Each student receives a homework journal. This is where I write down assignments, give feedback, and also make notes about scheduling, etc…

Parents remain informed of assignments, etc… to ensure that teacher – parent – and child can all work toward the same goals.

The journals also provide a place for words of encouragement, notes for parents, reminders and sticker charts. Students complete sticker charts to receive (parent approved) awards.

Faber and / or Music Tree series method books are most often used. Intermediate students play easier selections from standard literature such as 25 Études faciles et progressives, Op.100 by Friedrich Burgmüller or J.S Bach’s Notebook for Anna Magdalena. Solo pieces come from any number of current publications, anthologies, etc…

A Note About Reductions

More advanced students will receive outlines of substantial pieces. You see instead of just prescribing “hands alone” or “play more slowly”  students receive exact instructions in the form of a musically notated exercise. These exercises can also be memorized and transposed for further study. Here we have Mozart’s famous Rondo Alla Turca from his Piano Sonata No. 11 The section primarily treated is the famous A Major octave section.

Mozart’s Rondo Alla Turca, Reduced

This reduction (as I call them) focuses special attention on the A Major section of the piece. It also includes an exercise for RH alone which prepares the student for the tricky fingering required in the subsequent section.

It is important to note that since these are my original compositions, they are written for personal use in a private lesson setting. Most teachers can surmise how I might use these exercises and reductions, but with the page alone their interpretation would be incomplete.

Examples of beginning material.

Online Music Theory Flash Cards.

  • Parents can control mouse and ask child note names before revealing answers.
  • Children can also use  the game to quiz themselves.
  • Click on the button “Moreflashcards!” to reshuffle the cards.


  • Designed to increase sight reading confidence for  Red Book students.
  • Print and follow the written instructions before playing.

Songs using the solfège method (6 years and under).

Do Re Mi Cards

London Bridge is Falling Down

Mary Had a Little Lamb

Brother John / Frere Jacques

A custom designed worksheet showing students and teachers how to maximize the five finger patterns in preparation for scales, ETC…


Examples of advanced material (CM Level 6 – Higher).

A custom designed warm up featuring arpeggios running through the circle of fifths, and a descending B Major scale with both hands a fourth apart.

Finale PrintMusic 2009 – [warmup_exercise_1_copyright_jpn_april_2013]

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Phoebe Robinson
    Aug 01, 2017 @ 22:19:13

    Justin are you still teaching in Oakland? We’d love to hear from you sometime! Please let us know! Regards, Phoebe


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