Where? will music find your child.

Posted 1 CommentPosted in lessons, life, parents, practice, student

I was a kicker.  No, girls weren’t allowed to play football in the 80’s, nor did my rural school in Kansas didn’t offer soccer.   But, as a little girl, I distinctly remember sitting at the piano bench.  I wore a handmade dress and black patent leather Mary Janes, knee socks to match.  My long […]

Rewards…Going beyond $$$

Posted 1 CommentPosted in behavior, parents, practice, rewards, student

re·ward rəˈwôrd/ noun –  a thing given in recognition of one’s service, effort, or achievement. I recently spoke at a teacher training course at an Arts School.   Of course, the age-old question popped up:  “How do you get kids to practice?”   “Yup, there it is,” I thought to myself.   Really, I don’t have […]

Momentum. Keep moving forward.

Posted 6 CommentsPosted in life, Momentum, Next Steps, practice, student

You don’t have to understand it all to take the next step.  You don’t.  You really don’t.  In life.  In piano lessons. Why do we think we have to have it all figured out before we move on?  I challenge you in this belief.  Take piano lessons, for instance.  Sometimes your student comes to lessons […]

Raw. Real. Unfiltered…Thoughts on Performance

Posted 2 CommentsPosted in fear, perfection, performance, practice, self worth

I hate performing.  No, scratch that.  I really like to perform but it scares the {expletive} out of me.  There I said it.  I’m not good enough.  Someone will judge me.  After all, I should be a flawless pianist.  I’m a teacher aren’t I? The Back Story There’s always a back story, huh?  Here’s mine. […]

Knock, Knock. Is Nancy NeverPractice Home?

Posted Leave a commentPosted in blog, lessons, parents, practice, student

I hated to practice. I’m not proud of it, but I gouged deep scratches in our burgundy spinet, thanks to sharp, low-heels on my Mary Janes, and a good, swift kick. I could throw a youngest-child tantrum with the best of them. You see, I’m from a long line of tenacious women. A less-kind description […]

The Practice PACT: it’s a lot like life.

Posted Leave a commentPosted in lessons, life, parents, practice, student

Have you ever made a pact with yourself, only to find that a few weeks later you have broken it already? How about that New Year’s diet resolution? Or, remember that exercise faze you started before Spring Break, and then fell out of last summer? Exercise is one habit, however, that I have not broken […]

Practice 101: Scrapping it All.

Posted Leave a commentPosted in genre, lessons, life, practice

A few weeks ago I penned the article I intended to post today. This morning, however, I scrapped it all.  I didn’t like it. It didn’t feel right.  It didn’t fit me; it didn’t fit my style. Sometimes, music is like this.  No matter how much I would like a student to learn a particular […]

Practice 101: Consistency & Responsibility

Posted 4 CommentsPosted in lessons, parents, practice, responsibility, student

I pillow my head at night with visions of students willingly practicing for hours at a time, each and every night. That’s right.  I’m dreaming. You may have heard it said, “Practice is a lonely task.” “A little encouragement goes a long way.” “Parents:  your role is to be present physically, mentally, emotionally as beginners […]

Igniting Passion

Posted 4 CommentsPosted in parents, passion, practice, student

Recently, I posed this question on social media: “What do you want to know about piano lessons?” This conversation began with another question, “How do you make a student practice?”   Quickly, however, the discussion spiraled into the topic of ‘igniting passion’ for playing the piano. One adult commented, “I think this is an age-old […]