students the fundamentals of good piano playing. Students will learn the correct posture, hand position, and fingering techniques for playing scales and chords. Intermediate players can start to increase their playing speed in order to perform runs, fills, and solos, they can broaden their chord playing to things like augmented and diminished chords, they develop their sight reading, learn music theory such as time signatures, and work on applying these skills to more complex compositions. Advanced players may want to study a particular genre or composer. Pianists who enjoy Classical music may like to study the compositions of Bach or Mozart, or maybe develop their Jazz or Blues playing. Teachers can also help prepare students for exam, auditions, performances, or recitals.
Review by Alex A.
Travis rocks. My 7-year-old son and I both take lessons with him. Travis has moved me off the plateau I was on with lessons that focus on theory and technique. And for my son, he's been able to instill a desire and interest that were missing when he previously took piano lessons. With Travis teaching us, the limits are the ones we impose on ourselves. Needless to say, Travis himself plays a mean guitar to boot!
Review by Violetking
Bill has been a great teacher for both my 6 yr. old and my 8 yr. old. He is always on time, keeps them engaged, and gives them just enough of a challenge for the next week. They are both beginners, but I am surprised by how much they already know after just a month or so of lessons. Both kids are practicing willingly and look forward to lesson.
Review by Cameron D.
After signing up for lessons with David L. I knew I made the right choice. Just after a couple of weeks I didn't see him as a teacher but as a best friend. There was always a relaxed atmosphere during the lessons. He was very easy to talk to and he really listen to you. If I ever had a question he would answer. He tailors to what ever you want to do in that lesson. David L. is a great teacher and a friend. I totally recommend him for anyone
Review by Lea G
Kevin was such a fun, smart and innovative voice teacher to work with. I had the pleasure of taking lessons with him for over a year and I couldn’t have been more pleased with my time under his training. In just a few weeks I noticed my voice was stronger and I was able to apply his teaching and see the results. He explains his techniques in a way that the student is able to actually hear and feel the changes he is referring to. This allows the student to efficiently practice outside of lessons. Even further, he believed in me and truly cared about my progress. He was always energetic and focused in lessons and was continually surprised how far a song could come in just one hour of his time. Under his teaching I developed a stronger belt in my higher range, learned how to color my voice for different sounds and improved my stage presence. I wholeheartedly trust Kevin’s musical insight and was grateful that he challenged me with a wide variety of songs and styles that I hadn’t considered trying before.
Review by Jenn
My son and I both take lessons with Micheal. My son started on the ukulele and recently started the guitar. He is excellent with children. Very patient and very intuitive to the child's ability. He is also an excellent teacher for adults. I had not touched my guitar in several years and in a couple months not only to I remember everything I forgot but I'm learning many new techniques and am a much better player than I've ever been.
Review by Claudiaaustin
Our kids love Mr. Lynwood. Mr. Lynwood is very patient and skillful teaching our kids both music theory and guitar/piano. He keeps them engaged and motivated during their lessons and we are seeing -or rather hearing- fast improvement in the kids' dexterity playing their respective instruments. We would recommend this good natured instructor to anybody.
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 Thomas Pickens
"I've been taking lessons with Richard for just a little over six months now and all I can say is that he is an amazing instructor. He hasn't followed a set one size fits all script in his lessons but has instead worked with my musical interests and at my pace in a way that is truly valuable. He has also kept things fun, interesting, and engaging even at times when I've felt overwhelmed and discouraged. This is an instructor that is truly adaptable to his students and will make sure that they get the most out of their lessons. I would definitely recommend him to anybody that truly wants to unlock their musical potential."
Review by Robert Stallone
I am in my 60s and decided to get back into playing my guitar. I thought taking lessons would be a good way to formalize the endeavor. I did have some concern about whether working with a teacher would work out as I've behave only played for my own enjoyment for a long time. Peter and I have had a few lessons together and I am truly enjoying the experience. He is very supportive and flexible. We arrived at a three gold approach that is really working for me. We focus on developing a playlist, learning some of the more iconic tunes from leading artist that I would have a hard time learning on my own and developing some technical skills related to style and music theory. Now I look forward to my next lesson and am already playing better and enjoying the journey. Peter is a great teacher I'm lucky to have the opportunity to work with him.
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