from Katie Levine, District II Director

from Katie Levine, District II Director
Thanks for having me at the LWMTA meeting on Tuesday! It was really nice to meet everyone, I had a lot of fun. Here are some of the responses to the prompt that I thought could be fun to send out to your members
How would you describe LWMTA in one word?
  • Great
  • Events
  • Friendly
  • Close-knit
  • Fun
  • Supportive
What is your favorite part about being a member of LWMTA?
  • Getting time with colleagues! Being a teacher can be so isolating sometimes.
  • Connections
  • Having supportive members
  • The lovely and talented colleagues!
  • Enjoying getting to know members
  • Everyone is very supportive and we all share information that is helpful to our teaching career and often times to our personal lives
What is your biggest teaching challenge lately?
  • Getting some students to practice regularly
  • High schoolers with no time
  • Correcting forms. Teaching them to relax their hands and arms
  • Finding supplemental repertoire that is age appropriate and also representing a diversity of composers
  • discerning the precocious transfer student’s needs
  • Convincing students to play in recitals and festivals. Also, it’s hard to convince parents to buy an acoustic piano for their child. Most students have an electric piano and it’s hard to teach them good technique.
What are some of your favorite games/apps/resources to teach note-reading skills?
  • For young students, I have a whiteboard with staff and magnets for notes
  • Sproutbeat!
  • Flash cards and staff lines on the floor
  • allowing students to draw staves and notes on my iPad. Also, Glori Saint-Germain animals for each keyboard note name
  • flashcards and
  • note flash cards and magnetic boards. Theory books and note reading/writing books.
What are some of your favorite games/apps/resources to teach ear-training skills?
  • also sproutbeat!
  • listen to the note and try to hear it in their minds ear before singing it
  • Bennett Capp ear training books
  • singing their music, copy-cat singing
  • I like to play little melodies and ask my students to try and copy me
What are some of your favorite games/apps/resources to teach rhythm skills?
  • marching the beat, saying the rhythm-dancing, clapping, anything that helps them feel the pulse in their body and then layer the rhythms on top of the beat
  • “Secret knocking” game – tell young students to copy a knocking rhythm
  • Bennet Capp ear training books
  • Sproutbeat
Any other favorite games/apps/resources?
  • Helping students to achieve perfect repetitions of a trouble spot. Place 5 objects (finger puppets make them laugh) on the left side of the keyboard. Each perfect performance an object jumps to the other side. Frogs are fun too. They must get 5 in a row, a mistake and all the objects have to be moved back.
  • listening to music during lessons and talking about what the song made them think about
  • notes trainer
  • music tutor (plus)
What advice do you wish you could have given yourself at the beginning of your teaching career?
  • Don’t talk so much! Give just one or two points to focus on in all their repertoire. Don’t try to dump everything I know on them in one lesson!
  • Ask for advice more often
  • Be more business-focused. Have a clear idea of who you are teaching and what you are teaching.
  • Be open-minded. Be flexible.
  • Let the student be more accountable for their progress
  • Have a lesson structure in place, but don’t be afraid to change it up.