We Believe that Anyone Can Learn the Piano with the Right Teaching and Community
South Shore Piano School is different from traditional community music schools. We don't sell you dreams of easy fun. We don't only teach piece after piece. Why? Because we know this never works out for our students in the long run. We teach you time-tested skills for lifelong music making. and provide the supportive environment to achieve it. All while enjoying the process and having fun along the way.
The Skill-Building Mindset
Building skills rather than just learning piece after piece will lead to life-long music making.
A Truly Qualified Teacher
We invest substantially in our teachers in order to provide the clearest path possible for your music journey.
A Community Like Family
A supportive community is necessary for any lifelong pursuit. Our many events provide just that.
After over 100 years of collective teaching experience, we have found that these three principles are at the core of what separates students who learn to play the piano for life and those who try it for a couple of years and decide it's not for them.
The Skill-Building Mindset
Mia, nine years old, loved the idea of learning the piano when she first started, but was on the verge of quitting when her parents brought her to us. After a number of years of lessons, learning new pieces of music became more and more frustrating. The joy was disappearing.
As it turned out, Mia was learning with an approach that only focused on repertoire (fancy word for "pieces of music"). It was not working for her anymore. She was simply learning piece after piece of music by rote. Her reading skills were very far behind the music she had been working on. It was like trying to read French without knowing the alphabet, and Mia was at her breaking point.
At SSPS, we changed this appraoch and focused on building Mia's ability to read and understand music. While the difficulty of the music had to be changed to a more appropriate level, the excitement of understanding what was on the page brought Mia's enthusiasm for the piano back to life.
Mia is now pursuing the piano with more passion than ever. She is now on a path to enjoying music for a lifetime.
At the South Shore Piano School, we want our students to learn and truly understand the language of music. We accomplish this with a skill-building approach to our teaching. These skills include:
- Music reading
- Music theory ("theory" is to music as "grammar" is to language)
- Ear training
- How to start learning a brand new piece of music successfully
- Maintaining a consistent practice routine that works
- Staying motivated through the inevitable tough times
With this approach, eventually our students will not need us anymore. They will have the tools to learn, create, and enjoy music for the rest of their lives.
A Truly Qualified Teacher
When Liam (eleven years old) came to us, he had been with three different teachers over a span of three years at another community music school. The variation of teaching appraoches left Liam and his parents confused.
Liam's first teacher taught with a balance of technique, music theory, and repertoire at his level. But, this teacher left after a year to go to graduate school.
Liam's second teacher focused completely on repertoire. This teacher also left after a year to pursue his performing career.
Liam's third teacher's approach was unclear and communication with Liam's parents was minimal.
This was when Liam's parents decided to give SSPS a try. With a qualified teacher who wasn't planning on leaving, Liam's path to a successful musical experience became clear. Regular communication with his parents completely eliminated the guesswork. Liam is enjoying the piano better than ever. The confusion is gone.
We have all taught at other community music schools where the organization's "bottom line" was the priority; certainly more so than teacher pay and maintaining standards of teaching.
As a result, regular teacher turnover has become normalized. It has become harder and harder in recent years for these schools to find qualified, experienced teachers who are willing to stay for more than a year or two.
The saddest aspect of this is that the students are the ones who suffer. With each change in teacher and approach, there is a chance that the excitement will end. And when a student loses the possibility of learning music, especially as a child, that is a tragedy to us all.
At the South Shore Piano School, we are turning this trend around. By taking a people-first approach with our organization, over 90% of tuition goes directly to teacher pay and benefits. As a result, we are able to pay our teachers roughly 50% higher and offer better benefits than other community music schools in the area.
By taking this approach, we are able to attract and retain the very best, most experienced teachers. And, they will be here for the length of your piano studies.
Aside from being college-educated, our teachers:
- have a track record of successful piano teaching with a variety of ages and levels.
- believe in a skill-building approach to teaching music.
- are passionate about their careers as piano teachers.
- are excellent communicators.
- are up-to-date on the latest trends and research in the field of piano pedagogy.
- are some of the nicest people you will have the pleasure of meeting.
At the South Shore Piano School, you can have the confidence that your tuition dollars are going towards acquiring the best instruction that you can possibly find.
A Community Like Family
Evelyn (twelve years old) had been taking piano lessons at a local music store for a couple of years. But, something was missing.
While she enjoyed lessons with her teacher, it felt like she was the only person she knew taking piano lessons. All of her music friends were in the school band or orchestra, neither of which included the piano.
Of course, there was the annual end-of-year recital. But, this was only once a year. And, it seemed like she didn't see many of the same students from one year to the next.
Seeing this, Evelyn's parents decided to try lessons at SSPS. Things changed quickly.
Recitals went from once a year to once a month. Sometimes, even more often than that. As she got to perform more, she started seeing other students more regularly.
Soon, Evelyn started forming friendships with these students. She even got to perform four-hand duets with some of her new friends. She had never played in a piano ensemble before.
Evelyn did not feel like she was on a piano island anymore. She now had piano friends. And she was excited to have this musical community for her adventures ahead.
At the South Shore Piano School, we know that a sense of community is essential to any major endeavor. Otherwise, the adventure becomes quite lonely.
As such, we hold regular events for our students at a much higher rate than most other schools and studios. These events include:
- multiple student recitals every month that are open to the public.
- weekly student workshops.
- social events.
- school-wide practice challenges.
- Suzuki groups.
- summer piano camp.
...and we are always brainstorming about new, exciting events for our students.
With regular events like these, students feel like they are part of something bigger than themselves. They have the support and develop the friendships they need to continue learning and making music for the rest of their lives.
Start Your Journey Today
If you're ready to see all that piano lessons can bring to your life, come see us for a free trial lesson. All you need to do is click the button below to get started. We hope to see you soon!