Helpful tips and funny thoughts from a musician's mind

Tag: music studio

Torn about summer lessons? Here are some of the benefits!

Torn about summer lessons? Here are some of the benefits!

It’s almost summertime — and summer means more time for growing, learning, playing, and exploring your community. Here are five great reasons to make music lessons part of your summer plans in 2019:   1. MUSIC IS FUN! Learning an instrument can be an awesome experience — […]

How to be Recital Ready

How to be Recital Ready

Recital season is upon us! Here are a few ways to make sure that you’re ready to go when the big day rolls around.   1. PICK A SONG YOU ENJOY. If you’re going to play for your family and friends (or even strangers), pick something […]

When is my child ready for private music lessons?

When is my child ready for private music lessons?

Every now and then, we’re asked how early a child can begin private music lessons. Is there one right answer?

 

Not exactly. As we all know, people are unique. We all learn at different paces, adjust to new situations differently, and have our own sets of strengths and weaknesses. That means that a student’s “timeline” of musical readiness will always be unique. A focused four-year-old will be ready for piano lessons long before a disinterested ten-year-old!

 

No matter what the age, here are a few ways you can tell if your child is ready to start private music lessons:

 

1. HE OR SHE HAS EXPRESSED INTEREST — WITHOUT YOUR PROMPTING. In my experience, the most dedicated students have always been children who expressed personal interest in an instrument without a parent prompting them. There are certainly times for Mom and Dad to make executive decisions…and I have seen many students “forced” into music who learn to love it…but if the child does not have a personal stake in lessons, that interest often dies within a few years.

If your five-year-old is obsessed with the violin and asks you about it frequently, that’s probably a sign that she’s interested and will work at her craft. Give it a shot!

 

2. HE OR SHE HAS LEARNED HOW TO SIT STILL. Everyone gets a bit wiggly now and then, but an uncontrollably wiggly student is hard to teach! Has your child learned how to sit and listen in another setting, like preschool or kindergarten? Do they know how to listen and take advice? If so, they might be ready for lessons.

 

3. HE OR SHE IS DILIGENT AT HOME. Most of a musician’s growth happens outside the studio! Your child needs to practice when lessons aren’t in session. If your child is diligent with his or her other duties, like chores or homework, they will probably do well juggling music assignments as well.

 

4. HE OR SHE ASKS GREAT QUESTIONS. The best students are inquisitive students — and music is a GREAT outlet for curiosity! If your child loves to understand how things work, music lessons are a great way to explore questions tactically.

 

5. HE OR SHE LIKES TO HAVE FUN. Maybe this is a no-brainer…but ALL of us work harder when we enjoy whatever we’re doing! If your child seems to truly enjoy music in other contexts, it’s probably safe to assume they will enjoy music lessons…and by extension, will have the patience to stick with them.

For the Love of Music

For the Love of Music

Valentine’s Day might be over, but love is always a timely subject! In the spirit of keeping love alive this month, here are a few of our favorite things about Learning Allegro’s dearest art form, music.   1. MUSIC SPEAKS TO US. No matter how scientific we […]

Here are four instruments your child can start early

Here are four instruments your child can start early

In most Pennsylvania public schools, orchestra electives begin in third grade. That means that the average student doesn’t formally pick up an instrument until age eight. Is it possible to start learning an instrument younger than that?   Yes! In fact, at Learning Allegro, we’ve […]

My Learning Allegro Story: Miss Haleigh

My Learning Allegro Story: Miss Haleigh

Miss Haleigh shares her Learning Allegro journey with us in this last blog post of 2018.


The last week of December is an interesting paradox. Within the span of a week, we go from celebrating the past to cheering on the future. Christmas is all about remembering things — the birth of Jesus, the traditions our parents put in place — and catching a whiff of childhood again. New Year’s Eve asks us to put those memories aside for a moment to celebrate the unknown.

 

Anyway, since today is the last day of December, it seems fitting for me to look backward and forward a little myself.

 

Let’s start with backward.

 

I came to Learning Allegro as a high school student in 2009. At the time, I had no intention of doing anything with violin after high school, and I was “burned out” on the whole lesson scene. According to my mom, I copped some serious attitude in that first lesson. It’s a good thing the teacher was patient.

 

Within three years, much changed. I found my love for music again. I became a more confident musician, a more confident person. That “patient teacher” from 2009 became my boss. Wendy encouraged me to step out of my comfort zone and try my hand at teaching in 2012 — and with her help, I found a career that I loved.

 

From 2012 until today, I taught a small army of students — some much younger than me, some much older — and found that teachers and students really do grow together. I learned to see the basic elements of music with fresh eyes again. Best of all, I spent my evenings and weekends with a fantastic collection of parents, teachers and colleagues who genuinely cared for each other. The people at Learning Allegro truly celebrate each other’s achievements.

 

My job not only “filled my tank” every week emotionally, but put me through school financially. I graduated from Penn State debt free in 2016 — and I paid for my school while doing something I loved with people that I loved.

Now to look forward.

 

Today was my last day teaching at Learning Allegro. I’m heading into a new future, one that is daunting in the best way possible — and as I look, I am so grateful for the time I had at Learning Allegro. My 2009 self had no idea that her first day in this place would lead to a job, incredible friends, and a second home — and I’m glad she couldn’t see that far ahead. The best things in life are twice as sweet when they are surprises.

 

To whoever reads this blog — current students, potential students, parents, colleagues — I hope that you make some space for music and discovery in 2019. I hope “my students” will go twice as far with their new Allegro teachers as they did with me. And I hope the studio continues to impact people like it impacted me. Plenty of changes are ahead in 2019, but no matter what, I know for a fact that Learning Allegro will continue giving great lessons and impacting lives.

Thanks to the teachers, parents and students who made Learning Allegro so memorable. Have a blessed and happy new year!

 

 

Music is for the whole community!

Music is for the whole community!

At Learning Allegro, we never pass up an opportunity to take great music into the Greater Chester County area — or even beyond! Just this year, students and teachers from Learning Allegro have… Volunteered at the West Vincent Elementary Talent Show  Partnered with local school […]