Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Finding "C" on the piano

Thank you to Rachel and her mom for sharing this with me! 

I think it is very helpful for our beginning piano students!



Monday, January 28, 2013

Welcome to Vincent and Tamar!

Please join me in a huge round of applause and a warm welcome to Mister Vincent and Miss Tamar as they join our piano family this week!  We are excited that both of you will be joining us during an extra special fun week in the piano studio!

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Happy Birthday to Mozart!

Happy 257th Birthday to Mozart!

This week will be a week full of special activities for our piano students to celebrate the life and work of Mozart!

I don't want to spoil all of the fun for our students.  However, here are a few photos as a sneak peak!

Saturday, January 26, 2013

The Sudbury Patch

Thank you to The Sudbury Patch for featuring us as the number 3 item in the "5 Things to Start Your Day" on 12/31/12!  Be sure to check out www.sudbury.patch.com for everything you need to know about our town!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Free Sheet Music on Pinterest!

I know that this may not be a surprise to most of you and many of you are probably already using this resource. 

However, I JUST made the biggest and most exciting discovery of my day... 


I was once a Pinterest skeptic.  I have been on for awhile - but only used it every once in awhile.  Today is the day that this has changed for me!  Today is the day that I discovered another terrific and free resource for my students.  Today is the day that I just might run out of ink and paper for my printer in the piano studio! 

Happy pinning and printing!

Welcome to Master Charlie!

Please join me in a huge, warm welcome to our newest pianist, Charlie!  I can hardly wait to get started on working away at the piano with you!

Monday, January 21, 2013


SMILEMass (Small Miracles In Life Exist) is turning 3!  They are throwing themselves a birthday party and everyone is welcome to attend!  Tom & I are going along with some friends!  Please join us and bid on our favorite auction item... 5 thirty minute piano lessons in our studio!

For more information about SMILEMass and their current beach project, visit www.smilemass.org

Also check out the "In the News" video on the website!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Miss Katherine & Miss Annie

Please join me in welcoming Miss Annie and Miss Katherine to our piano family!   I am looking forward to working with both of you at the piano!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

A modern day piano studio

I don't know about you - but this does not look like a piano studio that I took lessons in as a kid...

Santa delivered this microphone to my house this year!  I am going to use this for Skype lessons.  I also hope to use it to record our students' recital work to create CDs.  Stay tuned!

We just purchased these speakers for recording the CDs and Skype lessons.

We use the I pad during lessons for the fun metronome apps, piano apps / games, YouTube videos, and  finding digital sheet music.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Thoughts for the day...


Some days are just down right better than others!  I am human and believe it or not, I get frustrated just like everyone else.  Well, today I have had to deal with a piano frustrating issue.  Nothing bad, nothing difficult - just challenging. 

But this not the point of this post...  The point of this post is about how when one door closes another one opens.  This post is about how all things happen for a reason.  So imagine my pleasant surprise when I received a message from another piano teacher who blogs that SHE posted about my blog article in HER blog article!  It simply made my day!  Which is perfect timing since I start my first lesson for the day in 20 minutes!  I needed a little piano boost and this fellow piano teacher unknowlingly just did so!



Here is an interesting perspective...
Research has proven that students who practice after their lesson on the exact same day will retain 95% of what they learned from the lesson.  If the student waits until the next day to practice the retention drops to 70%, and the retention worsens for very day they miss practice between lessons.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Upcoming Nursing Home Recital


For those of you who have been following our studio over the years, you already know that I love to have our students perform on the piano at nursing homes.  Well, our move to New England has changed many things about our lives but it has not how I feel about nursing home piano recitals!  

I strongly believe that playing the piano for nursing home residents is therapeutic for the residents.  It is an inter-generational activity that is enjoyed by all!  It is a great opportunity for younger students to be exposed to nursing home settings.  It is a fantastic chance for pianists to understand how playing the piano for others can be philanthropic.  It is a great way for the elderly residents to help the piano students by giving them the chance to practice performing in front of others!  The residents are always so very complimentary and kind.  It is truly a confidence booster for the students.

So, my own Grant & Ellie are practicing their pieces for our 1st nursing home recital in Sudbury! Grant & I are working on a duet!  Our duet is called "Building a Snow Fort".  Stay tuned!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Music Apps

What are your favorite music related apps for your smartphone or tablet?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Our power is back on...

Our power is back on after a 6 1/2 hour break.  All lessons will take place as scheduled today!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Piano Myths


Check out this link above about piano myths!  I found it to be a good read!

