If you have a group of students who are in Musikgarten’s  Keyboard curriculum – you must be wondering, what next?

Should you keep them in a group? Would private lessons be more beneficial?  What should you teach?  What are they ready for?

I would have liked to have kept them all in a group, however, I had 8 children that had basically been together for 3 to 5 years.  In addition, they went to the same school, same church and lived basically in the same town.  So the group dynamics were an extension of all these other activities they attended together.  I found myself spending a lot of time getting them to pay attention in class.

Since I knew them quite well and understood what their musical capabilities were, I decided to separate them and teach them privately.  They were not too happy about it, but now that we are half-way into the semester I believe they are really enjoying the individual attention (plus I promised them a group lesson…kinda like a reunion)!

Here is a list of what we are working on:

Preparing for Guild – Founder’s Medal

  • Irl Allison Piano Library (Elementary A – Program 1) – I chose 2 pieces from this book for each student in order to qualify for this award. It has been challenging  – but at the same time quite easy since they know how to listen so well!  I also recorded the pieces for them and posted them on my youtube channel, so they could have an auditory reference.  These pieces are difficult to read and prepare in a short period of time, so listening everyday is a must!

Shifting Five-Finger Positions

  • Travelin’ Fingers – Book Two – Margaret Goldston – I did not choose book 1 because I thought the pieces were not as challenging or as much fun to play as the ones in Book Two.  I assigned each student a different piece to begin with so that when recital comes around they are not all playing the same piece!  They have really enjoyed their selection and I am combining rote teaching with note reading for these pieces.  I cannot record these since they are copyrighted so we design a practice plan for the different sections of the piece and add on to it the following week.

Songs they know

  • The Easy Worship Fake Book – All songs are in the key of C Major (100 songs!) and they are songs the kids sing at school, church and home.  They must read the melody and then I teach them how to read the chords, how to play them in different ways, styles, etc.  This book has been a hit! If your students are not interested in worship songs, there are many other types of fake books on the market.

On my list that I use once in a while:

I would love to hear what you are using or plan to use.  Just leave a comment and share.