When do we learn music theory?

Published: May 17, 2017  |   Category: Inspiration


I got this question the other day from a parent and I answered something like - it comes a bit later, I don't teach it as a separate subject, but alongside our songs as needed and especially when we do the accompaniment program, you learn as part of the program about chords and where they fit in. That was satisfactory enough for both of us. But... I got thinking. When the word theory came up my first thought was about how I was taught - a a separate subject, within an exam str.....Read More


Its not just piano, its music and more

Published: Oct 10, 2016  |   Category: Inspiration


From the net, in my Facebook feed, I just want to share this because it says something about learning music that goes beyond all those videos of little three-year olds playing Mozart or Bach so expertly on the piano, little fingers flying along the keyboard, as enjoyable as they are. This poster highlights a different perspective to learning piano/music and well worth thinking about. Often we are so caught up with the fun element, or the career prospects of our music education, that we lose sigh.....Read More


Holidays soon!

Published: Dec 1, 2015  |   Category: Inspiration


Only just over a week to go and then it is holidays! Hooray! And it is the Festive Season. So plenty of distraction and keeping up your daily practise of 15 mins at least is going to be hard. But it can be done. Of course there will be some days where it is just too busy to spend any time at the piano. But you can catch up and if you plan a little concert for family and friends of all your favourite songs, you have a really good reason to keep up your playlist. .....Read More


Duets - a great way to teach

Published: Jun 24, 2015  |   Category: Inspiration


It's been such fun playing duets with my students. They play one of their foundation pieces against my accompaniment next to them on the piano. And what a great way to teach and learn. For anyone wanting to play with other musicians, the piano can be a lonely place, unlike violin for example, where you can join a school band, group or orchestra. So duets are a great way of socialising on the piano. You learn to start together and to finish together! You learn not to lose your cool when you m.....Read More


Getting the most from your Playlist

Published: Sep 11, 2014  |   Category: Playlist tips


At every lesson I check the playlist to see how often songs have been played, what songs have been left out, which songs have been played along with the CD, or if the DVD has been viewed. This helps me to see if my student is practising effectively and pick up any challenges. The playlist is more than a simple song listing however. It is a valuable resource for the parent coach and this is the first of a series of blogs to help you make better use of the playlist. From time to time I will tal.....Read More


Your first piano or keyboard

Published: Jan 29, 2014  |   Category: Pianos and keyboards


I still have my first piano. It is a little toy piano, an almost to scale replica of a grand piano, complete with proper black keys, not the painted-on ones and spanning about 3 octaves. When I first learned to play it served me well, for those early lessons it was adequate. I also had access to a "proper" piano at school.  Today, as new classes begin with new students, the choice of piano or keyboard is an important topic. Parents ask - what should they get. The stoc.....Read More