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Shirley S Kirsten

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Long Distance Internet-based Piano Teaching: A novel experience
by Shirley S Kirsten   
Rated "G" by the Author.
Last edited: Monday, July 11, 2011
Posted: Monday, July 11, 2011

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Shirley S Kirsten

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As a prelude to Skyping, I plunged into a long distance video exchange with a student from Oregon.

I haven't yet jumped onto the big Mac Screen in real-time, seated amidst two tripods and three pianos with a pair of earphones. Instead I took an assignment sharing videos back and forth with a piano student in another state. (We have a privately arranged You Tube Channel for our exchange)

It appears to be a productive musical relationship thus far that's yielded some significant improvement from a 10-year old pupil smiling at me from her seat at her brand new grand piano.

I can't help but think that SKYPING is around the corner. The I mac 21 and 1/2 that I just acquired is center stage and there's no longer a clear path to the kitchen without tripping over the spaghetti strings of Ethernet C5 cables. I have two other computers tied up with wires (one upstairs) because I don't like the radiation factor with Wi-fi regardless of what anyone tells me about non-existent health risks. (Maybe I should toss out the wireless mouse that came with the Mac) At least I haven't gone overboard obsessing about a potential earthquake calamity while SKYPING. Besides, to be honest, Fresno has no "fault," though we had a pretty big aftershock when Coalinga and its crickets were blasted out of anonymity. (See Blog, Clementi and the Crickets)

I'm more at risk for a nature-related catastrophe in the Bay area, but who cares? I wouldn't mind going out in a nice ambiance, with a pleasing climate.

Back to long distance Internet-generated piano teaching.

This prelude to Skyping is a nice fit. The student can watch the tutorials endlessly and refine her practicing even if I'm not within earshot. And my sending responses to her videos, provides a nice tempo of interchange. I can keep a record of the videos, review them, refine some of my ideas, and shoot back others marking specific remediation to problem areas.

Skyping, phase two of this out-of-town engagement, will be interesting to assess. With an open mind, I'll be entering journal notes as I move along.

For now, I'll cast my vote for the video exchange, or best case scenario, a combination of both virtual experiences. Stay tuned.


Feedback from Skypers is always appreciated.

Web Site: Journal of a Piano Teacher from NY to CA

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