PRESCHOOL INFORMATION PAGE
What can you and the student expect from piano lessons in this studio?
You can expect a full 30 minute lesson once a week until the student reaches the level that the teacher deems the student is ready to move into a school-age curriculum (7 years of age or upon completion of the “My First Piano Adventures” Course) then the lessons will increase to a 45 minute lesson once a week. Lessons will be filled with exercises to improve dexterity, along with assignments in a lesson book and writing book with progressive lessons designed for your student's age and ability level. When we feel the maturity and confidence of the student are ready, we will participate in Recitals and Evaluations.
When the student moves into the 45 minute lesson slot, the first or last 15 minutes of the lesson will be in theory. I would like to emphasis that theory is a chance to look at why music is written and played the way it is and also gives the student a chance to possibly compose and improvise at the piano with a working knowledge of what he/she is creating.
As I stated in the contract, I do not require set practice time. However, I do expect all instructions that are written in the assignment book to be accomplished by the next lesson. I do stress that daily practice is much more beneficial than long, lengthy practices several times a week.
When the student reaches 7 years of age you can expect interaction between the other students with a chance to compare the music they have learned and through friendly competition reach new goals. A group class once a quarter and a Spring Awards Recital will be required for this purpose.
There will be opportunities for performances in Tucson Music Teachers Association, Arizona State Music Teachers Association, Music Teachers National Association, Music Teachers of California activities as they occur during the year.
National Guild Auditions are in the Spring of the year. This is a performance evaluation (not a contest) that gives the student a chance to share their repertoire learned through the year with an unbiased and qualified evaluator.
You can expect recitals to be fun! I prepare my students for all evaluations and recitals with a vigor that gives them the self-esteem to perform without "petrifying fear". I do present to them the fact that they will be "anxiously nervous" but as long as we have prepared well the performance will be a success. The performance may not always be as good as we would like but nevertheless a success.
You can expect me to become a very close friend and mentor because I will be dealing directly with many emotions; in fact, I will become a "strange" new member to the family for (I hope) many years.
A well-performed piece of music is an emotional experience and a terrific outlet for today's stressful life. Each student receives a little part of me as I share my music with them.
You can expect it takes a minimum of two years for a beginner to know enough about the new language of music to be able to sightread their assignments with a minimum of teacher assistance. Until then we will be working hard to reach this two year goal.
Yes, there will be downs and ups and they are to be handled carefully. I must be made aware of them so that I can change the lessons accordingly.
Some students hang in there all the way through their senior years, but others even after their ups and downs are not going to study anymore. We will work through this and together we will decide when it is time.
A strange problem I have as a teacher is for some reason the students and parents seem to feel they are "bursting my bubble" if there are problems with the student's music study. It is quite the contrary, because I want only the best musical experience for my students.
PRESCHOOL STUDIO PROCEDURES
Lesson fees for a preschool student are a flat fee of $64.00 per month up to the age of 7 years of age. At which time the student reaches the age of 7 years, the flat fee will change to $95.00 per month. Additional preschool family members are a flat fee of $54.00 per month and/or $85.00 per month for a student 7 years of age or older. The fee is due at the first lesson of each month.
These lessons include a 30 minute private lesson once a week up to the age of 7 years. After 7 years of age the lessons will expand to 45 minutes. After 7 years of age the student will be able to attend the 1½ or 2 hour class lesson once a quarter plus a Spring Awards Recital.
There are 47 lessons per year. 35 lessons are during the school year from Labor Day through the 3rd week of May. The class has 1 week off for Thanksgiving and 2 weeks off for the Christmas Holidays.
During the months of June, July and August, there are 12 weeks of lessons. (See the Summer Lessons Section for more details.)
There is an initial nonrefundable fee of $30.00 for music literature which I will purchase for the student. You will receive an itemized list each time I buy literature. As the lessons proceed your initial fee will deplete and then you will be billed only as the student begins a new book.
