The Way We Learn: Teaching A Blind Student to Read Music

I first met Darren as a student in my Piano I class, a group piano class designed for beginner students that is usually comprised of about 16 students all playing digital keyboards…. at the same time. It can be a challenging class to teach, as it consists of both music track students and non-music track students, some with experience, some with none. The object of the class is to teach students how to read music and prepare them with the technical skills needed to work through more challenging literature, theory, etc. in subsequent classes. As this class focuses on basics such as staff reading, rhythmic values, and musical structure, Darren and I quickly learned that this type of class structure would not work for him.

Learning How to Learn

Lately, I have been thinking a great deal about what motivates me as a teacher.  Am I getting the right message across to my students, and am I helping them learn practical skills that will benefit them as musicians?  Sometimes, I find myself getting caught up in the time frame in which things are getting …

Changing Your Outlook is the Quickest Way to Change the Outcome

As many of you already know, I recently finished a Masters degree in Piano Performance at Loyola University New Orleans; a masters degree that I in no way planned for and am still surprised I finished.  While I have recently decided that going back to school was probably the best decision I have ever made, …

The Value of the Teacher/Student Relationship

Lately, I have been spending a lot of time reflecting on the importance of the relationships we build, specifically the bond that forms between teacher and student.  This year has brought many changes, both personally and professionally.  I have had the great pleasure of watching one of my own students begin her teaching career and …

Summer Piano Institutes

Hi parents and students! Some of you may have already seen this on my facebook page, but I wanted to make you aware of two great Summer Piano Institutes for intermediate to advanced students.  Both opportunities accept students from Middle School through High School, and the application and audition deadlines are coming up in the …

Student of the Month

Hi parents! I recently came up with an idea to start recognizing one student a month on the website, and I wanted to gauge everyone’s thoughts on that idea.  Each “Student of the Month” would have a little paragraph about their school accomplishments, outside activities, and any special awards or recognition they have received in …

The New Orleans International Piano Competition

Dear students and parents, We are lucky enough to have a great professional piano competition take place every other year right here in our own back yards!  MASNO’s International Piano Competition is coming up next week from July 18th-25th.  The Competition features FREE master classes scheduled at Loyola throughout the day, as well as the …

Combating the Idea of Instant Gratification

In an age where most people have come to expect what they want when they want it, mastering a Classical Instrument has become a bit antiquated.  One of the toughest things to overcome as a teacher is the young student’s idea that everything can be done in a day.  Here is another video from Norman …

How to Prepare Your Child For A Career In Music

Parents, Please check out this great video about preparing your children for a career in performance.  Norman Krieger is an Associate Professor of Keyboard Studies at USC, and he makes some excellent points about the patience and dedication it takes to succeed as a musician.