The Beauty of Stretching Moments

I am an introvert by nature. And because of that, I have had many of what I like to call, “stretching moments” in my life. I remember one of those stretching moments very clearly when I was growing up. When I was a teenager my Mom was the choir director at church. She decided to give me the job to call all the choir members to remind them about choir practice each week. I couldn’t tell you how awful that was for me at the time. I literally thought I would die making these phone calls. To help me get […]

Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday. My hope is that you 1) took a break and 2) spent at least some of it not doing anything related to teaching. If you didn’t, make it a goal this year to do exactly that, perhaps this summer. Breaks are not only good for us teachers, but they are equally beneficial for our students. Over the years, I have written several posts on burnout. If you are feeling a bit of burnout, you are not alone. Burnout is very real and more common than you know. Here is a link to several […]

12 DAYS OF INSPIRATION DAY 3: Three Simple Ways to Reduce Stress this Year

I am collaborating with some other piano ed bloggers for a 12-day inspiration blogging journey. Today is Day 3! (Scroll to the end of the post to see the others you may have missed) One thing that I have noticed more and more among teachers regardless of what they teach is how burned out everyone is. And really it’s not just teachers, it’s my friends, family, neighbors, everyone is just plain ol’ burned out. Burnout is real. One big culprit of burnout is stress. So I wanted to share today 3 ways to reduce stress this year. These simple things […]

Mistakes CAN be a GOOD thing!

The other day I had a student come in for her lessons a little frustrated because the piece that she was learning did not sound at all like it did when I had played it. Something was clearly wrong but she could not figure out what to do. She said to me, “I even wrote in all the notes to make sure I was doing it correctly.” It didn’t take me long to see that she had written the treble notes for the bass clef. As she was playing her bass…. I mean treble notes in the bass clef alone, […]

NCKP 2017 Photo Highlights

I thought I would post all the “behind the scenes” outside the sessions separately as I took quite a few pictures (but still missed a bunch!). I hope you enjoy! Tuesday, July 25, 2017 Lynnette and I met at the Phoenix, AZ airport and flew over to Chicago on Tuesday night.   Wednesday, July 26, 2017 One of my favorite things about attending conferences like this is meeting/seeing those who I know online! Thursday, July 27, 2017 Friday, July 28, 2017 Saturday, July 29, 2017   NCKP went by so quickly. It’s amazing how time truly does fly when you […]

NCKP 2017 Saturday Sessions

Willis Showcase It was the last day of NCKP and Glenda Austin was the perfect person to kick it off. The theme to this showcase was “Happy Birthday Mr. Gillock!” showcasing many of Mr. Gillock’s pieces. If you are you are friends with Glenda on Facebook then you probably have seen her little video “snippets” that she has shared. She decided to take those snippets and create a complete book called Holiday Encores which include those short Christmas pieces. This was a fun surprise and I’m so excited to play through them. One could not celebrate Mr. Gillock’s birthday without a birthday treat, […]

NCKP 2017 Friday Sessions

Strike a Chord Showcase  The first showcase of the morning that I attended was by Elyse Weakley who developed an app called Strike a Chord. I met Elyse several years back at an MTNA conference. At that time Strike a Chord was brand new so I was looking forward to seeing what additions have been made. Strike a Chord is an iOS app where students are learning and playing chord symbols that guide them through improvisation and composition projects that they can record. If you want some hands on creating along with theory application, Strike a Chord is an easy […]