Archive for the "Practicing" Category

Is Your Teaching Business Successful?

I recently ran across this blog post on Facebook: Running a Successful Teaching Business Means Not Losing Students Go read the article if you want, it’s not long. If you don’t want to read it, it basically talks about how to organize your lessons so that you can keep up with what each student is doing […]

Relating Finger Placement to the Notes on The Staff

Many students encounter difficulty with music reading, and knowing where to find the notes they see on the staff on their instrument. While this is a common problem, I believe it’s one that can be easily addressed! Let me first list some ways that I believe do not help address this problem (and can actually contribute to […]

Bowing Smoothly at Every Level

Bowing smoothly and evenly is a skill students at all levels must conquer. Obviously this skill needs to be taught to beginning students, but I have also encountered intermediate and advanced students that lack the foundational knowledge of correct bow usage. I believe that tone production, specifically that of a smooth bow, is often what […]

The “Hard” Teacher – How High Standards Make Music Fun!

I would describe myself as a “hard” teacher – meaning that I have high standards and expect my students to meet them. That doesn’t mean that I push students to do more than they are capable of, or that I expect music to be the only activity in my students’ lives. However, it does mean […]

The Value of Teaching Open String Songs

The Beginning Violinist: A Companion Book for Children and Adults starts out with Open String Songs. I wanted to briefly give you some of the benefits of using Open String Songs with your students!   1) Open String Songs help students more quickly understand where notes are located on the fingerboard.   Students of any […]

Playing vs. Practicing

I require my students to spend a minimum of 30min/day practicing. I write down what I want them to practice and show them how I want them to work on those goals. My students diligently go home and try to do their best to work on their assignments, but sometimes I will have a student […]

The Practicing Myth

What I call “the practicing myth” comes in various forms, but it always goes something like this:   “My kids hate to practice, and I don’t want them to hate music, so taking music lessons must not be for them.” If parents took that perspective with other things it might sound something like this: “My […]

When and How to Teach Students to Tune

Tuning is the first thing we as musicians do before playing, so we should teach our students to do the same. Many teachers tune their students’ instrument for them, especially when teaching younger beginning students. While this may give more time in the lesson to teach other things, I think students are missing out on […]

The Marriage of the School and Private Instructor

Picture with me an elementary school stage,… …a full audience of parents and friends, and a procession of young violin students parading across the platform with their instruments neatly tucked under their right arms. When they reach their positions they stop and face forward, waiting for their cue, eyes on their instructor who follows the […]

Advantages of Being an Adult Learner

Currently my studio consists of about half adult students, most of whom came to me as complete beginners. Being an adult learner has many challenges, and many adult students find learning the violin more difficult than expected. However, there are quite a few advantages to being an adult learner which I feel are important to […]

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