Keith Snell

Now to choose a method–my first private piano student just signed up. Wait. There are HOW MANY piano methods out there???

How in the world will you decide which to use?

Last month I wrote about starting a private music teaching studio. Five questions I’m most often asked, and one question no one asks, but probably should. Future articles will explore guitar and vocal methods, lesson supplements and business aspects of starting a private music teaching studio.


You could simply start out using the books you learned from as a kid. But you might find others that fit you or your student better.

Ask These Questions about Each Method


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Spring is here, and many music publishers have sent out their spring catalogue. I have always believed in using a variety of method books and supplementary materials for my studio. Compared to say twenty years ago, we as teachers are very lucky today that there are so many wonderful resources to choose from, and many publishers offer substantial teacher discount. There are some methods that are tried and true, but I am always interested in the latest publications and research in music education. Here are some of my favorite sheet music websites that I frequently visit and buy from:

1. Hal Leonard

If you have not taken advantage of Hal Leonard’s teacher VIP program, you have missed out big time! You get 40% discount off retail on selected books. There is a two copy limit per title, but it is a great way to restock favorites and try something new. My favorites include their Recital Showcase and Composer Showcase series, where pieces by living composers such as Jennifer Linn, Phillip Keveren and Carol Klose are featured. Shipping and handling is extra, but if you order above a certain amount, there is usually a free gift!


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