2017 in Review: Our Top 10 Blog Posts - Creative Music Education

2017 in Review: Our Top 10 Blog Posts

By Sean Wales | Creativity

Jan 22

Our Most Read Articles

During 2017, we published a lot of posts on the blog – you would be forgiven for missing a few.

So, we have made things easy with today’s blog article. We have put together the posts that our community read the most. These are blog posts that were published in 2017 (or were updated) and had the most page views.

To save you time looking through all of our resources (which, of course, by all means continue doing!) why not check out some of our best and most loved blog posts for the year?

1. 20 Creative Ways to Start a Piano Lesson

Our top-rated blog post of 2017 was this beauty that gave you a whole bunch of fantastic, creative ways to get your piano lesson off to the best possible start.

Need a quick-hit of creative inspiration? Well, make sure you keep this one bookmarked for when your students come to a lesson unprepared.

The creative part of a piano lesson will have the most meaning for your students in the long-run. Keep them engaged and interested.

This list is must-have and keep it by your piano. There are plenty of ideas, so if your student doesn’t enjoy an activity, don’t worry, you have others to try from.

Click here and start your lessons off creatively.

2. Top 10 Pop Songs for Piano Students

Okay, so this one wasn’t written in 2017, but it was updated, and I think that counts.

Also, considering that this post has been one of our most read articles of all time, I think it’s place in this list is justified.

When it comes to teaching piano in the modern age, pop music must be included in the conversation.

Not only is it most likely to be the music your students are listening to, but it can help you teach a variety of musical concepts in a relatable fashion.

From chords to key signatures to time signatures, you can make pop music relevant to plenty of concepts.

Your students should be playing plenty of different types of music, to give them a holistic education they will love.

Read Tim’s top 10 pop songs and download his free booklet today.

3. The Ultimate Guide to Left Hand Piano Styles & Patterns

What is it with the left hand? Why do students have so much more trouble with it?

Well, let’s buckle that trend, and not your students’ left hands, and find ways to help them feel just as confident with their left hand as they do their right.

Tim created a free download of his favourite left-hand piano styles and patterns to help your students build strength in their left hands.

If you think your students could benefit from that document, then this is a must-read for you.

Download Tim’s free left-hand patterns handout by clicking here. 

4. An Open Letter to Parents of Piano Students

It’s all good and well for teachers to adopt these creative concepts, but sometimes it can be hard to explain to your piano parents why their children are not always doing exams.

Some parents might feel as if their child’s education needs to be assessed with exams.

As a creative piano teacher, you will know that students can develop and improve just as much without the rigid structure of a syllabus and exam.

If you’re having trouble explaining that to your piano parents, then you need to download this document right now.

Tim penned a heartfelt open letter, discussing the importance of a creative approach to a music education.

Print it out, stick it on your studio wall or send it out to your piano parents, or perhaps it will help you put into words what you have been wanting to.

View Tim’s open letter and download his copy for free.

5. The Power of 4 Chord Composing [Online Piano Teaching Course]

Ah, the power of four chords! It’s amazing isn’t it- the number of things you can do with four chords. How many pop songs are written with just four chords?

It wasn’t a surprise to see so many teachers relate to this blog post.

Composing with four chords could be the change your students need to stick with piano.

Get your students writing their own music. Through chords and composition, you can discuss concepts, technique, theory and more.

Read Tim’s article on four chord composing here and find out how you can access the full course.

6. How to Teach Beginner Piano Students [No Book Beginners]

Another Inner Circle course to be released this year was No Book Beginners.

As the title suggests, it focuses on how to teach your beginner students without a single method book for 10 weeks.

Just using one method book can be a detriment to your student’s growth in their opening stages of learning piano.

Make things fun and enjoyable right from the beginning and get them playing with both hands quickly.

If that sounds like something you might be interested in, check out the post and make sure you download the first three lessons in the No Book Beginners course for free.

Click here to find out how you can download the first three lessons for free.

7. Fun First Piano Lesson: 12 Bar Blues

This post was all about another fun, creative and engaging course you can use with your students to get them loving their piano lessons.

The 12 bar blues is the perfect framework for you to use to get your students exploring different styles of music.

Get them improvising and understanding pentatonic scales and various chord types with this course.

This post was written way back in January of last year, so if you missed out on that, why not download some 12 bar blues lesson plans right here? Just enter your email address and you’re all set.

Click here to read the full article. 

8. How to Teach Creatively Using a Piano Method Book

Okay, so you have used Tim’s No Book Beginners course and now you’re moving to using a piano method book.

How can you use one creatively? 

This post will tell you exactly how.

When you introduce a piano method book, it doesn’t mean you have to abandon other creative ways to teach. You can incoporate the method book creatively to ensure your students continue to enjoy lessons.

Find out exactly how by reading the full post here.

9. Group Piano Lessons: Engaging Music Students in the Sharing Age

Another course we released this year was on group piano teaching.

This post was Tim’s introduction to group teaching, a style of teaching many teachers don’t think about too often.

If you’re interested in teaching groups but don’t know where to get started, then this post could be the inspiration you need to go out there and transform your teaching.

Group piano teaching provides plenty of opportunities for you to increase your income and marketing potential. Could it be time you try something new?

Read about the benefits of group piano teaching.

10. What’s the Difference Between a Chord Chart and a Lead Sheet?

A different style of post, but one that had plenty of teachers talking!

Do you know the difference between a chord chart and a lead sheet? Could you explain it to your students?

Getting your students reading these charts is another way to increase their musical vocabulary.

Find out exactly what the difference is between a chord chart and a lead sheet.

Community

All of the courses spoken about in this blog post are available in full to the Inner Circle.

This is a supportive community of piano teachers from around the world that engage with another on their journey towards providing a more creative musical education.

If this sounds like something you might be interested in, click here for more information.

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About the Author

Sean is one of Tim's former piano students, now in his third year of study at the University of Melbourne. Majoring in Italian and Media and Communications, he hopes to one day work as a journalist overseas.

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