How to Practice Anything (especially the piano)

This blog post by a fellow piano teacher is wonderful, I can say that her advice here is invaluable. (Beta-tested it this summer.) 😉

This is wonderful reading for not only parents, but for older students, too. And piano teachers!

Here is the link. You can also download it here as a PDF to print it out to read it again and again.

How to Practice Anything
by Regina Ngo

How to Practice Anything

Regina Ngo
Regina’s Music Studio, S. Pasadena, CA
Website: http://rmslearning.me

The Story of Kauro: One of Our Elephant Orphans

The Practice for the Elephants Contest has ended and my piano students have done a great job, practicing during the month of May, with lots of minutes of practicing to raise money to continue to foster our 10 elephant orphans—orphaned because of illegal poaching for their parents’ ivory tusks.

We still need two more matching donors for two of the students:
Keep reading to find out how you can become a matching donor!
Please see below to find out about our charity.

About the contest:

Students earn two cents for every minute practiced over the course of 4 weeks. At the end, we total up the minutes to figure out how much each student has raised. Students’ sponsors can be parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, close friends of the family.

Students also have matching donors: paired with one of my students, you’ll match what that student earned practicing, most kids earn between $10–20.

So far we have matching donors for all but 2 students. Can you match what they earn? The kids are so excited that their contribution will be doubled! Our goal is to raise enough to continue to foster our 10 baby elephants. (It’s $50 a year per elephant baby.)

If you’d like to be a matching donor for a great cause, please contact me and I will pair you up with a student! 

Meet One of Our Elephants

The story of one of our baby elephants, Kauro.

Why Pianos and Elephants?

As pianists we are very aware of the history of using ivory for piano keys and that the manufacture of pianos once contributed to the trade in ivory. But today, piano technicians use polymers and mixtures of plastics to create the look and feel of ivory for our piano keys, bypassing entirely the illegal trade in ivory elephant tusks.

Where Our Donations Go

The donations collected go to sponsor abandoned baby elephant cubs whose mother or father was killed from illegal poaching of ivory in Africa. The orphaned baby elephants are raised and kept safe for later release by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Foundation in Nairobi, Kenya where it operates the Tsavo East National Park.

Click here for more details on the contest and on the Foundation.
Please also visit the The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust website.
You can also follow the Trust on Facebook.
Here’s another website, iworry.org, where you can take action toward ending the ivory trade.

This wonderful and amazing contest was created by fellow piano instructor, Penny Lazarus.

Piano Practice for the Elephants Contest: Become a Matching Donor Today!

The Practice for the Elephants Contest is under way at the Cape Ann Piano Studio!
My piano students are practicing piano to raise money to continue to foster our baby elephants, who have been orphaned because of illegal poaching.

Keep reading to find out how you can become a matching donor!

Our Elephants!

Our Elephants!

About the contest:

Students earn two cents for every minute practiced over the course of 4 weeks. At the end, we total up the minutes to figure out how much each student has raised. Students’ sponsors can be parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, close friends of the family.

But new this year, students have matching donors: each matching donor is paired with a particular student and will match what that student earns.

Each student generally earns between $8–$15 for practicing. Can you match what they earn? I have 14 young students participating in the contest, and they all need matching donors. The kids are so excited that their contribution will be doubled! Our goal is to raise enough to continue to foster our 10 baby elephants. (It’s $50 a year per orphaned elephant.)

If you’d like to be a matching donor for a great cause, please contact me and I will pair you up with a student! 

Cape Ann Piano Studio Spring Recital, June, 2015

Cape Ann Piano Studio Spring Recital, June, 2015

Why Pianos and Elephants?

As pianists we are very aware of the history of using ivory for piano keys and that the manufacture of pianos once contributed to the trade in ivory. But today, piano technicians use polymers and mixtures of plastics to create the look and feel of ivory for our piano keys, bypassing entirely the illegal trade in ivory elephant tusks.

Where Our Donations Go

The donations collected go to sponsor abandoned baby elephant cubs whose mother or father was killed from illegal poaching of ivory in Africa. The orphaned baby elephants are raised and kept safe for later release by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Foundation in Nairobi, Kenya where it operates the Tsavo East National Park.

Click here for more details on the contest and on the Foundation.
Please also visit the The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust website.
You can also follow the Trust on FB: https://www.facebook.com/thedswt
Here’s another website, iworry.org, where you can take action toward ending the ivory trade.

Meet One of Our Elephants

Rorogoi (girl)

Here’s Rorogoi (girl).

 

This wonderful and amazing contest was created by fellow piano instructor, Penny Lazarus.

Piano Parents: “15 Things You Need to Know…

…About Supporting Your Child Learning to Play the Piano”

Here’s a wonderful blog post by Elissa Milne, a fellow piano teacher whom I “met” in one of my online pro piano instructors’ groups—she’s quite a teacher, and lives in New Zealand! So cool to now have input from teachers from around the world. 🙂
She has a lot of other informative posts for parents, too, on her blog.

https://elissamilne.wordpress.com/2014/09/10/15-things-you-need-to-know-about-supporting-your-child-learning-to-play-the-piano/

Piano Practice for the Elephants Contest: Become a Matching Donor Today!

