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Being a Supportive Piano Parent

by Paul on September 28, 2016

Successful musicians from around the world have noted that their parents’ encouragement and love of music to be the most important element in sparking their interest in music. Whether or not your child has a career in music, your endeavors in bringing music into their lives will make his or her life happier and more enriched. Here are some tips for having music be an enjoyable experience for you and your child.

Parental Attitude and Involvement

How do you make music part of your life? Your family can see what types of music you gravitate to. Actively show your children that you value music in your life. Discuss with your teacher what kind of involvement is best for your child. Don’t only ask your child what they did during the lesson, ask the teacher too. Another easy way to be involved is to read your child’s lesson plan and then ask them what certain things mean or to demonstrate something. Usually it is recommended that a parent remains nearby for beginners for encouragement, and junior high and high school given more privacy during practicing. Consistent, regularly scheduled times are greatly recommended. Inconsistent practice times lead to inconsistent practicing. Try to remain on schedule yourself to facilitate manageable after-school tasks.

Provide a Healthy Music Environment

A healthy music environment includes many things. Keep your piano tuned (twice a year). Keep the piano or keyboard away from distractions (preferably in a room without a television or computer). Keep practice time free of others disrupting that time. Lighting is very important – it truly makes a difference in practicing and playing. Overhead lights do not provide ample lighting for sheet music – it is recommended to use a lamp that shines directly on the music. Extra-heavy headphones for keyboards can be wearisome after only a short while – make sure they are light and are of a good quality.

Encouragement Without Pushing

You can always ask your child to play for others, but never force them to when they don’t want to. You can try to convince them that they just played it beautifully yesterday, so why not try now? Maybe you can convince them to do a line or two. Otherwise, never force them. If you hear during a practice session that they are frustrated, encourage them to keep trying or to move on to another piece, and not give up. You can also always call the studio to ask a question – you don’t have to wait until the next lesson.

Providing Outside Musical Exposure

Provide opportunities to see performances that they would enjoy. Use discretion in choosing performances they would enjoy – ask your teacher. Expose to various styles – orchestra, chamber music, ballets, Broadway, jazz clubs, open-mike shows, etc. Another way to provide exposure is to help your child build a CD collection. Typically classical and jazz CDs are less expensive than popular. Then take time to listen to the CDs (more than once) with them.

Encourage Patience, Persistence, & Determination

This is one of the best lessons you can learn with music: it takes work, effort, and time to get better. The idea of patience with music and oneself is very important to everyone, and piano provides one of the best opportunities for you to teach these ideas. Patience, persistence, and determination are all important with whatever you do in life, and these are exactly the things that music demands of every student.

Constant Communication

Stay in close communication with your teacher, your child, and the studio. It is recommended to stop in at every lesson to get a 30 second update from your teacher (before and after each lesson). Phone calls and email are greatly recommended, too. If it was a difficult week at home, please tell us so we can help in any way we can. We love to hear about happy and exciting things too. Communication is a key to successful piano lessons.

Helpful Hints For Practicing Piano

by Paul on October 3, 2013

Wouldn’t it be great if you could learn that piece faster and it was easier? That’s exactly what can happen for you if you follow these tips. These suggestions are easy and don’t take a lot of time — the best thing to do is let these tips be automatic so when you practice you don’t have to think of them. The most important thing to remember about practicing is keeping your focus. It’s not how long you spend at the piano, but the quality of the time spent that will get you further. It is much better to play something once correctly than many times incorrectly. [click to continue…]

What Do The Pedals Do On A Piano?

October 3, 2013

Some of the most commonly asked questions about the piano are about what the pedals do. The most important tip about using pedals is to always press a pedal with your heel on the ground. Do not stand on them and put your full weight on them or you can break them.

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Resources for Buying and Owning A Piano, Digital Piano, or Keyboard

July 30, 2012

New & Used Pianos & Digital Pianos Rockaway Music 1745 Route 10 East, Morris Plains NJ 07950 Phone: 973-984-8800 Web: Yamaha, Young Chang, many others Jacobs Music Company 2540 Brunswick Pike, Route 1, Lawrenceville NJ 08648 Phone: 609-434-0222 Web: Steinway, Boston, Yamaha, many others Both of these stores have good service, have used […]

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When Is Your Child Ready For Music Lessons?

July 28, 2012

By Rosalie Karalekas Used with permission from Family Magazine Winter 2002 issue. Summary In A Nutshell: When motor skills are clearly refined When reading, math, and attention skills are developed When the motivation to learn comes from the child  “…children who are developmentally ready to begin music lessons will experience a greater rate of […]

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Advice For Parents of Piano Students

July 28, 2012

In making it possible for your child to play a musical instrument, you are providing the opportunity for self-expression, creativity, and achievement. Numerous studies indicate that parental attitude, support and involvement are important factors in a child’s ability to successfully learn to play and to enjoy music. How Can Parents Help? Always keep in mind […]

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6 Quick Tips for Memorizing Music

July 23, 2012

A key tip to memorizing music is to know that there are four kinds of memory in music: visual, auditory, motor memory, and analyzing. Using all four kinds in the right way is the best way to memorize music and keep it solidly in your memory. 1. REMEMBER THE FOUR KINDS OF MEMORY Visual Memory. […]

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How to Maintain Your Piano

June 25, 2012

Maintaining your piano can be a very valuable and worthwhile investment. It can be valuable to you years down the road because it can bring you great memories of your family enjoying music together. It can also be beneficial financially to maintain or increase the value of your piano. As a matter of fact, simply […]

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9 Ways to Have a Great Piano Lesson

June 13, 2012

1. Be Prepared. Being prepared not only means getting good practice time in (at least five 30-minute practices a week), but it’s how well you use your practice time. In fact, it is much better to spend less time and put your whole mind, body and soul into it than to spend an hour just […]

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Welcome to the new site!

June 6, 2012

After much planning and lots and lots of hard work, our new site is finally here! It contains all of the musical goodness you’ve known in the past from previous versions, but it’s organized in a new way. We think it makes everything clearer, and most of all, gets to the heart of something dear […]

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