March Teacher’s Guide
This issue features the life and music of Sergei Rachmaninoff. Students will enjoy listening to the beautiful works he composed, especially those for the piano. He was also a conductor and this important position is explained in the issue as well. Rachmaninoff once said, “A good conductor ought to be a good chauffeur; the qualities that make the one also make the other. They are concentration, an incessant control of attention, and presence of mind; the conductor only has to add a little sense of music.” Have students look at the different styles of the various conductors on the student page. Which style do they prefer? Do they notice differences depending on the tempos and styles of the works?
Reminder: The composition contest ends on March 6th! All compositions must be faxed or postmarked by that date.
Answers to March Puzzles
Mystery Composers (page 5)
Beethoven, Vivaldi, Debussy
Word Search (page 14)
Quiz (page 15)
1. a 2. a 3. d 4. a 5. a 6. b 7. harp 8. a
You can renew or order Piano Explorer for your students at our online store. Or email us with your order or if we can answer any questions: [email protected] (Address changes may be sent here as well.) Call 888-446-6888 toll free during business hours. Remember you may adjust your quantity at any time during the year.
Renew or Adjust Subscription Numbers
You can adjust group numbers or renew your subscription at any point during the year. We will prorate your subscription, and you only pay for the issues you receive.
Call 888-446-6888 or email [email protected].
Coming in April: Antonín Dvořák and Polish Pianist/Composer Maria Wołowska Szymanowska
While we are continuing to print the winning compositions from this year’s contest, we would like to remind teachers that we also print non-contest music throughout the year (once we have published all of the winners’ pieces). Students can write music on any topic. We cannot return music, so students should keep a copy. Write the student’s name, age, address, and teacher’s name on the back of the music. All music must be original work. Send pieces to Piano Explorer, Music Corner, 1838 Techny Court, Northbrook, IL 60062.
Annual Composition Contest
The contest deadline is March 6th. Winners will be announced in the May/June issue. Full information is available on the home page and in the magazine. Note you must subscribe to Piano Explorer to submit a composition.
100 Day Challenge
Encourage your students to try the 100 Day challenge. If they practice every day for 100 days, send their information to us and we will print their names in the magazine. We have heard from many teachers that this has been an exciting incentive for their students. If students are away on vacation or are sick, they must still do something with music each day. The specifics are up to the teacher but some ideas are: listening to music, studying their pieces without a piano, reading Piano Explorer, writing a composition, or researching a composer, piece or musical period.
The completed practice sheets continue to pour in. If you haven’t tried this with your students, you can still start now. Please email us names of students who complete the challenge to: [email protected]. Include the student’s name, age, state, and teacher’s name as well as how many days of practice the student has completed. Please do not mail them in.
As one teacher said, “The 100 days of practicing has inspired my students to more than I thought each was capable!”
We will continue this challenge in the upcoming year, and students may start at any time. Check out the students who have played for 100 days at https://pianoexplorer.net/100-day-challenge/
Many teachers ask what students should do when they are sick or on vacation. We offer the following guidelines:
It is up to the individual teachers to decide what is best for their students. However, the one requirement is that students must do something music related every day – even on vacation. Teachers and students have been very creative about this. Some ideas for vacation practice have included listening to music, bringing their sheet music and studying it each day, researching/reading about composers, reading Piano Explorer, listening to music clips on peforkids.com, writing a composition, or doing a report on a composer, musician or time. Others have found a piano where they are traveling or brought along a keyboard. The goal is for students to do something related to their music study for at least a few minutes each day no matter what so that practicing becomes a regular part of their lives.