What Do I Practice Over the Summer?

by Amy Turner

In a few days it will be summer break time. For some, summer break will mean the end of a year of piano lessons. If a school year of piano lessons followed by a break over the summer is the proverbial "two steps forward and one step back," our year at Pfafftown Piano has strongly challenged that. I'd say we've taken 18, 25, maybe 40 steps forward this year! From a September full of beginners to our unRecital in the fall to the National Guild of Piano Teachers Auditions in the spring, we have worked hard and played beautifully, and all students should be proud of the 2017-2018 year. So what should you do this summer?

If you take a break this summer, enjoy it. Marinate and simmer on what you've learned this year. Look for music. Listen for music. Recognize and find music. When you walk by your piano, check your scales. Can you still play them? Sit down once in a while with a piece to play for fun, not for perfection or to be critiqued by your teacher. Begin to set a goal or goals for yourself for next year, and return refreshed in September.

If you do not take a break from lessons this summer, enjoy the steady momentum toward your piano goals. For variety, feel free to step away from your method books and attempt that sonatina in your classics book, or try to master that favorite hymn. Maybe try some composition or improvisation to challenge your mind. Or continue the climb toward the next level in your preferred method. 

A diversion is not quitting, and neither is a break. Whatever you choose, know that your teacher is so proud of your accomplishments this year!

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