Archive for the "Teaching" Category

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 […]

NEW! Coaching Sessions and Modules for Teachers

I have a passion for teaching – but not just teaching students; teaching teachers. As a teacher I have found that the pedagogical instruction I received on how to teach the beginning student and the fundamentals of violin were the most crucial to propelling me forward in my career. As advanced students we receive much […]

Left Hand Pizz. and the Beginning Student

If you think back in your journey learning the violin or viola you probably were taught extended techniques at the intermediate or advanced stages of learning. There is good reason for this; many extended techniques are too difficult for beginning students and with all there is to learn as a beginner, unnecessary complication should be […]

Dependency and the Musician

In this post I would like to expand the discussion of learning by rote/ear and music reading to discuss the relationship between each and the connection to dependency. By dependency I am referring to that which we need in order to learn a piece of music. In our earliest stages of learning as a student […]

Learning by Rote or Reading Music; Which is Easier?

I recently came across a video on youtube of an intermediate/advanced violinist who has been acclaimed as a child prodigy. One commenter noted that this individual learns all their music my ear and does not know how to read. Another commenter posted that it is easier to learn music by ear than to read music. […]

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 […]

New Beginning Violin Book Update

I am happy to announce that I have only ONE more song to “try out” on my students before finalizing my new book; The Beginning Violinist. I am very excited to be in these final stages and want to let you know how you can prepare your students, and share some comments from mine! Here are […]

New Beginning Violin Book

I am excited to announce that the beginning violin book that I have been working on with my husband (composer Dr. Benjamin Williams) is almost complete! This book has been several years in the making and is meant to be a companion book to the many beginning violin method books already available on the market. […]

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 […]

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