Resource Site for Improv and Composition

Photo courtesy of Dave Hogg on Flickr

Do you have students who perform regularly with a worship band or in a traditional service at their church?  Since many of the skills required for church playing (lead sheets, improv, modulations, etc.) fall outside of the “traditional” piano curriculum, it can be difficult to find curriculum and resources to use with students.  I’m always excited and grateful to find web resources that help fill … Continue reading

New Improv and Harmonization Worksheets

It’s been a super hot week here in Kansas City, so I’ve been hanging out inside in the air conditioning catching up on lesson planning for the upcoming school year!   I’m attempting to get everything ready for fall before I take a few weeks vacation at the beginning of August.  That way everything is ready and waiting for the new year when I get … Continue reading

Composing Sheets

One of my goals for this summer’s lessons is to have my students do more composing.     There was a really interesting article on the ComposeCreate blog last month that inspired me to incorporate more writing into my lessons.   In a nutshell, the author suggested that writing music is great training for reading music – especially for students who struggle with notereading.   … Continue reading

Harmonization Worksheets

As a follow-up to the Connect-A-Chord game I used at my April group classes, I whipped up several short melody harmonization worksheets.    I’m planning to do more composing and improv with students over the summer, and these make a great “warm-up” activity to get us thinking that way again. The Connect-A-Chord game challenged students to think of all the possible triads that could go … Continue reading

Christmas Carol Harmonizations

It’s the last week of the semester!   The downtown holiday program has been performed!   Wonderful Christmas music has been shared in group lessons!  The last recordings for each student’s Christmas CD have been made, colorful covers added, and CDs placed under the Christmas tree ready for pick-up!    We have just one lesson left before a two-week break, just enough time to accomplish….. hmmm, what are … Continue reading