The morning began like most Saturdays. Restful. Mom & Dad went snowshoeing for the first time (I’ll be doing the same on Mt. Hood with my friends April & Emily very soon if the weather cooperates) and they had a wonderful time with friends they’ve had for longer than I can remember! :) The weather at Government Camp was beautiful for them today – as it was here.
I stayed home & taught music lessons. Definitely a HUGE highlight to the day.
My first student is the younger sister of a very sweet, very talented student I taught for almost 4 years – who now studies under my teacher, Monica (her last piece studied with me was Chopin’s Polonaise in G minor, Posthumous – a beautiful piece).
It was almost a tearful reunion seeing her mom & sister here at the studio today – having the wonderful opportunity to teach this 8 year old young lady. We’re trying a new approach (at least in this studio) for music books. The method book has a rather simple approach after the intense first lesson. We’ll add in dynamics, slurs, staccato, other articulation, change pentascales, and other things to keep it interesting – but jumping into music staff from the very beginning. It’ll be fun! :) She likes to compose & improvise at the piano. And today’s lesson, if it’s any indication of the future, was very bright & exciting. We included a Notespeller book, and will soon be adding in Sight Reading/Rhythm Every Day and Theory Time (a method we’re recently adding to the studio curriculum – with great success – everyone seems to be enjoying it, even me!). :) Supplemental books are in the works too – and super, duper fun!
I then taught a very sweet young voice student – who learned completely two new songs today & has begun to understand & utilize the movable solfieggio system for voice. Wow! She was so excited that when her mom came in at the end, we made sure she had a little performance opportunity – and she shone. Apparently, I give a LOT of high-fives. She got 4, or was it 5, today?
Next was the daughter of a dear friend of mine. In addition to completing all her assignments in her books, we discovered that she knew all 7 of the white key root chords in the Major form. I explained that she could change them to minor (root position) by changing only one note in each. Then when she grasped that, I taught her 5 new chords (C#, Eb, F#, Ab, and Bb). After she then learned the minor versions of those, we went onto diminished & Augmented. Today, she came knowing 14 chords and left knowing 48. She also started her first worship chord chart song, “Here I Am to Worship” in the key of E Major, which is NOT easy. Super fun!
The last student of the day was a bright young man, 6 years old, who apparently doesn’t stop practicing! He was determined in the lesson to play his songs until they were perfect. It’s only our 2nd “real” lesson, and he’s conquered the black keys, finger numbers, counting/beats, and is ready to move onto the white keys! He loves playing with repeats in the songs, and is eager to learn more all the time. Last week, I spent a good third of the lesson time answering questions about material farther in the book – and he remembers it! His enthusiasm is certainly contagious.
Everyone did a fabulous job today. :) Even though practicing was difficult for everyone in some way this week, it was a wonderful day to enjoy music. It always is… it’s a gift. I’m excited for the future in the studio, and excited to see such wonderful progress & enjoyment from all these wonderful students.
The studio currently has 25 students, soon to 28 on location, with an additional 8 or so off-location. It’s an exciting time to be a teacher! Thank you for being a part of my life – and for taking part in the wonderful thing that is music! :)
Afterwards, I attended my church’s Saturday service – on Proverbs 26:20-28. Pastor Alan spoke, and we had communion. It was a wonderful time of worship & the Word.
Excited for a restful day tomorrow, but one of production & to-do lists completed. That would be a miracle! But then begins another week of opportunity, family time, new excitement, friendship-building, student accomplishments, and the gift of life. For that, I am very thankful.