MODE OF INSTRUCTION
We realize that the commitment needed to give any child or young adult a music education is quite considerable, and we provide a variety of programs to help ease this burden. Regardless of your resources or situation, we are confident we have an enrollment option that meets all of your expectations and a payment plan that remains within your means. To help you decide what is best for you we even provide a free consultation with no obligation to enroll. (Please consult the specific programs for additional details, especially with regard to courses and the Young Artist Program).
Private Instruction: Lessons are offered in the areas of: piano, voice, violin, viola, cello, bass, flute, recorder, saxophone, guitar, banjo, electric bass, drums, organ and composition. All private instruction coordinates technique, theory, history and performance to develop well-round musicianship. The student may choose from a variety of lesson lengths and frequencies according to his/her goals and means.
Team Teaching Approach: Traditionally, music lessons used to consist of weekly timed instruction sessions, usually 30 minutes, 45 minutes or an hour in length, where the teacher worked with the student one-on-one and the lesson fee was a flat hourly rate. All instruction would take place in this once-a-week lesson and the student was expected to practice several hours daily during the remainder of the week in preparation for the next lesson.
As a modification to this out-dated method, the Kikuchi Music Institute employs a team teaching approach where a teaching assistant helps to maximize the lesson time in three important ways: 1) by facilitating the transition time between lessons; 2) by coaching the student at the beginning of the lesson; and 3) by assisting the primary teacher during the lesson.
The teaching assistant greets the incoming student, gets the student “warmed-up” and reviews the assignments made at the previous lesson: scales, exercises, etc. It is the musical equivalent of checking a student’s homework. Then, the primary lesson begins with the assistant present, who can grade written assignments and assist in other ways during the lesson, until the next student arrives.
The result is that each student receives continuous instruction, without time lost to interruptions, grading assignments, writing instructions, answering phone calls or greeting students. This pedagogical innovation alone maximizes your tuition dollar well beyond anything available elsewhere in the music education world.
Secondary Instrument: Students may enroll in private instruction on a secondary instrument, and both may be taught as part of the same lesson (or separated if desired). All areas offered for primary instruction are also available as secondary. However, instruction in recorder is available as primary and secondary for students under age 12, but is available only as a secondary for students ages 12 and older; and voice is offered as a secondary to students under age 12 in which case the primary instrument must always be piano.
Course Work: Students who have completed the Core Curriculum will proceed to either the Young Artist Program or Music Appreciation Program. In this program, they will take special additional classes in Music Theory, Ear Training, or Musicology at no additional charge. If three or more students enroll in the same term, course work is taught in a weekly 60 min. class room setting. If not, students are given the additional instruction as an extra 15 min. private study in conjunction with their lessons.
Evaluation: Students require regular evaluation to provide adequate feedback regarding their progress. Many professional organizations provide programmed evaluations for young musicians. They are conducted by outside teachers, and they grade the students against a syllabus or standards guideline. All KMI piano students are required to participate in the Pittsburgh Piano Teachers Association (PPTA) Evaluations (in May each year). Students of other instruments will be required to participate in similar evaluations programs as the KMI faculty become aware of them, and take the necessary steps to make our students eligible for participation.
Performance: Regular performance is important to any music student, both to prove the student's progress and improve the student's overall ability to perform. KMI hosts two recitals annually, and regularly submits students to other recitals and performing opportunities.
Recorder/Flute: The recorder is taught primarily as a beginning student instrument, and is usually considered a starter for another woodwind instrument such as flute, clarinet, oboe or bassoon. Students ages 9 and younger whose hands are not big enough to hold a flute are encouraged to start with recorder first. The recorder is also an ideal instrument to start the very young before deciding on another primary instrument, because of its low cost ($20), transportability and ease to play.
CLICK FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION ON OUR PROGRAMS:
Academic Policies: Further details on the above descriptions.
Core Curriculum: The starting point for all beginning music students.
Music Together : Special classes for children 9 months to 5 years old.
Pre-School Piano Program: Special lessons for children ages 4-6.
Adult Music Lessons: KMI accepts students of ALL ages. It is never too late to start!