Anna

This week, we began by doing a quick warm-up with the C major scale. We then started to look at Stars and Stripes Forever. Anna found the beginning to be very comfortable to play, but she was still having trouble playing the last three lines of the piece. As I know Anna has limited time to practice, I suggested she just practice the 3rd-last line this week as her focus, instead of beginning her practice session by reviewing familiar material.

We then took a look at Alberti Etude. Anna made some awesome improvement in her right hand! We then worked on adding the left hand to the first two lines of the piece. I suggested she practice it this way:

  • review right hand material
  • review left hand material
  • write in any notes Anna has trouble reading or makes mistakes playing directly on the music
  • play hands together 2-3 times.

Afterwards, we looked at her Theory book and reviewed key signatures with sharps.

At home

Stars and Stripes Forever: Anna should practice the 3rd-last line first before doing any other work on this piece. After reviewing this line 2-3 times, she can go back and review the opening material.

Alberti Etude: Anna should work on playing the first two lines hands together using the steps I highlighted above.

Theory: I’d like Anna to work on pages 2 and 3. On page 2, I’d like Anna to write in all the notes in the exercise to help strengthen her note reading.

Anna should practice for 15-20 minutes every day!

Megane

This week, we began by reviewing where D and B are on the staff. Megane is still mixing them up sometimes, but she’s greatly improved since we began our lessons! She even noticed a couple times she played the wrong note and corrected herself. She is also greatly improving on using the correct fingering that’s suggested in the book!

We played through two songs that feature E, and I played the teacher duet part. It was a lot of fun! We then began to learn about a new note on the staff: A. We briefly looked at some songs that use A, but I’m mostly concerned with making sure Megane feels 100% confident playing the E songs before we move on.

At home

Megane should review The Shoe Cobbler and The Rain this week. She should practice for 5 minutes every day. One great way to practice is by teaching someone else. I encourage a parent ask Megane how to play the songs she’s working on.

Sacha

This week, Sacha forgot his book, but we still worked on a few things. We did some ear training exercises in which I asked Sacha to identify a major and minor triad. Sacha did a great job with this and afterwards built his own major triads!

We also reviewed the concept of musical form, especially the structure of a “question and answer” phrase structure. I talked about how in traditional music, a piece has a key that it’s centred around. In the case of his current piece, that would be C! When the first part of a phrase ends on a note that isn’t C, it has an incomplete sound to it. Then, when the musical material is repeated, in the second part the ending of the phrase would be on C to give a satisfactory conclusion for the listener’s ear.

We also briefly looked at the C major scale in contrary motion.

This week

I will want to hear Sacha play The Major and the Minor next week, but Sacha is free to start working on the next piece in his book. He should play for 15 minutes every day!

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