Congratulations to our two winners…

Congratulations to:

Mary Beth Purchase and jberkowitz2008 for winning a copy of  PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This Is THEORY.

(Mary Beth, I was able to send you an email. jberkowitz2008- I will need you to email me at within 72 hours to claim your prize!)

I really enjoyed reading all the fun ideas teachers are using to make theory fun in their studio! If you haven’t had a chance be sure to read the comments from everyone!

Be sure to pick up your copy of PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This Is THEORY for your studio! Don’t forget it’s reproducible! Enjoy!

Music Art

Today is my daughter’s birthday. She is a Senior this year and loves to draw and make art projects, always have and she is really talented at it. When she was small (and even still- but not as bad) she would save anything that you and I may call “trash” because it could be used to make something. Even though that drove me crazy, because she never wanted to throw anything away; I always admired her creativity and thinking outside the box. So today in celebration of her birthday, I thought I would share a fun music art idea.

Lately she has enjoyed making crayon art. There are a couple different techniques in crayon art. Here is the art I commissioned her to do for my piano lab room. This would be the “splash” technique.



IMG_2627While these aren’t “music” related art, I wanted to show the other crayon art technique that she made for us for Christmas…

My son is a kingdom heart fan, so the figure you see represents the main character of Kingdom Hearts…



My husband is a Dr. Who fan so she made him a tardis crayon art canvas…



And this one is the lovely piece she did for me, which shows a combination of a couple different techniques…

IMG_1947She also did a cute tinkerbell piece for a friend, but I forgot to take a picture of it. It’s fun to have unique art in the studio. My students have enjoyed the new art and it fits perfectly with my lab room. By the way, my daughter does take commissioned art projects (trying to save money for college) if you are interested, just shoot me an email and I can pass along the info.

Tech Tuesday: A Tech filled day!

There are so many things I want to share for Tech Tuesday I thought I’d share several technology tips for you to enjoy this week!

1) If you subscribe to you may already know that there is a new feature called “Lifetime Musicianship” students can do when they log in! I’m super excited for this feature as it will make my life much easier. I currently assign specific games each week, with Lifetime Musicianship I don’t think I will need to do that anymore except on occasions. See for yourself what it is all about with this video. It is still in the beta phase but we are able to try it out now! Thanks MLC for all the work that went into this feature!

2) I had my first podcast interview. It was so fun to be interviewed by Andrea Dow with Because I have listened to Andrea’s podcasts before, her friendly voice was already familiar to me when we connected. Though we have never met in person (yet!) I feel like I already know her. Check out the interview here.

3) Heads up! Wondershare has a brand new product called Tidy My Music. They will be doing a one-day Giveaway campaign scheduled for the 28th of August 2013. (Tomorrow!) I will be reviewing this product soon but in the meantime, keep your eye out for the giveaway campaign!

4) Moosic Studio will be updating their app which will include invoicing sometime this week. When this happens the price will go up substantially! If you were on the fence, now is the time to jump off and grab it. Even if you don’t have your iPad yet, but know you will get one eventually, you can still download it now and sync it to your iPad later.

That’s it for today, more to come next Tuesday!

“PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This Is THEORY” book review

They did it again! Andrea and Trevor Dow with created another AWESOME resource that has me super excited! If you haven’t heard of it yet, PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This Is THEORY is their latest and greatest resource teachers can use with their students. BUT this is not your ordinary theory book, oh no! This is what I would call a theory activity book. PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This Is THEORY gets students using their imagination playing games, hands on activities, creating during the lesson, in the car and at home. Creativity is what it is all about!

Watch: PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This is THEORY promo video

PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This Is THEORY is chock full of 88 activities divided into 9 chapters. I will go through some samples in those chapters in a bit. The activities are geared for students 6-11 years old, but I found that there are some activities I think even some of my teenagers would enjoy. They are not in any particular order or level. You customize their activity with what they are learning at the lesson. It is a perfect resource for those teaching moments that call for something special!