All invoices are due and payable on the first day of the month. If payment is not received at the end of the fifteenth day of the month, an automatic late fee of $10.00 per student will be added to the invoice.
All music literature will be bought by myself. The student will need an acoustic piano or an 88-key electronic keyboard with pedal in good condition, a working metronome and a CD player and/or MP3 player. If you do not want to purchase a metronome, there are free apps on your smartphones and tablets available. They just need to be accessible to the student during practice time.
No lessons will be given during the holidays for Labor Day (which will be made up the following Friday), Thanksgiving, Christmas and Independence Day (which will be made up the following Friday).
What your fee pays for is the students’ assigned lesson time. After assigned lesson times is my family's time. Please do not ask me to make up lessons. It will be at my discretion if I make up the lesson. I will base this decision on crucial performances coming up and whether I have open lesson times to use for make-up lessons.
I will make up all lessons that I may miss for illness or any other reasons.
During the period of June 1 - August 31 I will make up any two absences when I am given a 24-hour notice. This is basically designed for summer vacations and/or summer camps.
If a student has not studied one year in my class by June 1 then I will require him/her to take three 4-week sessions of lessons during the summer. After one year of study in my class I will require only two 4-week sessions of lessons during the summer.
If this guideline is not adhered to, then I will be forced to use the vacant, unpaid lesson slot for a student from the waiting list and/or require payment of the month in lieu of losing the student's time.
Needless to say, I would like to see students study as much of the summer as possible because skills and knowledge will be lost with each absence.
TERMINATION OF LESSONS
In consideration of the time, planning, money and continued education that a music teacher spends for her students' lessons, please give no less than four weeks’ notice when terminating lessons; or in lieu of a notice, payment of the monthly fee for an additional month.
There will never be a reason for my terminating a student other than non-payment of lessons.
All students must perform in recitals. Students over 19 years of age will be given an option of performing or not. However, I feel a performance is an important goal that moves the student to advance.
Spring Awards Recital will be around the third week of May each year.
1½ to 2 hour group classes are held around the 2nd weekend of February, August and November. Attendance at two out of the three classes is compulsory because periodic performances bolster the confidence of the student. I do a lot of work to make these fun times to get to know more about music, play music games and play piano for each other without any adults except the teacher in attendance. Attendance counts towards the honor point award.
TUCSON MUSIC TEACHERS ASSOCIATION,
ARIZONA STATE MUSIC TEACHERS
AND MTAC COMPOSERS TODAY EVALUATIONS
I will be putting students in these activities as they become eligible. Some are designed for the early student levels, some only for advanced students and some for all students.
NATIONAL GUILD OF PIANO TEACHERS AUDITIONS
The National Guild Auditions are held in the Spring and much of what is prepared for the year can be used in the National Guild Auditions. Participation is a requirement for students between the ages of 5 and 18 years of age that start lessons before January of the current year. Over 19 years of age the Guild is an option.
I take great pride in the excellence of my preparation of students for these music activities. No student needs to worry about being prepared because we will do this together and the student will feel great pleasure in his/her achievements as long as their practice skills are exercised each day at home.
ACHIEVEMENT CHART AND AWARDS
I do not require a set standard of practice time. However, a good rule of thumb is:
30 minutes a day, six days a week for 5-10 years of age
45 minutes a day, six days a week for 11-13 years of age
1 hour a day, six days a week for 14 years of age and over
No proof of practice will be required other than a showing of good preparation for the lessons. Parents of young students can check their assignment books against the practice done to see if the student is doing his/her assignments.
An award will be given in the Spring Awards Recital each year for most points earned in preparation for lessons and participation in music activities.
POINTS POINTS EARNED FOR
5 GOOD preparation of lesson
10 EXCELLENT preparation of lesson
15 SUPERIOR preparation of lesson
20 PARTICIPATION in the Recitals and the National Guild Auditions