FAQ

Do you offer online piano lessons and classes?  Yes!  Online lessons are held via Rock Out Loud Live, which was designed specifically for virtual music lessons.  Students learn and progress just as if we were having lessons together in my Bay Area studio, except with the freedom to learn from anywhere! I also offer a 100% virtual option for those students who need even more flexibility and convenience.  All you need is an iPad or a laptop computer with an Internet connection. Many of my students who started off with lessons in-person are LOVING the convenience of virtual lessons and are planning to remain online now that they know my online lessons are just as effective and fun as they were in person!

How do you teach piano online?  Really, just like I do in person! The first priority is maximizing sound quality and reducing sound latency, so I hold online lessons over Rock Out Loud Live (which is designed specifically for music lessons), providing students with a far superior music lesson experience than Zoom or other conferencing platforms.  The second priority is providing students with excellent views of my hands, so students can clearly see what’s being taught.  I utilize three cameras: one of me for when I’m talking with students, a second overhead to zoom in on my hands when demonstrating concepts on the keyboard, and a third with a full view of the keyboard when I wish to demonstrate a piece.  Combining exceptional sound quality with multiple camera angles provides students with an amazing live lesson experience – from the comfort of your own home!

Do you offer in-person piano lessons and classes?  At this time, no, but I expect to be offering lessons outside in a comfortable backyard studio in the fresh air soon!  Expect my in-person lessons to be in a hybrid format, fluidly combining both in-person and online lessons and events.

What’s included with monthly tuition?  So much!  In addition to regular weekly lessons or classes, students receive access to my studio’s online social community, where students can ask questions, communicate with me and other students between lessons, participate in studio challenges, and share music with each other. Students are also invited (though not required) to participate in quarterly performance opportunities (piano parties, open mic nights, recitals), held either in-person or online.

Do I need to have a piano or keyboard?  Yes, the student does need to have a piano or keyboard to use at home to practice what was learned during the lesson each week.  At a minimum, the home keyboard should have 61 keys (though 76 or 88 keys are significantly better), weighted keys, and a sustain pedal.  I suggest looking for a keyboard made by Yamaha or Casio (check out the Privia line – the S1000 is amazing for the price!).  You may be able to find a great price on a starter keyboard or  by purchasing a used one through Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist – just be sure to test the instrument out before taking it home to ensure all the keys and features work!

Are your piano classes good for teens?  Yes, my approach to teaching piano is excellent for teens!  Teens want to play great-sounding music… right now! The Simply Music method has students playing two-hands together from the very first lesson. Is your teen’s interest primarily to learn to play pop music? Blues? Movie themes? Or is their dream to compose their own music? We can focus more on what they’re interested in. For more information about lessons for teens, click HERE.

Do you take adult students? Yes! The Simply Music Piano method is just as wonderful for adults of all ages as it is for children and teens! My adult students love learning piano this way, and many have wished the method had existed when they were children. For more information about my lessons for adults, head HERE.

Can I learn Simply Music Piano with my child?  Yes! I’ve had quite a few parent/child shared lessons over the years, and they’re super fun!

Homeschooling Families:  While I’m no longer a vendor with local charter schools, I am a homeschooling mom, and I love working with homeschooling families. 🙂

When are classes offered? Classes are primarily held afternoons, Sunday through Wednesday, 3:00-6:00.  Additional times may be available for adults and homeschool students who have the flexibility to take lessons during regular school hours.  If set lesson times don’t work for you, ask me about my new flexible virtual piano coaching!

Do you offer in-home lessons?  While I don’t travel to student homes to teach piano lessons, I do offer lessons online, so you can easily learn piano in the comfort of your own home. All you need is an iPad or a laptop computer and an internet connection!

Do you hold recitals? Students are given the opportunity to perform throughout the year during studio piano parties, concerts (in-person or online), and video performances. While participation in these events is encouraged, it is not required. I know not all students want to perform in front of a crowd, and I’m OK with that!

Do you prepare students for piano exams?  The focus in this studio is on creating music and developing well-rounded musicians who love to play, not passing exams.  If exam prep is what you are looking for, you can find many other teachers in our area who can help you out.

Do you accept transfer students?  Absolutely! The Simply Music Piano method is excellent for students who have been learning piano the traditional way (recently or long ago), but now are looking for something different. My program is perfect for those tweens and teens who want to keep learning piano but have become bored with the books and music taught in traditional lessons. To learn more about my program, head HERE.

Are students taught how to read music?  Yes! When the student is showing signs that they are ready to begin the reading process, we jump right in. Since students have such a solid musical foundation before reading is introduced, and reading is only introduced when the student is developmentally and musically ready, most students learn to read at an accelerated rate. When will this happen? It depends! Some are ready after three months of lessons, while others may not be ready for three years. I’ve found reading readiness is often dependent upon the student’s commitment to home practice. As with all music learning, there is a strong correlation between the quality and quantity of home practice between lessons and the speed a student proceeds through the program and moves towards readiness to read music.

Why hold off on reading music? Reading notes from a page is only a small component of overall musicality and the ability to play the piano. Just as we talk and communicate verbally for many years before we learn to read words and books, we should allow ourselves plenty of time to “speak” and become fluent in the language of music before diving into reading notes and musical scores. Can you imagine only being able to talk while reading from a book? Or teaching a child to talk by first having them master nouns, verbs, adjectives, pronouns, conjunctions, prepositional phrases, etc., as well as periods and exclamation points…. all before they are allowed to have a conversation? No – that would be crazy! And, unfortunately, that’s how piano has traditionally been taught.  The truth is that we learn to talk by talking. Natural music acquisition works the same way. The most natural way to learn to make music is to play music.

My child isn’t interested in learning to read music. Are you willing to teach them to play piano without forcing this issue?  Yes, I’m open to teaching students who have no desire to learn to read music. There are so many other aspects of musical development that we can focus on instead. And, who knows…. maybe one day they’ll change their mind. I’m flexible. Just know that part of being a well-rounded musician is to eventually learn how to read music from the page, and understand that your child will be missing out on the huge volume of music out there that is best learned from a musical score. If this is the path you wish to pursue, just let me know, and we’ll focus lesson time on other ways to make music.

How do I enroll or get onto your waiting list?  Here’s the link to the registration form… REGISTER .

Still have a question?  Let me know!