15 The Way to Sustain Summer Income

Do your students want to take the summer off or want fewer lessons, resulting in reduced income for you? It can be frustrating, stressful, and depressing to have to struggle for income in the summer when your students drop off or take breaks. Don’t worry, The Piano Sensei Way has solved this problem! Not only can you maintain your income in the summer months, but I show you how to actually increase it! And you’ll be surprised to know that this is possible even when your students want fewer lessons, and even when you want a vacation, too! We talk about having a flat rate tuition, special projects or events in the summer, and different options for students to add on extras. This episode is taken from a YouTube live Q&A so you’ll hear some questions and comments from the audience. “Summer Camp Guru” Jennifer Foxx actually joined the stream to discuss her ideas and help me answer audience questions!

14 The Way to Make Studio Music Videos (Mikey Ashmore)

I was so impressed when I watched Mikey Ashmore’s students in a studio music video he posted on Facebook this past Halloween. I reached out to him to get him on the show to talk about how he came up with this idea and how he pulled it off! You’ve got to see this video and listen to my interview with him, it’s so fun! He walks us through the steps of writing custom parts for the ensemble, rehearsing, having a piano camp, and then recording and shooting the video. We discuss the benefits which include social interaction, increased student practicing in order to not let down their teammates, more performance confidence, younger students being inspired by older ones, and just plain old fun!

13 The Way to Teach Theory Classes (Glory St. Germain)

Teaching theory is a must . . . and it’s even better in groups! It’s more fun, students get social activity, they gain encouragement and support from their peers, and you can increase your income! Based on the Cooperative Learning Theory, students learn faster in small groups. You can also maximize your effectiveness by teaching several students all at once! Glory St. Germain gives joins us to give us lots of information on how to implement such a program in your studio.

12 The Way to Make Scales Easier (Zac Adamson)

Is there only one way to finger scales? Do C, G, D, A, and E always start with left hand 54321? Zac Adamson says “no!” We discuss alternate scale fingerings and how they can help students (and you!) play with more natural ease and flow. During this episode, he demonstrates specific scales and their alternative fingerings on his piano and I try them out on my piano! Zac has created a diagram for you to use which simplifies things and allows you to see similarities and patterns.

11 BONUS: Clinton interviewed on Ultimate Music Teachers Podcast

This is my recent interview on the Ultimate Music Teachers Productivity and Profitability Podcast with host Glory St. Germain! Topics include: my various roles as a music educator, improvisation, enforcing policies, Dalcroze Eurhythmics, how to make lessons engaging, retention, performance anxiety, and more! 

10 The Way to Be Confident in Your Policies (Tiffani Smith)

Tiffani is back by popular demand! We talk about being confident in your policies in order to protect your business, produce efficiency, and increase satisfaction! We both share examples and stories of how confident policies helped our studios. We disuss many tips on how to be confident including: explaning the protection, efficiency, and satisfaction to clients, practicing in front of a mirrow (yes, really!), role playing, telling clients you’ll get back to them so you have time to think, keeping it brief, and combining confidence with kindness! Tiffani reminds us to make policies that are easy it implement and easy for clients to follow. Be sure to communicate your policies clearly, and be open to refining them as needed.

09 The Way to Teach Beginners with No Book (Tim Topham)

Tim Topham, internationally recognized leader in music education and founder of Top Music, joins the show to talk about his approach to delay method books and reading in order to focus on creativity and musicality first! Tim says, “Why don’t we leave the method books alone for a few weeks and do improvisation, creativity, musicality, and skill training first, before we introduce reading? I’m not against method books at all. They are a brilliant, structured, scaffolded way to teach students to read music. But is that the thing to do in lesson one? And my answer would be a very strong “no!”

08 The Way Creativity Cultivates Connection (Christopher Oill)

Christopher Oill joins the show to talk about creativity, composition, connecting to students, and how to balance structure with freedom. Chris is such a fun person to talk to because he’s smart, innovative, personable, and funny! Even if there’s no set topic of discussion, he is always engaging and I guarantee he will inspire you to think outside the box and make you laugh!

07 The Way Flat Rate Tuition Minimizes Stress

Rescheduled lessons, cancellations, and students who want to take the summer off, oh my! Don’t you want to reduce your stress so you can focus on teaching? Having a flat rate tuition with no makeups lessons makes everything easier on students, parents, and you, the teacher! In this episode, I walk you through the details on how to do institute a flat rate tuition and why you will want to convert, if you haven’t already!

06 The Way to Teach Piano is to Teach Practicing (Michael Richey)

Do your students practice? Do they know how to practice? Are you sure they’re doing it effectively and efficiently? In this episode I talk with Michael Richey of the Tennessee Music Academy about how the main goal of a piano lesson is to teach a student how to practice! We talk about introducing a piece, beginners, transfer students, motivation, student readiness, and he gives us 5 tips . . .