Focusing on your iPad Camera: Take 1.5

Hello loyal readers. If you received this for the second time, please forgive! I’ve had a few technical glitches with my site and am reposting this most recent blog.  Thanks for your patience. I hope you find this article and upcoming series inspirational to your teaching. Best wishes from my iPad Piano studio to yours…

With all the available apps, it’s easy to overlook one that is Holding Electronic Tablet PC In Handsnative to most smart phones or tablets.
Similar to a mirror, the camera serves as a valuable tool of revelation providing instant and accurate feedback.

This opening paragraph I originally wrote for a Clavier Companion article. After writing the article for the must-have-mag (get it here), I decided to expand upon this theme and design a series of posts at 88pianokeys.me dedicated to using the incredibly handy and valuable app–the camera. Continue reading

Don’t Miss This Webinar on Music Tech Time

10570470_340398719495309_6756791937224037742_n

Hi, again….

For some reason my recent reblogging of Jennifer Foxx’s post did NOT work. My apologies.

I wanted to make sure you know about her upcoming free webinar on setting up a music tech lab. She explains it so well, I didn’t want to change a word. So, here’s her description with links included to RSVP for the event this coming Wednesday, January 21st.

JoyTunes is hosting a FREE webinar this Wednesday that I will be presenting! When thinking about a subject for the webinar, I thought teachers might enjoy learning a bit more about starting a music tech lab in your studios. I have had a tech lab for almost 20 years now and it has been a huge benefit in my studio. And what better way to take advantage of the Piano Maestro app than having a lab students can go to before or after their lessons.

In this presentation I will be going through the Ins and Outs of Starting a Music Tech Lab. We will start with what you will want, need or consider having in your lab, go through some scheduling options and resources on what to use during lab time.

If there is anything specific you are hoping to hear during the webinar, please leave a comment below and I will do my best including it.

Because this will be done on Google+ you won’t need to register. Just RSVP so you don’t forget to attend! And if for some reason you can’t attend, it will be recorded so you can view it later. Though one of the benefits of attending live is being able to ask questions after I’m done. Click the picture above or here to RSVP.

Hope to see you Wednesday morning. Be sure to set your alarms! Don’t worry about getting dressed, you can stay in your p.j’s. I won’t see you… ;)

Oh and just a little heads up tip… you will also want to follow me on TpT by Wednesday… Click here to follow.

 

 

Free Flight with Conference Registration? Yes!

If you are not a fan of booking flights, airplanes, rest stops, packing or lost luggage,Register-Now-Infographic2-837x1024 then MusicEdConnect.com is for you. MusicEdConnect.com allows you to remain in the safety and warmth of your own home, Lazy Boy and fuzzy house coat.

Especially if you can’t leave due to family situations, finances and additional obligations, MusicEdConnect.com is perfect for you.

So, what is MusicEdConnect.com? It’s Continue reading

Got an iPad? Got Piano Students? Now What?

Keep calmAfter the novelty of the iPad wears off and before the reality of students reappearing at your door sets in, it’s time to determine how and when you will use your irresistible tablet in your studio.

Here are tips on how to turn your piano studio into a dynamic iPad piano studio.


Tip #1: Get to know your iPad.

Avoid wasting lesson time fiddling with the iPad. Master the basics ofiPad Revolution-Book-Comp-4 2 the device before you plan to use it in your teaching.

The iPad Piano Studio will give you a broad overview of the device, a list of top apps, tips on how to integrate them into your teaching and encouragement to stay current with the latest technology.

David Love’s iPad 101 video will acquaint you with the buttons, bells and whistles of your shiny, new tablet.


Tip #2 Make Time to Use the iPad

If you wish to integrate this tool into your teaching, then carve out the time to do so. Suggestions: Continue reading

Keep Your 2015 Studio Relevant with Pianoflix

After you received your undergrad music degree, performed a stellar recital of the classics, turned in that lofty thesis, passedIMG_2492 a professional accreditation exam or somehow earned shiny, new initials behind your name, you probably felt a great sense of achievement. Perhaps you felt like I did? After I received my Master of Arts in Piano Performance and Pedagogy, I felt my career was professionally wrapped up and ready to launch.

IMG_2496Although my intent is not to discount the importance of the academic achievements listed above, I’m wondering if you–like me–had your bubble burst, your box tipped upside down and your bow unraveled when you entered the real world of piano teaching? Yes, I could play and teach Beethoven and Ravel, I could design a sequential curriculum for early learners but when asked to read from a lead sheet, my skills fell embarrassingly short. Continue reading

10 Must-Have Apps for Your New iPad!

Did Santa deliver an iPad? If so, you’ll want to get yourself The iPad Piano Studio book (details below) and your iPad all the top apps! The next couple of Frau mit Geschenk zu Weihnachtenparagraphs are packed with info which may overwhelm. Take a deep breath and remember: take it one app at a time. 

