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Hello! I am new member. (Read 2583 times)

Offline tatiana

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Hello! I am new member.
« on: March 22, 2002, 11:56:01 PM »
Hello, my name is Tatiana, and I am your colleague (if you are a piano teacher). Recently moved in USA from Russia, and already find couple of students to teach classical piano at home! Now I would like to ask you, guys, if there are specific ways of American piano teaching tradition? In Russia I went through 11-years training (musical school, then college), and we played 5 main forms: scales, etudes, polifonic, grand form (sonates), and finally pieces. Do you have the same system here? I am open for your ideas, and let's discuss ways of perfect teaching for kids: I have one 6-years old student, whom I have to interest a lot! Anyway, I am waiting for your wise advices! Sorry for my English :-/,
Tania

Offline pianodeanne

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:)Re: Hello! I am new member.
«Reply #1 on: March 26, 2002, 04:01:23 PM »
Tatiana,

Hello, and welcome to America!  The best advice I could give you is  to teach from the heart, what you learned and what most influenced you when you were a little girl.  Everyone has their own way of teaching.  It is our uniqueness that makes us good piano teachers.  
I try to make it fun for the student, too.  Joke around with them a bit, yet still be firm.  Sometimes I give candy after a lesson (if they do good), and I also have stickers to put on the music when they did a great job in practicing!  It kind of gives them something to look forward to.  

Good luck.  This is a great website for any questions you might have.   :)
Praise, praise, praise!!!

Offline rmc7777

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Re: Hello! I am new member.
«Reply #2 on: April 02, 2002, 10:39:53 PM »
Hello Tatiana,

Welcome to America.  I think it's terrific that someone with your background and training will be teaching American students.  I am not a piano teacher myself, however, I've been taking lessons since I was a young boy and, many years later, am still taking lessons from piano faculty at the local university.    (I love piano and can never learn enough!)  I thought I would just make some personal observations about teaching children.  These are just my opinions but might be helpful.  I think it's important to strike a balance between technical skills and artistic or musical skills.  My teachers generally divided my time about 1/3 on mastering technical skills and about 2/3 on musical skills.  On the technical end I learned such things as scales (major/minor), arpeggios, octaves, broken octaves, various finger exercises, trills, etudes, and the like.  (Clementi and Czerny come to mind).  Also, my teachers would often invent exercises for specific pieces that I happened to be working on.  For example, I recall in one of the Beethoven sonatas there were several passages with broken octaves so we created some exercises with broken octaves just for this sonata.  However, in the past (and right now), I spent much more time and effort on musical, artistic issues.  For example, how to interpret musical passages, how to create a singing tone in cantabile phrases, how to properly articulate pharases to bring out the melody line, how to voice chords to bring out the various nuances of sound, choosing the right tempo, dynamics, rhythm, accents, and so forth.   I think this balance worked very well.  

We also spent time studying the many forms of classical music and composers, and how they relate, or contrast, one another.  Bach inventions vs. Mozart sonatas vs. Beethoven sonatas vs. Chopin etudes, and the like.  

As for teaching children, the methods you choose probably depend on the age, skill, and more importantly, interest of the student.   When I was a young student I recall spending some time on technical drills, but much more time on actually playing music.  I still have a stack of music books with all the pieces I played - there is quite a variety (Mozart, Bach, Clementi, Beethoven, etc.).  I think the variety of music was something that kept my interest in it.   There was enough technical training to become proficient but not so much as to become dull.    

I should also mention that I've read many books written by professional concert pianists - Giesking, Lhevinne, Hoffmann, and others.  They all mention how vitally important their early teachers were in their musical development.  If you will be teaching children I think you have an opportunity to make a life-long impresssion on them, and give them the gift of music that will stay with them forever.

Good luck!

Regards,
Richard

Offline tatiana

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Thank you!
«Reply #3 on: April 04, 2002, 02:10:32 AM »
Hello Richard and Deanne,
first of all, I want to thank you for the wonderful replies at my topic. They are so helpful! I will definitely use all of your advices and ideas in my practice. By the way, I already used some 'sticker stuff' with my young student, and it seemed to help him be less distracted, made him work harder.
And now some of my ideas: I only created it yesterday and it already had a big success:) We decided to make a little concert in a couple of months, so my 7-years old (yes, he is already 7, not 6) student will have to work hard preparing for his first serious performance. Of course, it all will be at home, and he will play for his family and friends, but as you know, music is not only technical skills, but also psychological training - it's public performance and it also needs to be trained. So, we made a list of pieces we would like to insclude in the concert program. It was everything - starting from simple little melody I tought him without using scales, and going as complicated as Bach's menuet G-dur! Now we will have this plan and everytime I have a lesson, I will have a reason to make him working harder!
If anybody had an experience of little home concerts, write me back and tell about it! I'll be waiting for your ideas and interesting stories.
Thanks,
Tatiana, now Van Dinter (I changed my name today form 'Perevoznikova', as a married girl)
All the best!

Offline Janae915

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Re: Hello! I am new member.
«Reply #4 on: April 20, 2002, 12:24:30 AM »
Dear Taitiana,
Sorry if I spelled your name wrong.  I have little "recitals" for my ten students in my home every six months.  They have a "recital piece" to play.  I also have a piano dollars system where the student earns a "pi ano dollar" for getting their "goal" of practicing a certain amount of time for a week.  They also get  a candy if they get their goal.  If they complete their theory they get another "piano dollar".  The white paper dollars add up and there is a piano "store" at the recital where they can buy little things with their "dollars"  It's a good incentive to getthem to practice.  It's the exact same method my piano teacher used with me when I was growing up, Alfred books and all.  Good luck with your own teaching!
~Janae