Archive for the ‘Newsletter’ Category


June Newsletter

Saturday, June 30th, 2012

Before we get into the full swing of summer, I just want to let you know a few important things about next year. First, I have updated my policies a bit (available at http://katespianostudio.ca/prospective-students/studio-policies/2012-2013-policies/). Important changes include:

  • Lesson prices are still the same ($20/half hour), but we are going with a regular monthly rate instead, to be paid at the beginning of the month – $76/month for Tues/Wed/Thurs and $70/month for Mondays (because they miss 3 lessons in the year due to holidays). I may change my start date to Sept. 10 instead of Sept. 4, in which case Tues/Wed/Thu lessons will then be $74/month.
  • I am no longer buying books and selling them back to my students. Instead, I will give students/parents the name (and often a picture) of the books they are to purchase, and they can purchase them wherever they wish (e.g. Long & McQuade, amazon.com or amazon.ca, etc.).

I am expecting a greater number of students in the 2012-2013 year, and as a result, I have created a schedule at http://katespianostudio.ca/prospective-students/availability/ (it’s at the bottom) with my availability for the Fall. If you are planning on returning in the Fall, please fill out the lesson time request form (http://katespianostudio.ca/lesson-time-request-form/) as soon as you can. I will be using each student’s availability to create a schedule, and in the event of any time conflicts, the first student to submit a request will receive his/her time. I would like to receive all requests by August 31 so that I can get everything organized!

I will be emailing everyone mid August to remind them of lessons starting in September and see who is returning for the upcoming year. Thanks for a great year, and I hope you have a great summer!

May Newsletter

Wednesday, June 27th, 2012

Upcoming Dates

June 1 – Final Piano Recital at 7:00 pm at the McKillop United Church (2329 15 Avenue South). Please see below for details.

June 2 – Adult student gathering at 10:30 am at Betty Jo Radley’s studio (810 Kodiak Bay North). Anyone over 18 is encouraged to join other adult students for a morning of music sharing – and if you don’t want to play, just come to listen!

June 2 – Exam repertoire recital at 11:30 am at Betty Jo Radley’s studio (810 Kodiak Bay North). Not just for students preparing for an exam, but it’s another opportunity to get used to performing.

Final Piano Recital

As mentioned above under “Upcoming Dates”, my final recital is going to be on Friday, June 1 at 7:00 pm at the McKillop United Church. I am joining forces with another piano teacher who also has a small studio (Lorrie Wittke). It’s a great opportunity to perform, and students need not be perfect in order to perform!

If your student is planning on performing:

  • Choose a piece that he or she likes to play and can play with confidence (it does not need to be memorized).
  • Please let me know by the evening of Monday, May 28 if your student is planning on performing so we can get the information on the program.

Sight Reading Practise

I mentioned previously that I have a page on my website for Music Technology. I want to highlight some websites that will help students build sight reading skills.

Jayde Musica Theory Game may be my favourite sight reading game so far. It moves a bit faster than Grand Staff Defender (so choose one that suits your starting needs) and it also gives you notes in a sequence – so you have to get all two/three/etc. correct before you can move on. It leads you to a higher level more quickly too, so if you’re a bit faster at this, you’re not slowed down. You can select EASY, MEDIUM, or HARD levels, you can extend the range of the staff to make it more difficult, and you can choose only TREBLE or BASS clef (or both). (Don’t do alto or tenor clef unless you know what they are!) A very versatile game!

Grand Staff Defender  is a lot like Jayde Musica, except that you start out really slow (great for beginners) and it takes you a while to get to the higher levels if you are really good at it. There are fewer options to customize your practise than Jayde Musica, but that could be beneficial if you just want to get started!

April Newsletter

Friday, April 20th, 2012

 

Kate’s Piano Studio Newsletter – April 2012

Email: kate@katespianostudio.ca Phone: 403-894-8557
214 Keystone Lane West, Lethbridge, AB T1J 2R2

Upcoming Dates

April 6-13 – No Lessons (available if desired) (http://katespianostudio.ca/calendar/)
April 21 – Group class at 1:30 pm at Betty Jo Radley’s studio (810 Kodiak Bay North). All students are encouraged to participate in this group class, as it is a low-stress opportunity for you to perform in front of a small group of other piano students! NO COST.
May 12 – LRMTA recital at 2:30 pm in the University Recital Hall W-570. Play on a grand piano in a real recital hall!
May 22-25 – Piano Class Festival – This is a smaller festival than Kiwanis, and it’s only for piano students. It’s a great opportunity to enter a small festival, and we have a wonderful adjudicator (Jesse Plessis). $10/entry, April 15 deadline.
June 2 – Adult student gathering at 10:30 am at Betty Jo Radley’s studio (810 Kodiak Bay North). Anyone over 18 is encouraged to join other adult students – you can even just listen the first time!
June 2 – Exam repertoire recital at 11:30 am at Betty Jo Radley’s studio (810 Kodiak Bay North). Not just for students preparing for an exam, but it’s another opportunity to get used to performing.

