Melissa T. Music Lessons

News Letter

Saturday, April 6, 2019 by Melissa Chin | Uncategorized

Today marks the end of our first week of the practice competition!

I'd like to congratulate Peyton on having the highest amount of time practiced this week. Keep it up! I am SO proud of the strides you all are making. I can hear the progress in your playing and see it in your confidence.  Also, thank you, parents and caregivers. I know you all play a big part in either reminding them to practice or helping with logging the times in. Just as a reminder, everyone is invited to participate. Adult students, kid students, piano students, vocal students and new students alike.

Remember, there are many ways to practice. You can listen to your assigned song on youtube, play a music-themed game, play older songs you were assigned in the past or reading new material on piano or your favorite genre.

Speaking of new students, we would like to welcome our newest piano student, Taron! *insert round of applause* Welcome to the family.

I look forward to seeing you all this coming week!


More Ways to Practice: Apps and Videos

Tuesday, February 26, 2019 by Melissa Chin | Uncategorized

Hello Students and Parents!

Many of you are just starting to read music on the grand staff and I know it can be tough remembering all those notes. I wanted to take a moment to share some fun apps that you can use to retain and reinforce your music theory throughout the week.

We all love zoning out on our phones and tablets from time to time. Let’s make that time more productive by downloading some of these apps and get to practicing!

  1. Staff Wars
  2. Music Flash Cards
  3. Note Trainer
  4. Note Teacher
  5. Note Racer

Here are some videos on YouTube music teacher approved with varying skill levels:


These are just a few ideas! But the point is to find other ways to incorporate music into your everyday to retain your new knowledge of music. Enjoy!

Your Not-So-Musical Piano Parent: Helping Your Young Musician Practice Piano

Wednesday, October 10, 2018 by Melissa Chin | Uncategorized

I love my piano students! There’s something about a child learning to read and play music that makes my heart beam with pride. The confidence that students develop as they learn to play the piano is amazing. However, on the opposite end of the spectrum, my piano parents are lacking confidence in their ability to help their young musician practice throughout the week.

Many of the parents say things like “I’m not musical…not one bit!” Particularly when students have progressed to more complex music reading, parents feel inadequate in helping their young musicians practice. Once, a mom came to the lesson and said “I didn’t know what he was supposed to do, so I just told him to go like this.”No doubt, it was wrong, but we all had a good laugh and reviewed the correct way to play the song. These scenarios are not unusual. Many parents want to help their young musician practice but the music is often out the scope of their abilities.

But parents, you can breathe easy! I want to share 4 practical ways you can help your young musician, even though you’re not a musician!

1. Establish A Practice Routine

I know parents are busy. You’re not just a piano parent, you’re a soccer mom, football coach, homeschool teacher, carpooler, and work a full-time job. I’m tired just thinking about it. As busy as you are, it is important to establish a routine for practice time. This way it is a part of your daily rhythm and you will experience less resistance to practice from your young musicians. This is also major for progression in their piano playing.

2. Be Involved In the Piano Lesson

Some parents may choose to observe the entire lesson. For my early beginners (ages 2-4), many parents may even participate in the lesson. However, the older students typically get dropped off and picked up. I recommend during the pick-up time, having the young musician play their newest piece and have them explain to you what they are to practice the coming week. This will help you understand the teacher notes, have an idea of what the song should sound like and you will also get an overview of any new concepts.

3. Ask Questions

Asking questions is a good way to get your young musician’s thinking wheels turning. Try some of these questions:

Which part of the song is the hardest for you? Can you play that part?

What does this symbol mean?

Can you show me how to play that part?

What would this song sound like if you just clapped it?

4. Make It Fun

Practicing piano should never be a punishment. If they are not motivated to sit behind the piano don’t force them. Switch it up a little! Go on YouTube and have them watch another young musician play the same song. Have them go on their student portal and do a worksheet from the resource section. Have them choose a song they’d like to learn the following week.

Here are some other ways to make practice fun:

Change the lyrics to the song to something silly.

Surprise a family member by calling or Face Timing them and have your young musician play the song for them.

Play the song in slow motion or fast forward.

These are just four ways you can help your young musician during practice throughout the week. Hopefully these ideas will inspire and empower you to get more involved in practice during the week. Happy practicing!

To sign up for piano lessons with Melissa T. Music Lessons contact me here.