When my kids started showing interest in playing the piano, I started to ask my friends about piano teachers. One of them told me about the Suzuki method. It sounded wonderful, but was costly and required a lot of driving.
Then, I found out about a piano teacher, Angie Morlan, in my neighborhood. My kids could walk there, she didn’t charge us if our kids got sick and couldn’t come at the last minute, and she also asked us to be flexible if something came up for her. She said that the latter rarely happened (this proved to be true).
I thought, “Great! I really like that I can send my kids over or incorporate my daily walk as I take them to lessons.”
One day, my trumpet playing son, Caleb, was struggling with a song. He wasn’t her piano student. Even though Angie doesn’t play trumpet, she was more than willing to help him figure out the rhythm. This helped him immensely.
2 years’ time passed since Jared started lessons with her. Isaac saw Jared enjoying the piano and decided to play also.
A year later, my kids discovered that we had more music around the house than their piano lesson books. They started teaching themselves how to play the music found in The Friend magazine.
When I told their teacher about this new phenomenon, she asked them to bring whatever the kids wanted to play. She said she didn’t worry about sticking to the book, doing each lesson in order, etc. What mattered to her the most: inspire the kids.
Angie is open to the kids bringing music of any level that interested them. They usually choose music above their level because they enjoy the challenge.
Now, I knew I had a treasure in my kids’ piano teacher. They practice even more (of their own choice) because it’s FUN! They’re INSPIRED! They LOVE it!
I never have to ask my kids to practice piano, they just do it. They love memorizing their songs.
What are your experiences with piano lessons and teachers? Do you have any hints, tips, or other suggestions on what to look for in piano lessons and/or teachers? I’d love to read your comments about Angie, too, if you know her.