This week, we made the following improvements:

  • Solved an issue with sort ordering and saving on the announcement page.
  • Modified repeat options for blocked dates to reduce confusion and errors.
  • Clarified the Calendar tab of the settings page for students, parents, and adult students.
  • Updated to solve bug and permissions issue with practice records modifications.
  • Clarified help messages on the “Student Contact List Report” page.
  • Updated the make up credit selection drop down when reconciling a lesson to only show make up lessons of relevant students when adding a new event.
  • Corrected a bug on the Make Up Lessons page when logging in as a student, parent, or adult student.
  • Solved an issue with Japanese time zones and the calendar page header date display.
  • Corrected a bug that caused broken links when logged in as an adult student or parent and clicking links to blog posts.
  • Removed a bug that caused html to show in the message preview on the announcement page.
  • Added support for the Israeli Shekel currency symbol.

To all our U.S. members, have an excellent Thanksgiving holiday next Thursday!

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Posted in New Features and Fixes

Learning, Playing and Teaching Music by Intention

What truly distinguishes music that feels warm and human from music that seems cold and computer-like?  Intention.  We can teach expression in music nearly from day one, by thinking of the intention of the music we play.

When a computer plays music from a MIDI file, it plays the correct pitch and note value of each note at the correct time.  A musician may play that same music with relatively correct pitch, note value, and timing, because there is an intention to lean in one direction or another.  In some music software, computer programmers have added a “humanize” feature, which simply randomizes the starting time of a note very slightly.  The programmers imagine that the difference between computers and humans is perfection vs imperfection.  They don’t realize, or maybe just can’t possibly program, the real difference:  intention.

A musician (except on an instrument such as the piano where there is no pitch control) will play a pitch that sounds best within the context.  For example, Read more…

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Posted in Performing, Practicing, Teaching Tips

We hope you had a great week. Some minor updates made this week:

  • Updated the notification that appears when editing a blocked date for clarity to reduce confusion.
  • Solved a problem when setting attendance from the Calendar that caused status to not be saved in specific cases.

In addition to the updates, we are finalizing the new Music Teacher’s Helper look! Currently,  we’re testing to make sure the software works great on all devices, including tablets. What device do you primarily use Music Teacher’s Helper on? Let us know in the comments. 

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Posted in New Features and Fixes

talk to the experts

On Monday, November 16th at 12 p.m EST, join Brandon Pearce, David Cutler, and Kristin Yost for a one-hour live talk answering your pressing questions about running a music teaching studio.

Don’t miss out on this unique opportunity to gain insight that will help you to flourish as a music teaching studio owner! Head over to the page to learn more about the panelists and ask questions in the comments section. The panelists will answer your questions during the talk. 

Here’s the link again:

Don’t want to forget the date and time? Text savvy to 38470 to receive two event reminders to your phone.

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Posted in Financial Business, Music News, Press, Professional Development, Studio Management

Reuben Vincent

Piano Fingering Success

November 10th, 2015 by

piano fingers

The other month I stumbled on my very first piano tutor book from when I was a seven-year-old. The thing that struck me, as I thumbed through the pages, was that my music teacher had written the word “fingering” on almost every page! I can still hear the frustration in his voice as he yet again tried to explain to me the pitfalls of using “any old finger.”

As a piano teacher myself now, it fascinates me that some students have a natural tendency towards following fingering and others, like me, need constant nagging!

Light bulb!

Most sheet music editions have all the fingering suggestions carefully printed but one of my adult students was learning an arrangement without any fingering. In times past, I would pencil in my suggestions but this time I asked him to go away and work out what fingering would work best. The result was amazing! Not only had he enjoyed “taking ownership” of his fingering but it had made him think long and hard about Read more…

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Posted in Composing & Arranging, Teaching Tips

SAKURAKO - Piano lesson.

It’s a harsh reality that the private music students you’re teaching right now will not be the same students you’re teaching a year or two from now. Every business goes through it. In the recurring revenue business world we call it “churn”, that is what percentage of your students quit from period to period. If you don’t refill the coffers with new students, eventually you won’t have a studio left. But what if you could just reduce your churn? What if you could keep your students much longer?

I’ve connected thousands of students to music teachers over the years, and have heard every reason in the book for why the student has to quit. Don’t just accept it! You can have a lot of control over whether or not your students continue.

