Santa Clarita Elementary Blog for Parents

Dear Parents,

Welcome to your Weekly Report Blog!

Here you will learn about all that we have covered with your wonderful children during the week. This blog is updated weekly. Please check periodically for the updates.

Please note: NO REFUNDS are issued after the program has started and no make ups or pro-rate are offered if a child misses a class.

DECEMBER 6, 2017  -- Hello! Next week is our very last week! Thank you to all of my students who have worked hard week after week. This week, we reviewed Twinkle Twinkle again, as well as pages 19-21, and our notes E, F, and G! I must say that all of my students are doing a very good job with rhythm, and feeling the music. As they get better and better at finding the right frets, they will find reading music easier. The new song we learned this week is called “Solid Rock” on page 22. I would ask that the students practice reading the note names out loud, and then play it. If they struggle with playing the whole song, have them master two measures (or 8 notes) at a time. Just as an example, the first 8 notes are “g, g, g, g, f, f, f, f.” Have your student say those out loud, and then play them. After mastering those, move on to the next 8 notes. I told the class that I would like us to play “Solid Rock” together next week, and so it is their responsibility to learn the song as best they can. Thank you!

NOVEMBER 29, 2017 - We accomplished a lot this week in guitar! We warmed up with some rhythm exercises and games, and then we reviewed our notes E, F, and learned a new note, G! We also warmed up with a five-note scale, Hot Cross Buns, and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. Ask your students if they can play those for you! In our books, we played “The Spanish Bullfight”, and “Same Note Blues” to solidify learning the notes E and F! Then we actually read music on page 21, which is awesome! We all practiced the song “The Gypsy” together, and it is my hope that the students will all come ready to play that song next week!

NOVEMBER 15, 2017 - This week in guitar class we finished learning “Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star!” It was awesome! We have an entire two weeks off, so I will encourage for the students to become as familiar as possible with all of the songs and pages that we have done so far. During future classes, we will start reviewing some of these songs as warm-ups! We began learning actual note names this week, and how it looks on the page! By next class, the students should be familiar with the notes “E” and “F.” Also, during rhythm practice, we practiced quarter notes, half notes, AND whole notes! I think we all really enjoy the rhythm section of class. It is a lot of fun! For my students who feel like they aren’t getting everything we go over in class, don’t worry! You are all learning well! I would encourage you to keep practicing at home! Also, just a reminder to my students, while I am not their every-day teacher, I still expect them to sit quiet and listen when I ask them to. I understand they have just finished a long school day, and are ready to run free! I do allow some free-play time with the guitars, but when it is time to pay attention and play as a group, I hope that we will be more focused in future sessions.

OCTOBER 25, 2017 - Hello!  This week in guitar class we moved on to the next song in the book, hot cross buns! Since we do not have class next week, I would love to hear ‘Hot Cross Buns,’ and ‘Rain, Rain, Go Away’ performed for our next class. I would also greatly encourage all students to move on to the next page and begin practicing that as well!

I am having a great time with the students, and they really enjoy our “breaks” where we play rhythm games for 5 minutes or so. This helps them strum in time with their guitars. They also are grasping the concepts of playing VERY well, and the more help they get from you parents at home with holding the guitar correctly and practicing pressing down the strings in the correct places, the better! Ask your kids: they know how to find the right frets and everything!

Friendly reminder- as your kids are practicing, they will find that their fingers hurt from pressing down the strings. This is perfectly normal. IF they practice daily for a half hour or so, their fingers should get tough within a couple of weeks.

Also, if your kids feel like they don’t have enough to practice, and they feel confident going on in the book, I encourage them to improve their skills as much as they desire!

OCTOBER 18, 2017 -- Hello!  This week in guitar we reviewed a lot of material. We had a few new students that we wanted to make sure were included in everything that we learned last week! So we reviewed Olympic Bronze, Silver, and Gold. Even so, we all were able to move on to the next song in the book “Rain, Rain, Go Away.” I encouraged the kids to practice this song at home because of the tricky notes in measure 3.  We also had fun playing rhythm games to help us strum together better!  We learned the difference between a quarter note (one beat) and a half note (two beats). We also sat in a circle and practiced our rhythm by clapping our hands and sharing our favorite color in rhythm.

OCTOBER 11, 2017 -- Our first guitar class was a lot of fun! We started by playing a name game to get to know one another better. Then we took out our brand new guitars, tuned the higher strings and got started playing!

The main things we learned yesterday were how to hold the guitar, how to strum, and what frets were and how to use them to play different notes on the higher E string. We practiced “downstrokes” and an “upstrokes” in rhythm. By the end of this lesson, we began work on the song “Olympic Gold” on page 13. Next lesson it is our goal to be able to play Olympic Gold even better, and move on to learn a few more notes on the E string!

 

Please note:

We do offer private, one-on-one music lessons in the comfort of your home. So, we suggest to continue your children’s training with one of our outstanding instructors so they don’t have a long gap between lessons, and therefore hinder their progress.

Thank you very much.

Oksana and Staff

www.oksanaschoolofmusic.com


Please watch this TED Ed video on YouTube to understand the importance of music lessons:

Original video is posted on TED Ed - Lessons Worth Sharing!