I want to thank each student and each parent for a great first week of September lessons. Many of you have begun school this week and keeping your lesson on track was probably a challenge, but I appreciate your effort.

I want to give a big welcome the newest students to the studio: Anna (piano and voice); Dana, Brendan and their mom, Carrie (all piano); Kristin (piano); and, Kayla (piano). Additionally, some of my current students have added another instrument: Lauren (added flute to piano); and, Sofia (added voice to piano). Welcome to one and all!

Who wants predictable success and reduced stress? We all do! The student, the parent and I, the teacher, do!

I know that adding piano practice to your school and home routine is very important to helping reduce stress in your home. To give a little incentive to “getting off on the right foot” for the school year, I have introduced a team Perfect Practice Challenge. I know that if you make practice a predictable part of each day, success will be the result. Each student will practice better, perform better, be happier about piano all around, and tension will be reduced at home.

Have you ever noticed that the nanny-type programs always make scheduling and planning a main part of the solution to the chaos and anxiety that is present in the homes televised? It is because children like to be able to predict what their scheduling will be and know what is expected of them. I encourage each family to put down on paper, or a calendar, what the scheduling will usually be for each child. Then, the stress will primarily come from the “unexpected events” that life brings us (and we know there can be plenty of those).

Having a “Team Challenge” encourages students to meet one another, cheer for one another and realize that their decisions have individual consequences, as well as affect others on the team.

For additional ideas for making practice and lessons easier, visit the Parents page!

The Perfect Practice Challenge is a team competition. The four teams are listed on the Students page. I will keep record of each students practice score for the previous week, then post the weekly results on the Students page. The Perfect Practice Challenge will run each week from now through the recital and awards ceremony in November (exact date of the event will be announced soon). The winning team will be announced at the recital and a party will be given for one winning team.

An individual will earn points for the team only when “Perfect Practice” is obtained. Perfect Practice is a minimum of five practices, following the printed practice plan instructions. Bonus points may be earned for specific “extra” opportunities. More details about those opportunities will follow.

Music Money will still be earned by the individual students for every practice they complete. I know how much they each enjoy being able to spend or save their money for items at the “Studio Store.”

Instead of waiting to gather several ideas or announcements together and producing a newsletter, I am going to try to give information more frequently on this new blog page. I know that communication is important and I am going to try to be faster at delivering information that you might want or need through this avenue with links to/from Facebook, Google+ and Twitter. As always, if you have questions or comments, please contact me!

Warmly, Miss Kristi 🙂