How to keep momentum during a Studio Break

A break from the routine can be a good thing once in a while, but for students who are wanting to keep up their momentum a studio break can leave them wondering what to work on! Since we have a good long studio break coming up between May 2nd and June 7th, I'm sharing a few ideas of what to do with some time off of lessons.

Review some of the year's favorite pieces
On May 2nd we'll be finishing up a terrific school year session during which students have learned a lot of great music! A break from getting assigned new material is the perfect time to go back through and pull out some of the year's favorites to play through again. In addition to the fun of revisiting some favorites, this will have the added benefit of reviewing the theory and techniques that we learned along with those pieces.

Learn something by ear, purchased sheet music or an online tutorial
Most piano students have a favorite artist, movie or song that they would like to be able to play on the piano, and we do try to incorporate as many of these into our regular lesson curriculum as we can, but it's also important to remember that the goal of taking piano lessons is really about learning enough to play music on our own! Since a huge part of being a musician is following our creativity and interests, use the break as a time to tinker with a favorite popular song. 

Sight Reading
Sight reading is an essential skill for pianists! I try to make sure that heading into a break, all students have a book or two that they haven't played every piece in, so grab a one of those and try reading through some new music, or hop on an app that gamifies sight reading like Piano Maestro! We can also link up your home account on Piano Maestro to the studio account so that any progress made over break will sync up and they can pick up where they left off when we jump back into lessons!

Espressivo Piano Camp
And for students in McPherson, we have a local piano summer camp to help you get through the studio break! This year Espressivo Piano Camp will run from June 1-5, which just so happens to tbe the week before our studio's summer session begins. At Espressivo students will engage with music theory, performance, composition, improvisation and music history in a vibrant group setting. There will be lots of games, and the week wraps up with a camp piano recital. This is the perfect way for students to engage with their piano study in a new way, be a part of the larger local piano community, and kick things back up before we head into the summer session in the studio. Espressivo is a collaboration of several area teachers (including me) and is open to students heading into second grade and up of all levels. More info here. 

And those are my tips for keeping your momentum up during the upcoming studio break if your piano kid is itching for some different ways to engage with their music.