Expectations

908, 2017

Learning Requires Taking Risks

By |August 9, 2017|Encouragement, Expectations, Motivation, Teaching, Teaching Philosophy|

Below is the third key element of my teaching philosophy.

3. I aim to combine high expectations with a friendly, encouraging atmosphere in order to motivate students to ask questions and take risks.

Did you ever notice that some of the most effective learning happens when we fail? This is why it is so incredibly important for a teacher to create an atmosphere where this can happen.

Teachers need to expect high quality work. Tolerating sloppiness invalidates any attempts to motivate students to pursue excellence.

However, if students always perform virtually perfectly, they likely aren’t learning much. Part of high expectations is stretching students […]

903, 2015

How to Pick Good Music Schools

By |March 9, 2015|Expectations, Melody's Story, Music School|

It’s easy to find a list of good music schools. According to FindTheBest.com, the top ten are

But what makes a music school a top school? Are the “best” music schools in the United States necessarily good music schools for you?
How Rankings Are Done
FindTheBest.com’s rankings are “calculated by looking at representation of alumni in ten major orchestras, 2013 Grammy Awards recipients, and 2013 Monterey Jazz Festival participants.” Though this can be helpful if these are your goals, it does not consider many other aspects of what makes a good music program.

Other college ranking services calculate music school rankings using other […]

1502, 2015

Finding Motivation to Practice

By |February 15, 2015|Expectations, Motivation, Music School, Practicing, Preparing to Perform, Work Ethic|

Are you having one of those days? Are you looking for every possible reason why you don’t actually have to practice today. I can relate. Sometimes the biggest challenge is just finding the motivation to practice. So what do we do when we don’t feel like practicing?

1) Just start

If you just start practicing, you’ll often notice that you want to finish what you’ve begun. Once you’ve started, it’s much easier to keep practicing longer.

2) Plan to do it first thing in the morning

Having a specific plan for when you practice will help. Often doing it first thing in the morning […]

401, 2015

5 Characteristics of Good Private Music Teachers

By |January 4, 2015|Expectations, Practicing, Teaching|

This post is intended to serve as a helpful guide for parents and students looking for teachers, but I also hope it helps inspire teachers to continue pursuing growth in these areas. These are some of the goals I’m working toward in my own teaching.

Good private music teachers . . .

1) Have Teaching Experience

No matter how amazing people are as performers, if they can’t teach, then students won’t be able to benefit from their skill. If you’re seeking lessons for a young child, do they work well with kids? The amount of teaching experience of even an excellent musician can […]

2311, 2014

Expectations and Why They’re Such a Big Deal

By |November 23, 2014|Expectations, Practicing, Teaching, Work Ethic|

It’s amazing how expectations affect us! If I expect someone to invite me to something, I’m deeply hurt when he or she doesn’t. If I don’t, I’m elated to receive an invitation. If I expect something of myself, I’m frustrated when I can’t fulfill it. If people I care about expect things of me, I’m inspired to please them. Expectations are powerful! We should consider how to use them as tools in our music studies.

Using Expectations as a Student

As a student, setting expectations for ourselves is extremely beneficial. How long and how often do you expect yourself to practice? This […]

911, 2014

Work Ethic: The Impact of Another Culture on My Music Education

By |November 9, 2014|Expectations, Melody's Story, Practicing, Work Ethic|

My mom grew up in a charismatic Christian family in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She moved to the United States to marry my dad, who grew up in a Mennonite family in Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania. This interesting combination created a unique family culture. I grew up in Ithaca, New York. I was affected by the American culture around me, my mom’s Argentinian culture, and most of all our faith in Jesus. My mom and dad, but my mom especially, instilled in their kids the priority of work, teaching diligence and responsibility. I am so thankful!

When I started piano lessons, my teacher told […]

2608, 2014

What I’ve Learned From Being Surrounded By the Best

By |August 26, 2014|Expectations, Melody's Story, Music School|

I applied to three music schools. Ithaca College was the hardest to get in to—one of the reasons I chose to attend. I feel like I don’t quite fit in there because I’m surrounded by such outstanding musicians every day. Sometimes I wonder why I’m in music school since I’m so terrible, but I have to remind myself that I’m surrounded by the best. It’s amazing how strange I feel when someone from outside the music school, even someone I would consider a good musician, comments on my skill as a pianist. Really? Oh yeah, I guess around most “normal” […]