NEWS AND UPDATES
Musical Summer Fun!
This will be our third year putting on our Musical Arts Summer Camp and we have students returning for the third time because it's so much fun!
We'll do acting, singing, dancing and kids will learn how to play the ukulele, group handbells, drum rhythms and musical games like "name that tune" or "what's the next word in this song" or "what instrument is this?" They will write their own plays and compose their own songs and there's a performance at the end of the week.
We only accept 10 kids in each camp so register today before the week you want fills up!
EXCEPTIONAL STUDENT OF THE MONTH FOR FEBRUARY 2023
Are you doing everything right but you didn't get chosen for Student of the Month?
Keep in mind there are over 60 students enrolled in DAMA and students who are chosen have worked exceptionally hard or have showed exceptional initiative. It's a difficult decision to make and sometimes it comes down to whether students who have been working on a piece are ready to perform it yet or if they had to cancel lessons during the month. It is not about who is the most talented or who has the most potential. It is about honoring the student who stood out because of their work ethic, attitude and initiative.
Be sure to talk with your teacher if you have questions or concerns.
Quinn starting taking piano lessons with Miss Michele when he was in kindergarten. Now, just two years later, he is reading music well enough to challenge himself by learning some of his favorite songs. He requested doing Ghostbusters as a duet and he performed it at our Winter Recital. Since then, he's tackled a Katy Perry song and now he's starting another challenging piece that will bring him to the next level. Quinn keeps a regular practice schedule and he takes his lessons seriously, even though he is super hilarious.
How to Win Student of the Month
Focus during lessons
Have a good attitude
Practice and come to lessons prepared
Show initiative to learn and improve
Attend at least 4 lessons in one month
Be ready to perform the song you are working on
March Raffle Winners:
$25 1st Place = Lillie M.
$15 2nd Place = Simon W.
$5 3rd Place = Robbie P.
Thank you to Elizabeth for picking the tickets.
Raffle tickets are picked on the 1st of the Month. Students 7 and younger receive 1 ticket for every 15 minutes of practice. Students 8 and older receive 1 ticket for every 30 minutes of practice. 1 ticket is awarded for each lesson.
The student with the most tickets at the end of the month will receive a medal.
Practice Derby Winners:
1st Place = Nolan & Lydia B. (31)
2nd Place = Simon W. (23)
3rd Place = Quinn L (21)
John D. (21)
Students who practice at least 20 hours in one month receive a special gold medal. This month Presley S. earned the award again! She earned 41 tickets which is 20.5 hours of practice in February! NICE!!
Presley auditioned for Denver School of the Arts for their piano program and she was accepted! There were only 7 kids in all of Denver chosen for the piano program for 6th grade. Congratulations Presley!
Ann P. 3/12
Quinn L. 3/13
Mikayla J. 3/15
Sean F. 3/25
Mark your Calendar:
DAMA Musical Arts Summer Camp
Registration is now Open!
Group Make-up Lesson
Open to students who had to cancel a lesson (Sep.-Mar.) and were unable to reschedule. No need to register.
Saturday 3/18 11-11:45am
Students may cancel 1 lesson during spring break with no payment due. There is no set week because students go to different schools with different weeks off. Please inform your teacher ASAP about the date you will be out so we can reschedule other students.
Friday 5/19 6-7pm
Saturday 5/20 10:30-11:30am
Rehearsals are not required but highly suggested so students can practice performing.
Sunday, May 21 Time TBD
Please mark your calendar and save the date! We will have either 2 or 3 groups starting at different times in the afternoon. Recitals are an important part of learning music. Please make every effort to attend.
From Miss Michele's Bench
We learn as children that, in life, we have to buck up and do stuff we don't feel like doing sometimes. Homework, taking out the trash, making our beds, for example. I could not understand why my mom cared if my room was a mess. She'd get so mad if my clothes were everywhere except the closet or when she would find fuzzy tiny lily pads floating in a glass of an unidentifiable liquid on my dresser. I kept my door closed, so what difference did it make? Now I know.
Life won't always be comfortable. It's our nature to seek comfort because we are hard wired to avoid pain. As parents, we are torn between making our kids do stuff they don't want to do and wanting them to be happy and comfortable. (This is especially compounded as a grandma). I remember the feeling after spending a Saturday cleaning my room. As much as I resented Mom for making me stay home until I was done cleaning, I remember how good it felt when I was done. It was a sense of relief and a sense of control; though I would not have been able to clarify or verbalize that at the time.
So the question is, do we make our kids practice their music lessons even when they don't feel like it? Do we let them decide if they should practice at all? I can't answer that question for you but I CAN tell you the benefits of making children practice on a regular schedule:
1-Structure. Kids crave structure whether they know it or not. Scheduling days and times that they will practice provides structure.
2- Accountability. Your end of the bargain is that you are investing in their lessons and providing transportation to those lessons and their end of the bargain is to learn and improve by, you guessed it...PRACTICING.
3- Self Discipline. Learning how to overcome the urge to do other things when we are supposed to be doing something else is a valuable lifelong lesson.
4- Patience. Learning to play an instrument takes slow, steady progress. Learning to read music is like learning another language which takes time and patience -yet another lifelong skill.
5- Perseverance. We live in a world of instant gratification and so many kids (my own included) get frustrated quickly when something doesn't come easily to them and they want to give up. It's only by pushing through and sticking with it that we learn our true abilities.
Us teachers know when our students practice and we usually can tell how much, regardless of what they say. Most fess up when they don't practice and you would not believe the excuses I've heard. Sometimes, I have to look away because I almost laugh out loud. Some act very sorry for not practicing. It does not hurt my feelings. I'm here to help them learn and it's up to them to take that information and practice it in order to master it. (That's part of accountability. See number 2 above). I've also witnessed the satisfied, proud looks on their faces when they see results from their regular practicing. It's priceless to me.
Our Spring Recital will be in May. Recitals are necessary for many reasons, not the least of which is providing a deadline. Deadlines are a great motivator. Unfortunately, some students who do not practice much tend to panic as the day gets closer. They try to cram in two months worth of practice in a few days but, unfortunately, it won't work for two reasons:
1- Much like trying to lose 50 pounds in a week, it's not humanly possible.
2-Feeling prepared gives us a certain level of confidence so if we know we didn't prepare well, then our minds may go to all sorts of worst case scenarios and this sabotages our efforts.
So, I encourage parents to get involved by setting up a regular practice schedule this month so that by the time recital day arrives, students feel prepared and confident. Please reach out to your child's teacher if you have questions or concerns about what they should be working on.
As always, thank you so much for allowing us the opportunity to be a part of your child's musical journey.