Read more…

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Posted in Financial Business, Promoting Your Studio, Studio Management

This week we released a major codebase improvement as part of our ongoing efforts to modernize the software and increase speed, stability, and security. We hope that you are seeing the results with fast response times and zero downtime. Other improvements made this week:

  • Corrected a bug that caused an “Invalid Format” error for some members to appear when entering parent email addresses.
  • Made the date field required when creating an invoice.
  • Added a notification that appears when a link is deleted from the links area to make the process more clear.
  • Updated the student registration form to make selecting student birthdays easier in the date picker popup.
  • Solved a bug that occurred when navigating to the student homepage and teacher announcement page for some members.
  • Fixed the search function on the Fees and Credits page to show correct results.
  • Added several help prompts and info boxes to help teachers navigate the site more effectively.

Have a wonderful weekend!

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Posted in New Features and Fixes

Created by Kent State University’s School of Music, this inforgraphic shows that music not only has educational merit, but that it can be used to close the educational gap among students and schools. As a private teacher, how much do you value the importance of music in schools? Or what is your reaction to the data in the below visual? Let us know in the comments.

Using Music to Close the Educational Gap
Kent State Online Master of Music in Music Education

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Posted in Music History & Facts, Music Theory

Robin Steinweg

Games/Activities Binder

November 4th, 2015 by

I need help to stay organized. I need inspiration to stay creative. To that end, I keep three binders near. My Command Central binder (studio administration) and Student Files binder (information) help with efficiency. But this one is pure fun. Educational, of course. But fun! My Games/Activities binder.

Games/Activities Binder


When a student needs help with rhythm or note identification, there it is. When I want group games, it’s there. A wiggly youngster in need of off-seat time? There.

I tend to live in the moment. If an item is out of sight, it can cease to exist. The binder nudges my memory.

The Games/Activities binder has a 3-ring pouch of colorful dry-erase markers. Plastic sheet protectors make activity sheets reusable. Write on and wipe off. Pages can be swapped quarterly.

highlighters kept in the games/activities binder

Activities may include:

  • Mazes
  • Search-and-Find (like Where’s Waldo?)
  • Flash card games
  • Card games
  • Color-by-Code
  • Note-identification word games
  • Word searches
  • Crossword and other puzzles
  • Trace the symbols
  • Match the ______________
  • Find the patterns (snatches of music)

screammatchboxnew              game, music 1


  • Notes
  • Rhythm
  • Intervals
  • Ear Training
  • Symbols
  • Assignment Sheet masters for piano, voice and guitar
  • Theory
  • Scales & arpeggios
  • Sight-reading
  • Key identification
  • Improvisation
  • Composition
  • Famous composers & their creative friends (authors, artists…)
  • Music history
  • Ideas (for future group classes/games)
  • Snacks (for group classes/recitals)
  • Resources and wish list


I use an Excel spreadsheet as an index. At a glance, I have the title, supplies needed and location of each, skills/areas covered, age and level, season, and number of players.

Bulky games might be on a shelf or in a drawer.


Certain game pieces are stored separately. Then they can be used for several games. Some games are on iPad.

A number of music teacher bloggers include games and activities on their sites. My resource page includes their links. I highlight games I’d like for my studio.

Here are just a few:

Wendy Stevens                             

Three Cranky Women                  

Joy Morin—Color in my Piano     

Office Playground (desk toys, etc)

Teach Piano Today (Piano Game Club)

Diane Hidy’s Toolbox                   

What methods help you manage your studio? How do you keep the creativity in your teaching? Leave a comment!

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Posted in Music Theory, Teaching Tips

Leila Viss

Wolfie App: A New Reality

November 3rd, 2015 by

Ever wonder what the future of piano lessons will look like? The Wolfie app is it: a new reality. In short, it’s a virtual piano book bag for your students packed with power tools.  No more forgotten books or torn pages as the Wolfie Piano iPad App, developed by Tonara, efficiently stores lesson repertoire on the iPad AND much more.

I first experienced Wolfie at their exhibit booth at NCKP 2015, I played a Clementi sonatina on an acoustic piano (MIDI and cables were NOT required) and read the score from the iPad. Wolfie listened to my playing, turned my pages as I progressed through the piece and after I finished, gave me feedback on my timing and pitch reading accuracy. Isn’t this intelligent listening what we as teachers do at a lesson and wish our students had to assist them during their home practice? Loaded with repertoire of all styles,
Wolfie is designed to be YOUR ears and teaching assistant so that your students stay on track and progress between lessons. Read more…

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Posted in Music & Technology, Practicing, Product Reviews