Resources for Music TeachersFree printables, recommended books, videos, courses, + tools
I’ve gathered many of the best resources on this site into this one page. I hope you find it helpful! Note: some of these links are affiliate links and may give me a small commission if you make a purchase. Enjoy! Andrew Ingkavet
Blank Sheet Music
These are all produced in our house style at the Musicolor Method, which has the look of jazz-style hand drawn clefs. We feel it’s more approachable for young learners. Print as many as you like!
Ideas for Use:
- Practice drawing whole notes in spaces first.
- Then try whole notes on lines
- Then half notes
- Then quarter notes
- Add some whole rests, half rests and eventually, the difficult quarter rest.
- A great exercise is to have your students copy just the hardest measure of a new piece they are working on.
- For Musicolor teachers, have your students use the proper color noteheads.
I spent 6 months interviewing private music teachers from all over the USA, Canada, Australia and Asia to figure out what is their biggest challenge. From this research, I created 3 short video lessons where I share my findings.
What You Will Learn:
- The most important thing every successful music teacher must do
- How to be found by people looking for a music teacher
- A weird trick about pricing
- Why most method books are terrible
- Why teaching a song is like eating a pie
- and so much more!
PRICE: FREE – Register Here
These are books that have changed many lives including my own. I hope you enjoy them!
- Made To Stick, Why Some Ideas Survive and Others Die by Chip and Dan Heath, – amazing! Great for teachers, marketers and parents alike. This is the first time I ever heard about the “curse of knowledge.”
- Outliers, The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell – you’ve heard of the 10,000 hour rule because of this book.
- Awaken The Giant Within, by Anthony Robbins – this was Tony’s second book and though I was moved greatly by his first, Unlimited Power, I think this one is better organized and written. If you follow these ideas, there’s no way you will not improve your life.
- The 7 Habits Of Highly Effective People, Powerful Habits In Personal Change by Dr. Steven Covey – so clear, simple and profound. “Sharpen the saw” is one of the greatest ideas from this book.
- Music Mind Games – Michiko Yurko has a lot of ideas in this huge book. I adapted some of her words into my rhythm fruit cards. See below.
- The Game Of Practice with 53 Tips To Make Practice Fun – by me! I give this to my own students and parents. 5 star reviews at Amazon. Here’s what one reader said, “I really like the author’s easy & personal sharing of practical tips to encourage children to practice their instrument. I’m a music teacher who now incorporates playing duets with my students in their lesson. I’ve seen how this modeling encourages students with their playing. A great book for both teachers & parents!”
Piano Method Books
I start all my students using the Musicolor Method, regardless of age. It is the perfect way to ramp up to music knowledge as well as technique while actually gaining a repertoire of music they are playing. After a few months, I begin to introduce other method books to help transition from the last phase of the Musicolor Notation to reading on the staff without the aid of color.
I’ve tried so many method books over the years and there are things I like more about each one than others. None are perfect. Perhaps that’s another project I will tackle in the future?
- Piano Adventures – This is my current favorite. The Fabers have done very well with creating age-appropriate material and the lyrics are funny too! The melodies are much more interesting than some of the other method books.
- Alfred Basic Piano – I used this series for years, but found there were strange jumps in conceptual knowledge required and/or technique. It was like everything was going along at a nice even pace and then we jumped to a new level without any warning!
- Bastien Piano Basics – I do like the large graphic layout of this series. There’s a lot to like here, though I find the music not as interesting as Faber & Faber’s Piano Adventures.
- The Music Tree – I used this series for several years and while I love the concept of introducing the clefs and their associated notes, along with middle C, the songs were incredibly tiresome and my kids were bored. I still like the approach and use this in my theory teaching away from the instrument.
- Highlighter tape – translucent tape that can be applied and removed without damaging paper or keys.
- Colored tapes – these tapes are nice for more permanent uses.
- Scented Washable Colored markers – These markers are washable and are scented. My students love them especially when I use them to paint the nails of their fingers to match the keys of the piano or the frets of the guitar/ukulele.
- Metal music stand – You can’t go wrong with one of these. Get the best quality one you can afford as you’ll have it for life!
- Magnetic Whiteboard and markers – so fun for the kids. For some reason, every kid loves to write on a whiteboard.
- Foam rubber dice – I use these for a game called The Dice Game. It helps make practicing a repertoire much more fun!
Articles That Feature A Free Printable or Resource
Why Hold Recitals? If you don’t hold recitals, you’re missing a rare chance to separate yourself from the many other accomplished teachers out there. My studio ballooned after I held my first recital. So can yours. No Recitals = Students that Don’t Practice Here’s the...read more
Social creatures, us humans. But if you think words are enough, think again - body language and silence often tell you much more about a person. So, what does this mean for us teachers? Well, if you can’t read the nonverbal signs, it makes it very hard to help the...read more
Truly Scrumptious: “Haven’t you noticed? There aren’t any children. Not one.” In the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, based on a novel by Ian Fleming (with a script co-written by Roald Dahl), there is a land where children are banished. They are evil and are meant to...read more
“My child loves the lessons but just doesn’t want to practice.” It’s probably the number one challenge of every music teacher, parent, and music student: how to make practice part of a daily routine. For young preschoolers, this is something...read more
This is a good piece for early beginning pianists and will most likely be featured in my upcoming Volume 3 of Play Piano For Kids. The sheet music uses my color system which is basically a rainbow starting from C. You should download Play Piano For Kids, Volume 1 as...read more
The Beatles changed the world with their catchy pop melodies, excellent song structures and beautiful harmonies. This song is long a favorite for pianists, but playing it in the original key of C is quite difficult for most young singers who have the heart of their...read more
How to play Happy Birthday on the piano. This is a popular perennial request and I'm posting here for educational purposes only. Recently, the courts in the USA have declared this as public domain! Woo hoo! Enjoy! Download...read more