Welcome to the Mrozinski Piano Studio!
March 20, 2020
I’m sure you’re feeling overwhelmed with everything that’s currently going on around us. With our children now home from school I know that your life has drastically changed. As someone who has been a part of your child’s life each week, I wanted to reach out.
In a time when your children’s schedules and routines have been turned upside down, there is one thing that can remain: music! Music has always given people hope, and people have always turned to music in difficult times.
With all of the changes that have happened so rapidly in their lives, the piano can be very helpful in maintaining a sense of normalcy in the weeks and months ahead. During these times of social distancing, your children will find themselves with more free time. Playing the piano can help fill the void that the loss of other activities has created while also providing a sense of purpose, control, and accomplishment.
Ensuring piano practice happens regularly will also keep your children’s skills polished, and prevent the loss of all the musical knowledge they have gained recently. We have worked so hard to progress, and that progress can be maintained and boosted with regular practice over the coming weeks.
While you begin to create a new schedule for your family, I thought it would be helpful to share some tips for incorporating home practice into your new routines.
- Set aside time each day that will always be “piano practice time”. Post a schedule on your fridge and stick to it as best you can. Your children will appreciate a predictable routine right now. Practice is more likely to happen if it takes place at the same time each day. I recommend practicing in the morning as your children will be fresh and free from other distractions that will inevitably happen over the course of a day.
- Try to be present during your children’s practice, even if you are just listening. Depending on age, your children may need basic assistance (organizing materials, reading my lesson notes, troubleshooting) or they may simply appreciate your physical presence in the room. Sit and have your morning cup of coffee as your children make music. You’ll likely look forward to this “break from reality” too!
- Keep your piano area free from distractions. For piano to become a happy reprieve, turn off the TV, remove younger siblings or pets and make the practice space welcoming. Be sure to declutter and organize materials so they are easily at hand. Your children may enjoy taking on the project of creating a “piano practice nest” (making their piano area cozy and welcoming).
- Be encouraging and positive about your children’s attempts at the piano. Don’t worry about fixing mistakes you may hear (that’s my job!) and instead be a cheerleader to your children’s learning efforts. Mistakes can be easily fixed. Right now, the focus should be on being enthusiastic about the learning process.
- Provide “reasons” for your children to practice. I know that family members who are not in physical contact with you right now would LOVE to have recorded performances or live FaceTime performances of your children’s music-making. Prepping for any sort of performance can be very motivating to children.
I will continue to provide your child with fun, motivating material that they will be excited to practice, and I look forward to helping the piano be a constant in their lives during this time.
As always, if you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask!
Vonnie Mrozinski, NCTM
March 15, 2020
The COVID-19 virus has certainly impacted all areas of our lives within just a few days. It is good to see that our local, state and national leaders are providing steps to limit the spread of the virus, yet there is so much fear about the situation. I am amazed after a trip to a couple of stores yesterday at the empty shelves. I hope that each of you are taking steps that you need to feel safe and protected during this time.
Out of an abundance of caution I am cancelling the group lessons scheduled for tomorrow, Monday, March 16. Concerning private lessons, there will be lessons this week with the following considerations:
*I am healthy, my family is healthy (Dixon is healthy!)
*I am committed to good hygiene practices as suggested by the CDC for my home and the studio.
*You and your student are healthy and are also following good hygiene practices as suggested by the CDC with your family and in your home.
Upon arriving, students will be asked to wash hands for 20 seconds with soap and water. Students will be given hand sanitizer at the end of the lesson before leaving. I will be wiping the keyboard between each student.
If your child or anyone in your family show signs of being sick, getting sick, having runny sniffles or just generally not feeling "right", I would ask that you consider having online lessons, either through FaceTime or Skype. I know online lessons are not as effective as live lessons, but we can adapt to the best of our circumstances.
For otherwise healthy students and family, we will have normal lessons next week.
Spring Break is March 23 - 29. No lessons.
Finally, it is during a difficult time like this that I remember one of my life verses, 2 Timothy 1:7: God did not give us a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind.
Thank you for all your consideration and support and staying as normal as possible during this concerning time! I will plan on seeing each of you at your regularly scheduled lesson unless you email that you would prefer an online lesson.
Vonnie Mrozinski, NCTM