The Piano Mag–blog site of Clavier Companion–asked me to make a list of apps for the holiday season. Sounds easy, right? WRONG! Choosing 10 out of the dozens of favorites was almost impossible.

At the risk of dating myself and revealing my eclectic taste in movies, I’m feeling a little like Steve Martin’s character in “The Jerk.” In case you haven’t seen the movie, Martin plays a “dim-witted” poor man who finds riches and loses it all again. Upon discovering he’s lost everything, he declares, “All I need is this ashtray, this ashtray and this paddle game, this ash tray, this paddle game and this remote control, this ashtray, this…” you get the point. Just in case you want a throwback moment, I’ve included the scene below.

Why am I feeling this way? Because when asked to make a list of top apps for this year, I realized that all the apps included in last year’s list remain in the must-have column.  So consider the new list below an addendum. All I need are last years apps and…

1) Camera (free with purchase of any smart phone or iOS7-camera-icontablet)

It’s easy to forget one of the apps that I use the most—the camera. It is a terrific tool for

-Revelation: a digital mirror for reflecting hand position and technical issues

-Performance Prep: the focus required to perform for the camera simulates the pressure of recital and competition performances

-Magical moments: an easily accessed camera captures those priceless moments of fun during lessons.

Found on most smart phones and tablets

2) Pages (free with any new Apple device)

Recently, I enjoyed the opportunity to share the joys of teaching withPages the iPad on the East Coast. This was the very first trip that I did NOT bring a laptop and only brought my iPad Air in the LogicTech Keyboard case. I never missed my laptop thanks to the keyboard but also credit goes to the powerful Pages app. It creates documents that can be easily exported as PDF’s or Word docs and more. With the magic of iCloud the docs can be accessed on my laptop as well.

iOS only

3) Keynote (free with any new Apple device) Continue reading

A New Favorite Christmas Arrangement for Piano OR Organ!

Merry Christmas pic

Thanks to the wonders of social media, I stumbled across Paul Sweet’s dynamic arrangement of “O Come All Ye Faithful” a couple of months ago. When I heard his captivating performance featured in the video below it struck me that this piece could be a possible hit on the organ as well.

Here’s Paul’s performance of his arrangement on the piano

Here’s my performance of his piece that I arranged for the Allen Renaissance organ

Continue reading

An Edible Ornament that Lasts for a Lifetime?

Turning a candy cane into the shape of a “J” and attaching an Christmas Candy Caneappropriately shaped pipe cleaner can magically transform into a treble clef. No, I wasn’t clever enough to come up this idea! Credit goes to Mrs Dennis and her article posted at Music with Mrs Dennis. If you have not visited this creative and colorful blog, check it out. Music with Mrs. Dennis has oodles of ideas for the music classroom that can prove useful in the piano studio as well.

Mrs Dennis was kind enough to shoot a video of how she made the candy cane treble clefs. My students watched the video to learn how to make these tasty treble clefs in the studio during Music Tech Time.

Unlike Mrs Dennis, who generously crafted them for her students, I made my students make their own as part of a Christmas gift to their parents. After their treble clef ornament was finished, students wrote a holiday sentiment on a tag, and threaded the tag and a silver or gold bell on a colorful string. The string was then tied in a knot which was glued to the bottom portion of the “J.”

What you will need to create the candy cane ornament:

Continue reading

Skitterbug: the best thing since sliced bread!

Pulling out a pre-sliced piece of bread from the plastic bag and popping it in the toaster isdigital-pr a breeze. Finding a knife and a cutting board to cut a piece from a loaf not to mention cleaning up all the crumbs left behind is much less convenient and more time-consuming.

Likewise, sending a link of your glossy studio website to a potential customer is easy. Designing the elegant website with a drop down menu, a photo gallery and an option to pay online can be hard!

I live by this mantra: any activity associated with technology that stumps me for more than 15 minutes–30 minutes at the max–requires outside help. Analogy: if I don’t have a serrated knife to slice properly or a cutting board to protect the kitchen counter, then it’s time to find someone who does. Enter Skitterbug!

Skitterbug-Logo-Quando-Final-copySkitterbug specializes in virtual assistance for performing arts professionals and small arts organizations. In a nutshell, Bryn Sowash–founder of Skitterbug– and her team will help you tackle the large OR the small projects for your studio, your camp, your store–for any type of arts-related business you’d like to promote. As an online presence is essential for any endeavor in today’s market, Skitterbug is THE resource for you and will not only assist but carry you through until the project is completed to your satisfaction.

Here’s my recent experience with Skitterbug:

Since I’m involved in a number of endeavors, I determined I needed to “house” all of them under one site called LeilaViss.com. Although I consider myself quite savvy, I do get stumped. I emailed Continue reading