The Practice for the Elephants Contest is in the final stretch as my piano students begin Week 4 of practicing piano to raise money to foster baby elephants, who have been orphaned due to the illegal poaching of elephants for their ivory tusks.
Keep reading to find out how you can become a matching donor!

elephantsign

Last year’s sign the kids made at the recital.

 

About the contest:

Students earn two cents for every minute practiced over the course of 4 weeks. At the end, we total up the minutes to figure out how much each student has raised. Students’ sponsors can be parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, close friends of the family.

But new this year, students have matching donors: one (or more) paired with a student, who will match what each student earns.

So far we have matching donors for all students—we need 3 more then every student will have one! Each student generally earns between $10-$20 for practicing. Can you match what they earn? The kids are so excited that their contribution will be doubled! Our goal is to raise enough to continue to foster our 6 baby elephants, and, if there are extra funds we will foster another baby elephant. (It’s $50 a year per orphaned elephant.)

If you’d like to be a matching donor for a great cause, please contact me and I will pair you up with a student! 

Last year's recital!

Last year’s recital!

Why Pianos and Elephants?

As pianists we are very aware of the history of using ivory for piano keys and that the manufacture of pianos once contributed to the trade in ivory. But today, piano technicians use polymers and mixtures of plastics to create the look and feel of ivory for our piano keys, bypassing entirely the illegal trade in ivory elephant tusks

Where Our Donations Go

The donations collected go to sponsor abandoned baby elephant cubs whose mother or father was killed from illegal poaching of ivory in Africa. The orphaned baby elephants are raised and kept safe for later release by the David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust Foundation in Nairobi, Kenya where it operates the Tsavo East National Park.

Click here for more details on the contest and on the Foundation.
Please also visit the The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust website.
Here’s another website, iworry.org, where you can take action toward ending the ivory trade.

Our Elephants

Barsilinga (boy)

Barsilinga (boy)

Jasiri (boy)

Lima Lima (girl)

Lima Lima (girl)

Rorogoi (girl)

Rorogoi (girl)

 

Chemi Chemi (boy)

Chemi Chemi (boy)

Sonje (girl, left)

Sonje (girl, left)

This wonderful and amazing contest was created by fellow piano instructor, Penny Lazarus.

Everything you ever wanted to know about metronomes but were afraid to ask…

What! A post about metronomes? Ho Hum.
I gotta be honest, I’m not crazy about iPhone/iPad metronome apps only for ONE reason, they’re not loud enough unless you’re running them through speakers. That said, an 11-year-old student introduced me to a great metronome app she uses (when I make her!) on her iPad, best one I’ve seen:

Pro Metronome:

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And here’s a list of non-app, some perhaps are somewhat “antiquated” metronomes.

The Korg MA-30, the one I have in my studio. Still cool to kids cos it runs on batteries and has buttons to push.

MA30_1

The bad boy Franz (yes, you plug it in), mine lasted for years (I went through two of them I think) … in fact … sentimental packrat that I am, I still have the second one. It finally died, and I don’t have time to run around finding a clockmaker to fix and calibrate it.

 

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The Wittner mini, had one of these in college, another great metronome, of the wind-up variety:

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Call me old-fashioned but I still love these the best, the Seth Thomas wooden metronome, a throwback to the early 1800s (yup, patented by Johann Maelzel in 1815 (Hence, “M.M.” stands for “Maelzel Metronome” so when I write “m.m.” on your music you’ll know where the heck it comes from.) According to Wiki, Beethoven first used m.m. markings in his scores in 1817.

It’s nice and loud, the one I grew up with as a kid (actually, I think we had two, I broke the first one when I threw it across the room in frustration).

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Feel free to share your thrilling metronome memories here too! 🙂

(Seriously, always want info, esp. on apps, or other “physical” metronomes.)

 

PBS Airs Episode of “Wild Affair” Featuring Founder of Our Elephant Rescue Organization!

Not to be missed!

Wild Affair: The Elephant Who Found a Mom airs tomorrow night, Wednesday, July 16, on PBS, at 8 pm.

Wild Affair is a new series about the bonds between humans and their animal companions, and the premiere episode is about Daphne Sheldrick, the founder of The David Sheldrick Wildlife Trust, with whom we help foster orphaned elephants because of illegal poaching. I can’t wait to watch it! 🙂

About The Elephant Who Found a Mom

The story of Aisha, the baby elephant orphan, and Daphne Sheldrick, the woman who became her human foster parent. Their intense bond reaches a crisis point when Daphne leaves Aisha with a babysitter for a few days to attend her daughter’s wedding. Aisha believes she has lost Daphne for good and refuses to eat, leading to her death. Heartbroken, Daphne uses the lessons learned from Aisha’s short life to help her save more than 150 orphans over the next 40 years.

Here’s the link to the PBS info online:

http://www.pbs.org/program/my-wild-affair/

body_my-wild-affair_1.jpg__640x360_q85

Daphne Sheldrick and Aisha.