In this issue...
Celebrating Louise GossThis issue celebrates the legacy of legendary piano pedagogue Louise Goss. Also in this issue: a discussion on lesson planning, prelude sets for every occasion, and planning for college auditions.
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As I reflect on changes I would like to make in the new year (aka New years resolutions), I’d like to share something I’ve noticed about piano teachers. At the risk of ruffling a few feathers, I’m just going to say it:
Piano teachers tend to be workaholics.
Perhaps that’s too much of a generalization and perhaps I think this because I tend to be one myself. But I think it’s safe to say that anyone who works from home has a tendency to be a workaholic. It’s just difficult to separate ourselves from our work when we work from home. Take a moment to do some inventory:
- Do you frequently find yourself thinking about piano related things on the days you are not teaching?
- Do you teach more than 5 days a week?
- Do you have any large blocks of time during the week in which you are not thinking of music related matters?
- Do you have any free evenings when you can go out with friends who are not self-employed?
- Does your family complain that you work too much?
In 2006, I was asked by my publisher to attend a national music education conference to help market my new jazz piano method. Lacking sales experience, I somewhat nervously asked anyone who happened to pass by the exhibit booth, "Are you interested in teaching improvisation to your students?" Since most piano teachers are inherently friendly, I was relieved when most of them agreed to take a polite first look at my books. A few, however, surprised me by reacting indignantly with the likes of, “Why, certainly not!" before proceeding down the aisle (and inevitable extinction) to peruse the latest editions of Fur Elise.
A Balanced Teaching Philosophy
There’s nothing wrong with teaching what we’ve come to call classical music. It develops great technique, increases music appreciation, and develops an awareness of our musical roots.
Clavier Companion is proud to sponsor this exciting contest showcasing the talent of tomorrow's teachers!
Grand Prize: Publication in a forthcoming issue of Clavier Companion.
Secondary Prizes: Publication on the Clavier Companion website.
Writers are free to choose any topic relating to the field of piano pedagogy and write a 1,500 word article. Submissions must be received by June 1st, 2014.
To download the official rules and regulations for the 2014 Clavier Companion Collegiate Writing Contest, click here.
To read the two runner up essays for the 2013 Writing Contest, click here.