Guest: Dr. Linda Christensen
It was a treat to spend the morning with Dr. Linda Christensen. Dr. Christensen teaches applied piano, group piano, and music technology at Wayne State College. She holds a BA from Weber State University, an MM in Piano Performance and Pedagogy from Southern Methodist University, and a Ph.D. in Piano Pedagogy from the University of Oklahoma. Dr. Christensen is active in MTNA, and serves as the Nebraska State President. She is in high demand as a clinician, and is a frequent presenter for MTNA, NCKP (National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy), WPA (World Piano Association) and the Hawaii International Conference on Arts and Humanities. She is on the Musical Advisory Board for JoyTunes.
Dr. Christensen gave a two-part lecture on Motivating Students to Practice Piano through Gamification. The first session introduced the innovative Piano Maestro app by JoyTunes. Piano Maestro is an iPad app that listens and evaluates students at the piano. It is an excellent tool to improve sight reading and rhythm, while increasing student motivation at the same time. The best part is that the app is FREE for teachers!
The second session was a survey of Dr. Christensen’s favorite apps for teaching. Here is the golden list:
~ Chord Tracker by Yamaha
~Treble Cat/Bass Cat/Rhythm Cat
Linda also encouraged our group to engage with the larger community of music teachers through online Facebook forums: iPad Piano Teachers, JoyTunes Teachers, Piano Teacher Central, Professional Piano Teachers.