Alberta Registered Music Teachers’ Association

First, I want to let everyone know that I am now a member of the Alberta Registered Music Teachers Association, so I am officially an RMT. The ARMTA website (http://www.armta.ca/) states that “The designation RMT (Registered Music Teacher) is an assurance to the public that the teacher has met specified educational standards. Our members all hold degrees/diplomas from universities, colleges, and/or music conservatories”, so I am proud to be a member!

Music Technology

I have created a new page on my website for Music Technology (http://katespianostudio.ca/technology-for-learning/). There are a lot of great apps, websites, games, etc. out there, but I want to highlight this iPod app in particular!
Sight Read Music Quiz for Piano Lite (FREE)
This app is great practise for sight reading. You see a note on a staff and you press the correct piano key. It only has one octave of keys, but you can’t expect much on a tiny iPod screen!

Sight Read Music Quiz for Piano ($1.99)
You can get the full version for $1.99 and it will keep track of your progress and the notes you are struggling with! This app is great for beginners and more advanced students who need a little more sight reading practise.

February newsletter

Tuesday, February 7th, 2012

Hello students and parents!

This is the first email I’ve sent out to everyone – I hope it finds everyone well. I have a few things I’d like to let you know.

First, Family Week is coming up (February 20-24 for most or all schools), so lessons are on hold for that week. If you’d still like to have lessons that week, that is absolutely fine – just let me know via email/text/phone/at the lesson. The Lethbridge School District calendar is available at http://lethsdweb.lethsd.ab.ca/OurDistrict/Documents/2011-12%20-%20Draft%20December%207,%202010.pdf, so it looks like we’ll be encountering the same thing in April.

Second, I’d like to let you know about my website – http://katespianostudio.ca. I’ve spent some time working on it and I’ve had a lot of help. It’s still a work in progress, but it is where you can go if you need to switch your lesson time with one of my empty slots or with another student. (Go to http://katespianostudio.ca/switching-lessons/ or go to the main page, click on “Current Students” and then “Switching Lessons”. You will need to login using the username and password I provided in the last email. You can change the password once you login.

Next, I have a new YouTube channel at http://www.youtube.com/katespianostudio – right now, it has mostly old videos, and a few new ones. They are all pop covers, but as time goes on, there will be more variety. I would also like to have some videos of my students on there eventually – with permission, of course. My plan is to have a new video every week. I also subscribe to channels that I think will have videos that my students will appreciate or learn from, so it can be a great extra resource!

And lastly, I also have a facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/katespianostudio – feel free to go “like” it. I will be posting my YouTube videos there, as well as polls about peoples’ experiences with music, teaching, piano, etc. So far, the first poll has been very interesting! (I asked people why they had quit music lessons if they had ever taken them, and also what instruments they can play. Check out the results for yourself! I’m trying to incorporate the findings into my teaching.)

Thanks for your time, and I’m looking forward to the rest of the year!

December Newsletter

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011

Christmas Lessons
Christmas is coming and that means we have some scheduling to work out. I am planning on my lesson schedule following the same as the schools in the area — my last lessons will be on the December 21/22/23 and we will start back up again on January 10/11/12. If you would like piano lessons during the Christmas break, just let me know. I will be gone from December 26-30, so then lessons would resume the week after (January 3/4/5).

Group Classes
I am also hoping to have a small group class for my younger students (ages 7-13) and another one for my older students (14 and up). These classes are intended to give students an opportunity to learn as a group and perform in a low stress environment. I want to ensure that we have enough interest and availability before planning one. Group classes are $10 per student and will be 30-60 minutes.

Year End Recital
I would like to have a small recital at the end of June to showcase what my students have been working on this year. This is a great opportunity to perform for a slightly larger audience (20-30 people) and to perform on a grand piano. At this point, I am trying to gauge interest. As a recital space must be booked, recitals are $10/student.