Monday, January 7, 2013

Sheet Music Sale

Happy Monday!
A great way to start off the first full week in the New Year is to stock up on music to help you with your resolutions to play more music!  My favorite on-line store is having a great sale on the Faber books I use during lessons.  Check out www.sheetmusicplus.com to take advantage of their sale!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Mister Theo AND Miss Sarah

I am excited to welcome Mister Theo AND Miss Sarah to our Note-worthy Experiences Family next week!  We are going to have a fabulous time learning and making music together!

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Piano lessons & IQ Study

From Forbes...
Sorry, Kids, Piano Lessons Make You Smarter
E.J. Mundell for HealthDayNews

Scales today, Harvard tomorrow?
It's sure to be music to parents' ears: After nine months of weekly training in piano or voice, new research shows young students' IQs rose nearly three points more than their untrained peers.

The Canadian study lends support to the idea that musical training may do more for kids than simply teach them their scales--it exercises parts of the brain useful in mathematics, spatial intelligence and other intellectual pursuits.

"With music lessons, because there are so many different facets involved--such as memorizing, expressing emotion, learning about musical interval and chords--the multidimensional nature of the experience may be motivating the [IQ] effect," said study author E. Glenn Schellenberg, of the University of Toronto at Mississauga.

A decade ago, researchers led by the University of Wisconsin's Frances Rauscher found that simply listening to Mozart triggered temporary increases in spatial intelligence.

While the "Mozart Effect" has proven difficult to replicate in subsequent studies, the idea that music or musical training might raise IQ took hold in the scientific community.

In his study, slated for publication in the August issue of Psychological Science, Schellenberg offered 12 Toronto-area 6-year-olds free weekly voice or piano lessons at the Royal Conservatory of Music, described by Schellenberg as Canada's "most prestigious music conservatory."

He chose 6-year-olds because their developing brains still retain a large degree of "plasticity," defined as "the ability of the brain to change and adapt to environmental stimuli."

On the other hand, children younger than 6 were deemed less suitable "because you also want the lessons to be rigorous enough, and you can't really start serious musical training with 4-year-olds," he said.

Schellenberg also wanted to separate out the effect on IQ of training in music per se, from that of training in the arts in general. To do this, he provided a third group of 6-year-olds with free, weekly drama classes. A fourth group of 6-year-olds received no classes during the study period.

The children's IQs were tested beforehand using the full Weschler intelligence test, which assesses various aspects of intellectual function in ten separate areas. All of the children, Schellenberg explained, "came into my lab in the summer before first grade and they had the entire test, which takes about three hours."

Following that initial assessment, the children "went off to first grade and to the four different groups that they were assigned. Then, in between first and second grade, they came back to the lab and were retested."

At the time of retesting, all of the students--even those not enrolled in music or drama classes--displayed increases in IQ of at least 4.3 points, on average, Schellenberg said. "That's just a common consequence of going to school," he said.

Focusing first on the children taking the drama class, Schellenberg found they "didn't differ [in increased IQ] from those in the no-lessons group." However, kids taking the acting class did tend to score higher on aspects of sociability than other children, probably due to the cooperative nature of putting on a play.

The only added boost to IQ came to kids taught either piano or voice. According to Schellenberg, children in the music groups "had slightly larger increases in IQ than the control groups," averaging 7-point gains in their IQ scores from the previous year--2.7 points higher than children placed in either the drama or no-lessons group.

This increase in IQ is considered small but significant, and was evident across the broad spectrum of intelligence measured by the Weschler test, Schellenberg said.

Commenting on the study, Rauscher said, "It certainly supports a lot of the research that we've done in the past." The Canadian researcher's results deviate from her own, she said, "in that they found this effect for general intelligence."

Rauscher's work has tended to focus on music's effects on spatial intelligence--the ability to think through three-dimensional puzzles without resorting to an actual model.

Although it remains a theory, she speculated that "understanding music, particularly learning to translate musical symbols into sound, might be transferring to other abilities, because they are sharing similar neuro pathways."

Both Schellenberg and Rauscher agreed that, ideally, music lessons should be available to children as part of their education.

"We don't have any evidence that music is unique in this regard," Schellenberg said, "but on the other hand, it's certainly not bad for you. Our studies suggest that extracurricular activities are indeed enriching to development."

Unfortunately, adults who might feel emboldened to pick up the guitar or stretch their vocal skills may not receive the same boost to brainpower.

"I really think you'll find the strongest effects for young children," Rauscher said. "That's not to say that you won't find anything in adults, but I think it would be a lot harder and would really take a lot longer."
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Happy New Year!

Happy 2013 to you and your family!

I hope this is the best year ever for you!

I, like many others, have lofty and ambitious goals for the new year!  I love Thanksgiving and Christmas!  However, there is something about the fresh start of a new year that is motivating and exciting!

What are your New Year's Resolutions?