running a music studio

On Surviving September

Ahhhhhh! Where did September go? The students and I are back into the swing of things. The days are long. I typically begin teaching at 3:30 and go till 9 pm. I do have a few day students on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays. I've even managed to stay on top of reshelving the books used each day and getting some regular practicing in. My former teacher would be pleased that I've pulled out some senior repertoire to muck around with (mixed in with some jazz, improvising and JPop of course). With more intermediate and senior students this year, I need to stay on top of things.

Now if only I could get in the swing of things with my paperwork. I'm behind on my bookkeeping (surprise, surprise) and other admin related work.

I am so excited to have such a great bunch of students this year. Actually, I should say "families" since being able to have a good relationship with the family is fundamental to making the year go well. For the most part, the students are doing well with their practice journals, although a few haven't been keeping track as well as I'd like (or practicing as much as their parents and I would like them to). Overall though, the practice journals seem to be working. The kids are using the forms to ask insightful questions, share what they enjoyed most out of their homework and alert me to what they need help with.

Even Maestro is maturing into his role as "canine teaching assistant". He rests quietly in his "room" (his kennel) most of the time and hasn't tried to steal any stickers. Prizes though, are another story. He bonked his head on the prize drawer a couple of times while trying to steal a peek.

A few students have simply blown me away with their compositions. A few were inspired by a tune they heard, while others have come up with something unlike anything I've heard before.

Students, parents and fellow teachers, feel free to share your feelings on your year so far. As for me, I better go practice...

(c) 2006 by Musespeak(tm), Calgary, AB, Canada. All rights reserved.

Enter Troppo Crazy Season

Yes, your eyes aren’t deceiving you – this is truly a late night blog entry. We are now into troppo crazy season. I was speaking with a fellow teacher this past afternoon. We talked about how the pace will be prestissimo from now until June; with the mad rush to nudge (er, push) students to get everything memorized/prepared for festivals, recitals and exams, everyone becoming busy with extracurricular activities, work and/or school. I’ve been a busy bee, trying to get as much done by Thursday so I can actually take some time off during Easter Break (novel concept). The submission deadline for Calgary ARMTA’s newsletter has come and gone, which involved bugging (er, reminding) advertisers that we needed their ad ASAP. The logo design contest is over and I must say I do like our new logo. Check it out at Calgary ARMTA’s website (I just reformatted the fonts on ALL the pages, by the way). My 2006/07 Registration Package has been distributed to most students. My own website got a bit of an overhaul in the Studio Central section. The online Studio Handbook is complete and uploaded to Studio Central. And no list of mine can be complete without bookkeeping. I am nearly done my corrections and will be seeing my accountant later this week. I hope I don’t owe the tax man too much.

Outstanding items? Marking theory, re-arranging Above All for piano duet, arrange a song in lead sheet format for another student, cleaning up, practicing for a wedding gig next week and more administration. I’ll have to start thinking about my summer teaching schedule, but can’t nail that down until a few things are finalized.



My brain is sliding into an ungraceful ritardando. Onto the fun links and then I can call it a night.




Copyright 2006, Musespeak(tm), Calgary, AB, Canada. All rights reserved.