The Summer I.S.P.

Summer is coming…finally!  And, I know some of you are thinking, “YES!!! I get a break from taxi service to piano lessons.”  In fact, historically, I know that about 60-70% of you must be feeling that way!

But, what a break from piano lessons became more of an exploration project for your student?  What if this summer inspired creativity? What if an Individual Summer Project at the piano studio changed your student’s outlook on music?  What if the summer of 2019 changed the trajectory of your student’s life? Admittedly, that one may be stretching it a bit. But the summer of 2019 could be the season that fuels a new excitement for music, or even gives your child a new perspective.

My story…

I grew up on a farm in Kansas.  While we did not have a lot of summer activities (softball and the city swimming pool were pretty much it), my siblings and I were always involved in the County 4-H Fair.  During my formative years, i spent all summer long preparing projects for the fair, the 2nd week of August! All summer, I honed my skills in cooking, sewing, and caring for pigs.

To this day, I’d say that I’m a pretty good cook.  I HATE to sew, and I developed discipline in caring for animals (case in point:  Teddy and Winston).  PLUS, I have a pretty healthy love of bacon.

Were the projects always fun? NO.  Did my parents need to remind me of deadlines (read NAG me)?  YES.

But, I do remember those summers fondly.    I had a goal.

This summer, in lieu of regular lessons, your student is invited to find an I.S.P. (Individual Summer Project).  Four piano lessons will become, in essence, a summer-long camp/workshop. Your student will  meet with their counselor (me) along the way to keep the motivation and inspiration going!  

Each session will focus on achieving their I.S.P. Goal.  Sessions may either be private or partner (with teacher approval) for more enjoyment!  Private lessons will be 30 minute and partner lessons will be 60 minutes. This is a great time for your student to explore, create, and just learn something new in a relaxed and fun environment.   

The dates of the private/partner sessions are flexible … you pick the 4 dates!  Following is an outline of the ‘workshops’ offered.

Got I.C.E.?

    • Inspire. Compose. Explore.
      • “Setting the Stage” Workshop (Partner or Group)-date/time TBD
    •  4 Private Sessions
    • Learn Relevant Music Theory
    • ‘Animal Menagerie’ Composing Project
    • Compose on Songwriting Software
    • Level 3+/Teacher Approval
    • $120

Because a degree of musical knowledge is necessary to compose, students will need either a Grade 3A proficiency or my approval to enroll in this workshop.  Your student also needs to know their way around a computer.

I will cover the basics for students to start planning their composition in a “Setting the Scene”workshop at the beginning of summer.  Students will then have 4 private/partner sessions in order to work on their composition.  The theme is broad – ‘Animal Menagerie’.  It is preferable for students to work on their own laptop/iPad during lesson time in the last few sessions.  Internet connection is available on site.  I have 2 pianos in my studio.

Movie Magic.

    • Choose & Play New Music from a Film or Video Game
    • Make a Music Video using iMovie.
    • Preteens & Teens 
    • 4 Private/Partner Lessons + Music/Sheet/Chord Chart/Book
    • Individual or Partner
    • $120

Movie Magic is a workshop designed for the preteen or teen in mind.  Your preteen/teen will learn new music from a film or video game (remember there are a myriad of songs that have been used in films). After learning the music, your student will somehow incorporate their recorded performance into a music video.  He/she will plan, record, and edit their own video in this summer-long project. This workshop can be individual or partner/group based for more fun!

Find Your Voice.

    • Like to sing? or
    • Want to play in a band?
    • Like to Improvise?
    • Learn to use chord charts and lead sheets with ease.
    • 4 Private/Partner Lessons + chord charts to 10 pop songs.
    • Teacher Approval
    • $120

This workshop is designed for the student who loves to sing and accompany themselves on the piano.  Or, perhaps they are interested in playing keys in a band. I will teach the intricacies of playing “accompaniment style.”  I have a experience playing in a worship band, and will bring this ‘to the table’ in teaching students how easy and fun being an instrumentalist in an ensemble can be.  As a high schooler, I taught myself the chord approach to playing the piano while singing. It’s that easy!  Since then, I’ve taken several courses in “the chord approach.”  This is one of my personal favorites!

A Brand New World

    • Designed for the younger student/beginner 
    • Learn new genre of music & a touch of grade appropriate music history.
    • Includes a grade-level book (Classical, Pop, Jazz & Blues,  Rock)
    • 4-6 Private/Partner Lesson package (must pick the same music genre)
    • $120 (4 week)
    • $150 (6 week)

This session is just that … discovering a new genre of music!  It is designed for the younger student (Prep. Level -Level 2B), who may not be ready for the scope of a larger ISP.  Your student will not be committing to this genre forever, AND they just may grow to like it! A smattering of age-appropriate music history and relevant music theory will be sprinkled into their new repertoire.

Off the Page and Onto a Safari.

    • Designed for the beginner/new student
    • Play by rote and get the benefits of:
      • Memory
      • Concentration
      • Creativity
      • Technique
    • Includes songs and an animal themed craft.
    • 4-6 Private Lesson package
        • $120 (4 week)
        • $150 (6 week)

Your student will learn a menagerie of animal themed songs all by rote (in an “I do”, “You copy” teaching method).  Some of the benefits of learning by rote are learning to play by memory, concentration,  creativity and learning proper technique. Each lesson will include a craft paired with the animal themed song(s) for the week.  

Here’s a run-down of the most recent on-line Masterclasses that I have taken in order to get ready for this summer:

    • Ultimate Music Theory by Glory St. Germain (Manitoba, Canada)
    • The 5 Most Powerful Teaching Techniques by Glory St. Germain (Manitoba, Canada)
    • How To Teach Lead Sheets by Tim Topham (Melbourne, Australia)
    • Innovative Lesson Formats by Nicola Canton (Dublin, Ireland)    

If you have questions, please let me know.  Available dates will be posted on the portal calendar soon.  Please message me with the session your student is interested in, and then sign up for dates four or six on the student portal.  You will be billed in June for the sessions.

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