Do I Really Need to Copyright My Piano Music? [The answer from attorneys may surprise you!]

Do I Need to Copyright My Music? I love how it is becoming popular for piano teachers and piano students to compose music! Because it's so popular, it's also becoming easier with all the notation apps, programs, and advice from published composers coming out. But one of the questions that gets [...]

The Forgotten Step In Teaching Students to Write Good Melodies

What is the forgotten step in teaching students to write good melodies? It's one that any piano teacher (even ones who don't compose) can do with their students.

New Composition Contest for Teens!

I'm thrilled to be able to tell you that there is a brand new composition contest for teenagers beginning this year! There are no limits on style or content, so this competition is literally open to any teenage student. I have added this contest to the Composition Contests for Students [...]

The Young Musician’s Guide to Songwriting – Interview and Giveaway!

I'm so excited to tell you about this new book that's already topping the Amazon charts! I've known Lisa Lukas for years now and have loved to hear about her own compositions and her work with young songwriters. So, when I heard that she was writing a book to help [...]

A New Idea to Get More Student Composers!

Over the past few months, I've had several conversations with teachers from Indiana, Florida, and elsewhere about how to encourage more students to compose and enter compositions in festivals and competitions. Well, as I was judging the Indiana Music Teachers Association's Opus Composition Festival, I thought of a new idea! A [...]

“What, Me Composing?” How To Introduce Composing to Piano Students

How Do You Introduce Composing to Students? I wrote an article about this in a past issue of the American Music Teacher and also frequently present this idea in the Composition for Kids workshop. It's one of those questions that is asked frequently but has a multitude of possible answers. I'd [...]

What to Do When Pulseless Piano Pupils Compose – Student Composers with no Rhythm

What To Do When Teaching Student Composers With No Rhythm You are teaching student composers and Pete comes into the lesson and excitedly says, "Mrs. S, I made up a song this week!" Of course you are going to jump up and down with him and tell him how much you want [...]

By |2016-12-31T15:19:55-06:00February 28th, 2014|Composition Corner, Piano Teaching|1 Comment

How Much is Too Much Help for Composing Students?

How Much is Too Much Help for Composing Students? A teacher recently sent me this question about how much is "too much" help in assisting an elementary student in a competition contest. I thought I'd share what I shared with her in case it might help you. One of my [...]

New Competitions for Student Composers!

One of the purposes of this blog is to help teachers encourage student creativity, improvisation and composition. You can find practice articles on how to teach composition in the Composition for Kids category as well as a comprehensive list of all the competitions available to students composers. I have recently [...]

Composition Competitions for Students

Composition Competitions and Contests for Young Students Here is a list of some of the composition competitions of which I am aware. If you know of others that are national, please leave them in the comments section and I'll add them! (updated 2016) NextNotes High School Composition Awards This is [...]