"I try to instill a love of music - as well as learning in my students, and am interested in preparing well rounded musicians who have good technique, good reading and memorizing skills, learn to play by ear and improvise, and are excited about music and the piano. In addition to classical, I also teach ragtime, boogie-woogie, musical theater, folk songs, hymns, contemporary sacred music, and other styles that seem appropriate for my students as requested. I try to teach each student according their own tastes, including classical for a part of most lessons. Opportunities to participate in Festivals, Contests/Competitions, and other events is available for my students due to my membership in Music Teachers National Association, Texas Music Teachers Association (TMTA) and Austin District Music Teachers Association. I hold three performance opportunities in my studio each school year.
I do try to work with the method books my students bring me if they are transfer students from other teachers. For new students, I try to match their learning style with many different method books that are available. In addition to standard piano methods, I also teach music theory, off-the-bench activities, and offer my students the option of taking the graded TMTA theory tests each year. In addition to what my students study on the piano, I give them weekly theory assignments as homework, which I go over with them during each lesson. I also offer use of ipad apps (Piano Maestro, Piano Cat, Dust Buster, Flashnote Derby, iRealPro and others), chord chart playing for advanced students, and training for collaborative pianists if requested.
Young students need to have parents guiding them as they practice, as well as having a 'set' piano time for consistent practice. I suggest that students practice at least 5 days a week. Sometimes we base it on time to practice, repetitions, or what is needed for the student to progress.
I encourage my students to 'share' their gifts anytime they have the opportunity for family, at church, school, or fun time with friends."