In part four of the exam focus series, I’m talking with Abe Cytrynowski about technical work & general knowledge.
Abe is passionate about scales. Yes, you read that correctly! Often, scales can make both student and teacher eyes glaze over. Scales are done on autopilot, the muscle memory takes over and students are barely aware of what they’re playing.
In order to break out of this scale rut, we need to do something other than ask our students to play their G major scale again. Abe asks his students to play scales in so many different ways, that they have no choice but to engage with their technical work.
Take a listen to today’s podcast and revitalise your teaching of general knowledge and technical work.
Grab the free download above for reference!
Here are just a few of the ideas:
The exam board ABRSM have created a range of useful digital learning tools which help make music practice more engaging.
Whether you’re looking to slow down recordings on your tablet, encourage your students to practice for aural tests more effectively, or help them learn to write melodies, ABRSM have a collection of mobile and web apps which you’re sure to find useful for you and your students.
Check them out today – you can find more information about all of them at www.abrsm.org/apps
There are a lot of podcasts you could be tuning into today, and I’m grateful that you’ve chosen mine.
Being a full-time teacher myself, I know how busy teachers are and how much time, effort and passion we put into our students. Sometimes, the last thing we want to do in our time off is listen to more piano teaching stuff! So, well done for using this time for self-improvement.
Whether you’re at the gym, on the bike or in the car, I know that you and your students will get lots out of what you learn in the long run. Just make sure you try out some of the ideas before they get lost in the business of your next lessons.
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Do you manage to include these aspects of music in every lesson? Or do they get crammed just before an exam? Did any of Abe’s ideas inspire you to try something new?
Tim Topham is the founder and director of TopMusic. Tim hosts the popular TopCast show, blogs regularly at topmusic.co and speaks at local and international conferences on topics such as pedagogy, business, marketing and entrepreneurship. Tim has been featured in American Music Teacher, The Piano Teacher Magazine, California Music Teacher and EPTA Piano Professional. Tim holds an MBA in Educational Leadership, BMus, DipEd and AMusA.