Showing posts from September, 2022

Automatic Piano Practice

I had planned to present a session at the KMTA Conference this past weekend, (Covid threw a wrench in that plan, so I'll be trying again next year), but my topic was 'Business Strategies for Independent Music Teachers'. Presenting like this is a new opportunity for me, and a way to grow in my profession. But working on this presentation has got me thinking a lot about automation, because it just so happens to be one of the best tools for surviving as an entrepreneur. The more you can automate, the less you have to spend valuable time manually doing tasks, and the more you have time for doing the parts of your job that you love.  And thinking on this topic has also got me thinking about how automation could be useful for piano students. Especially when it comes to building a practice habit. How can we take advantage of automation to support home practice?  Here are a few ideas off the top of my head:  Automatic reminders - setting an automatic alert or calendar reminder for

History of Keyboard Instruments

Next Monday we'll be having our first piano party of the school year, and it's the one where we learn all about the piano! So it seemed fitting for this week's blog post to finally finish up this one from my drafts encouraging us to think about the history of keyboard instruments.  The piano didn't just spring into being one day and then people started writing keyboard music, it evolved from a number of earlier keyboard instruments like the harpsichord and the clavichord . A lot of the early classical genre music that we now play on the piano was actually written on earlier keyboard instruments. Anything out of the Baroque Era (which includes everything JS Bach wrote) all pre-dates the piano as we know it, and a lot of early Classical period music as well. Understanding the differences in instrumentation at the time when certain pieces were actually written can really help us to interpret the music, and to understand how certain ornaments functioned to create more dyna