Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Winter Recital, December 10, 2011

The Little Musicians had two wonderful recitals this past Saturday.  They sang three Christmas songs as a large group.  Then some students played their piano pieces while other students sang the songs they had been working on in voice class.  I am so proud of all of them.  They worked hard, practiced hard and performed spectacularly!  Here are three short videos of the 2pm recital singing Christmas songs.

Up on a Housetop!
Jingle Bells!
We Wish You a Merry Christmas!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

Monday, December 12, 2011

How to Get a Good Beginner's Bow Position

I teach a lot of young beginner violin students.  I'm talking 3, 4, and 5 years old!

Parents need to help these little ones hold their bows correctly when they practice at home.  This video shows beginning violin students how to make a bow position. 

Make sure at the end to have a bent thumb and a curved pinky! 

Remember to have fun!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Practice Christmas Songs with Ms. Tonya!

Our Little Musicians classes will be singing 3 Christmas Songs for our recital on December 10th at 2pm.  They can watch these videos and sing along with Ms. Tonya and a few of her students!

Up on a House Top!

Jingle Bells!

We Wish You a Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Let's number our fingers!

Young children learn fingerplays and songs to learn the names of their fingers and to practice wiggling them separately.  "Where is Thumpkin" is a popular one.  My favorite is the fingerplay "Mr. Wiggle and Mr. Waggle".

 Well, we number our fingers to make piano playing easier.  Watch this video to see how the fingers are numbered. Then practice saying the finger numbers and wiggling each finger seperately.

Where do their fingers go?

Parents without musical experience often have a hard time helping their young children practice piano.  They aren't quite sure where fingers are suppose to go on the keyboard.  This video shows where to put fingers for beginning songs that have fingers on the black keys and where to put fingers for middle C position.

Happy practicing!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Miss Rachel says Hello!

I LOVE music!

I have loved music all my life. I started asking to take violin lessons at the age of two, after watching a string quartet at my grandparent's anniversary party. My parents made me wait for a year to make sure I really wanted to play. When I turned three I started taking private violin lessons.
The teacher I had was amazing and knew just how to encourage me in my musical endeavors. My mom was a huge part of my musical education, especially when I was a beginner. I have graduated from all ten books of the Suzuki Method and have also done two years of post-graduate work. I am also taking piano and voice lessons.
I started teaching violin at the age of thirteen, after training with my teacher for a year. I teach the Suzuki Method, since I am a firm believer that anyone can learn to make music.
 My goal is to transfer my love of music to my students and teach them to use music as a way to express and explore their emotions and thoughts.  I would like to study Music Therapy and help children with special needs to use music as a way to learn and grow.

I hope the things I write on this blog will encourage you, your children, or your students in your musical journey!
Miss Rachel


Welcome to Strings, Keys and Melodies!
Music has been a huge part of my life.  At 4 years of age, I began singing duets with my brother.  Then followed years of musicals, church ensembles and choirs, piano, voice, and guitar lessons.
My own daughters began violin lessons at 3 years of age.  So I began my journey of being a music mom.  I have watched music give them confidence and grace in every aspect of their lives.  Music has always been a part of our homeschooling family.
I teach music to preschool students, early elementary school students, and students with special needs.  My classes include general music as well as piano, voice, guitar and beginning violin.
Rhythms, body movement, call and response, voicing the right tones are all important parts of early music training.
Music theory and musical notation is important in mastering an instrument.

My oldest daughter, Rachel, and I are starting this blog to provide parents and teachers ideas and techniques they can use to cultivate the love of music in their students.  We want people to love music and use it as a way of expressing their feelings and emotions.

Thank you for joining us on this journey!
Ms. Tonya