Parents’ Blog for Tesoro Del Valle Elementary School

Dear Parents,

Welcome to the new 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.


December 13, 2017 - PIANO  - This week, the children worked on the song "alouette" during class. It was a great piece to wrap up the 8 weeks because it used all four notes we've learned. The quarter note, half note, dotted half note, and the whole note. Some children forgot their keyboards, and everyone did a great job of sharing and taking turns during class. My hope is that the kids have enjoyed learning about piano and that they'll continue to play at home! Happy Holidays!

December 13, 2017 - GUITAR  - During our final class today, the guitar students reviewed tuning their guitars, the notes they have learned so far, and some simple rhythms and counting. All the students, beginning and returning, have worked hard over the last eight weeks and have furthered their knowledge of the instrument. They were a pleasure to teach!

December 6, 2017 - PIANO  - This week in class, the children worked on the song Deck the Halls. We learned a couple new notes, the dotted quarter note and the eighth note. Many of the kids enjoyed this familiar melody! I was very impressed with the positive attitudes the kids brought to class today! Merry Christmas!

December 6, 2017 - GUITAR  -Today in class the Tesoro guitar students continued learning new notes on their guitars and working on songs that applied these new skills. The beginner students should practice page 22, which incorporates notes E, F, and G at the top of the staff, in preparation for their final class next week. The older students should keep working forward in their books on the pieces assigned at the end of class.

November 29, 2017 - GUITAR -- The guitar students at Tesoro did extremely well in yesterday's class. The beginner students have graduated from just playing by numbered frets to beginning to read notes on a staff. They learned two new notes—E and F. Their homework for the week to work on page 21 in their books, which alternates between the two. The other guitar students are working hard and progressing quickly as well. Each of them has new notes to practice and knows the page in the book to prepare for next class.

November 29, 2017 - PIANO  - This week, we worked in the song Angels We Have Heard on High, just in time for Christmas! Many of the children picked up on it quickly, so we worked on variations to make it more challenging. We played it with both right and left hands, and then all five fingers. A few of the kids even added notes to harmonize with the melody. It was great to have all fifteen students in class today!

November 15, 2017 - PIANO  - Today in class, we worked on the song Frere Jacques. Most of the children were familiar with the tune, although it was new to a few of them. We went over the difference between quarter notes and half notes and briefly talked about timing. Another thing we've been working on is keeping our headphones plugged in and hands to ourselves! Happy Thanksgiving!

November 15, 2017 - GUITAR  - In guitar class this week the beginning students continued working with fret numbers, using them to play "Hot Cross Buns" and "Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star." Their homework for the week is to keep working on pages 15-16 in their book. The older students learned several new notes, and are increasing their repertoire of songs. Their homework is to keep practicing the page they stopped on in class, and to move forward once that song is solid.

November 8, 2017 - GUITAR - Today in class the beginning students continued to work on their technique in moving between the 7th, 5th, and 3rd frets and an open string with smooth and even movements. Their homework for the week is to practice page 15 ("Hot Cross Buns") to further their proficiency. The returning students both continued working through their books and were able to demonstrate leadership by acting as teacher helpers and showing the beginners how to play their pieces and working with them. Their homework for the week is to continue practicing the songs they began in class.

November 8, 2017 - PIANO -- This week, the children worked on the song Jingle Bells. We learned about repeat signs, and first and second endings. We also talked a little bit about timing and learned the difference between quarter, half, and whole notes.

October 25, 2017  - GUITAR - Today in guitar class the students continued to work on producing different notes by using an open E string and the third, fifth, and seventh frets. The beginning students practiced "Rain, Rain, Go Away" and are encouraged to look ahead to "Hot Cross Buns." As they are practicing, it is common for beginners (or students who have not played in a while) to experience some discomfort on the tips of their fingers from pushing down on the strings. Don’t give up! Take breaks when practicing if needed, but continued practice is the key to getting past the soreness.

The more advanced students are continuing to work at their own level, and were able to perform some harder songs for the rest of the class. Keep up the good work!

October 25, 2017  - PIANO  - Today, the children worked on Mary had a Little Lamb which used the same five notes (C, D, E, F, and G) as Ode to Joy last week. We reviewed how the order of the notes follow the order of the letters in the alphabet. Once the students had mastered playing the song with one finger, we worked on playing it with all five fingers. A few of the children had it down well enough to play it in front of the class. A few of the returning students went ahead to practice Jolly Old Saint Nicholas. Most did a great job of practicing at home!

October 18, 2017  - PIANO  - Today during the beginning piano class at Tesoro elementary, the children worked on the first song in the curriculum, Ode to Joy. We learned how the notes on the keyboard follow the order of the alphabet and focused on notes C, D, E, F, and G, for the song. Some returning student went ahead in their books to work on more challenging songs.

October 18, 2017  - GUITAR - Today in guitar class at Tesoro Elementary the new beginning students worked on playing an open string and adding the fifth fret. They are working on pages 12 and 13 in their books. The returning students worked independently on songs that built on where they left off from last semester, and even performed parts of them for the new students to the class. As a group, we are continuing to work on tuning the guitars and keeping a steady beat as we play together.

October 11, 2017  -  PIANO & GUITAR - Today it was our first class of the Fall semester.  It was great meeting all your wonderful children.  The students were divided in two different groups: new and returning students.

Today it was our introductory class and the kids got to meet their instructors, as well as their classmates.  Each child has received his/her keyboard, guitars and materials.  The children were learning how to operate their instruments and their components.  Piano students also placed the music stickers on the keys, to help them learn the curriculum songs.  Each piano student received also a new curriculum book and the teachers explained which songs they will be learning this semester.  Each child wrote his/her name on their instruments and materials, so as to avoid confusions.

Please remind your children to take good care of their instruments as they are fragile.

Please keep in mind that since this is a group class, and every student learns at the pace of the group, it is expected that some children may be faster than others in learning.  In this group class we all work as a team, so the faster students get to help their study partners.


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

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!