I think we can all agree that learning piano is far superior to any other activity available to children :). But everything has an Achilles heel, and when it comes to the piano lessons, lack of community is it!
Piano lessons are, for the most part, a solo endeavor. Students do not have the natural built-in community that a sport like soccer or an activity like dance. And, as we all know, children need a sense of belonging… a community.
If you want your piano studio to thrive, and if you want to compete with team sports, then building a community should be high on your priority list! Fortunately for you, we have a great activity (and a free printable) to kick off your community building. Read on!
My Piano Pal Composing Activity
Building community does not mean piano students have to meet face-to-face… but they do have to build an emotional connection. With today’s activity your students will get to know some fun facts about their piano friends.
Next week, give each of your students the My Piano Pal Printable. They can complete the activity with your help, or take it home and return it the following week (this is the better use of your lesson time).
When you’ve collected all of the completed sheets, shuffle them up and, during the next week of lessons, have each of your students select a different students’ My Piano Pal Printable. Everyone will now have a piano pal… kind of like a pen pal.
A Piano Piece For My Pal
Now that each of your students has a Piano Pal, their job over the next few weeks is to compose a piano piece for their pal. This is, of course, done with your guidance and direction. In fact, it’s a wonderful opportunity to introduce composing! It is important that the pieces your students create draw on the My Piano Pal Printables for inspiration; the title, mood, tempo, and dynamics (and maybe even lyrics) of each piece should connect with the themes from each Pal’s list of “favorites”.
Your piano students, regardless of age, will love the connections they make with their new Piano Pals. Having this camaraderie and sense of community can do nothing but great things for your studio. And… you’ll have generated some very motivating repertoire for your piano students to play! Repeat this activity several times throughout the year simply by rotating the Piano Pal sheets, and you’ll build a wide network of friendships within your studio. You could even host a recital where your students perform each other’s pieces!
If you’re eager to get started with the My Piano Pal community builder and would love a great composing resource to give your piano students a solid foundation in how to compose then check The Curious Case of Muttzart and Ratmaninoff (adventures in composing)