I wanted to share a sample page from each section so you can get an idea of what fun you can have with your students when you purchase this book (because I know you will want to!)


“Piano Action Star” allows the students to set the tone in their music and create something unique using the dynamics where they think they should go. This can lead up to many creative opportunities!

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Here is my student doing “Be Nosey”. Teacher calls out different articulations, the student plays a note matching that articulation mark. Boys in particular like this activity!

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“Dinner with Fortissimo and Giocoso” is not only teaching the student what different italian terms mean, but the entire family! I like to suggest when students do this activity at home, that they help their mom make an Italian dinner. Screen Shot 2013-08-23 at 2.05.57 PM


“Whole Step, Half Step Tic Tac Toe” puts a new spin on the game!

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“Rock, Paper, Scissors… Sharp, Flat, Natural” is a spin off of… you guessed it! Rock, Paper, Scissors ACCIDENTAL style!

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How about shark action turning major 2nds to minor 2nds with “JAWS!”

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I love sounds stories. They open the possibilities for creativity within our students. “Once Upon a Time” uses a sound story to create major and minor sounds with chords.

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“Morse Code Mission” is a fun worksheet style activity decoding a secret message from note values and rests.

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“Time Signature Treasure Chest” is a fun activity for figuring out the time signatures. An adaption to make it a little harder is to have the teacher play a piece without the student seeing the score and they figure out the signature.

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These were just a small sample of some of the activities you can find in PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This Is THEORY. This book lends itself to be very adaptable and expandable. You can use these activities during private lessons, group lessons, camps, workshops, pretty much wherever and however you want to.

PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This Is THEORY is available to purchase here for $39.99. The best part?! It is reproducible! When you purchase this book, it allows you to print the whole book or just a page at a time as needed as many times with as many of your students as you want. How can you lose?

Now for the FUN part! Andrea Dow has graciously offered two lucky readers of this blog to win a copy of PSSST… Your Piano Teacher Thinks This Is THEORY! Be sure to like TeachPianoToday on Facebook!

To enter, leave a comment below describing a fun theory idea or two that you like to do in your studio with your students.  Deadline to enter is by Thursday, August 29th at 10:00pm (mountain time).

(*Winner MUST respond within 72 hours of announcement or another winner will be chosen*) The winner will be announced on this blog and on the FPSResources Facebook page by Friday, August 30th. Be sure you subscribe to the blog and on our Facebook page so you don’t miss out seeing if you are a winner!

Disclaimer:  I received this book in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own. 

Tech Tuesday: SightReadMinor

A month and a half ago I reviewed an app called SightReadPlus. In my review I mentioned a couple apps in the works, including one called SightReadMinor. Well the good news, SightReadMinor is now available!

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Keeping with the same format as SightReadPlus, SightReadMinor will listen and evaluate your playing.

In SightReadMinor, you will find 2,880 short sight-reading exercises in ALL minor keys for left and and right hand. (separate)  Time signatures vary between 2/4, 3/4, 4/4 and 6/8 with rhythm values ranging from quarter, dotted quarter, half, dotted half, whole and eighth notes. The exercises are in sequenced order so students will advance forward. Also included are pentascales for students to practice.

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One of my favorite features with both of these apps is the ability to keep track of individual progress. If you missed the SightReadPlus review be sure to go back and read it as SightReadMinor is very similar but now with minor exercises. Both apps are for the iPad and are highly recommended.

Melissa Harris has graciously offered to give away 2 copies of the SightReadMinor app! To enter leave a comment below. Deadline to enter is by this Thursday, August 22nd 10:00pm (mountain time). Don’t delay!

(*Winner MUST respond within 72 hours of announcement or another winner will be chosen*) The winner will be announced on this blog and on the FPSResources Facebook page by Friday, August 23rd. Be sure you subscribe to the blog and on our Facebook page so you don’t miss out seeing if you are a winner! GIVEAWAY HAS EXPIRED

Disclaimer:  I received this app in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own.