Kickoff! How It All Began
Hello! Thank you for taking time out of your day to read my blog. For my first post, I’m going to tell you the crazy story of how I became the teacher that I am today. Here goes!
My name is Lydia, and I love music. Love in big bold capital letters. I took traditional piano lessons from age 5 to 19. When I reference “traditional”, I’m talking about the learning process that has students read music & then after they learn to read music they learn how to play. I loved playing. Reading? Not so much.
Since an early age, I’ve had the ability to listen to a piece of music, and then sit down and play it – figuring it out as I went. This would get me in trouble in my traditional piano lessons because many times instead of learning the piece by reading the music, I learned it through listening to it after class and then I'd just memorize it. My teachers hated that I was avoiding reading music! One particular teacher even told me that I needed to “turn off my ear” the following week while practicing. I tried to follow her instructions (for a short while), but always questioned why ignoring the intuitive side of music was necessary.
In 2012, I took the leap, and started teaching traditional style piano lessons as a part time job while I traveled around the country working as a nanny. Lessons went alright, kids and parents learned – but slowly, and keeping them motivated and focused on learning and practicing took effort and a creative touch.
Then I found a new way to teach! One that is way more intuitive and fun for the students, and thus – much more fun and rewarding for me. This method takes a completely new approach to learning to play the piano by teaching students to play by ear (sounds familiar right?!). Let me try to explain: In traditional methods it is essential to learn how to read music from the start in order for you to play the piano and thus, your ability to play hinges on your ability to read - Timing, notes, pedal, math, dynamics… yep, ALL of it. Oh, and you have to actually know what to play on the piano. Ugh.
What if you just focused on playing on the piano first? (Hint: GREAT). With the method I now teach, the student has their focus on one particular learning process until it has been mastered by the student before going onto the next step. This process is so natural, and because of that it has astounding results. I still teach student how to read notes and other topics of music theory, I just wait until the student is ready before entering the reading process.
I love playing the piano, I love teaching Piano – and now my students love to learn! Win-Win-Win!
Until next time – cheers!