I teach piano lessons in the normal way: lots of attention to proper technique, learning how to read music, appreciating and even falling in love with the classical repertoire.
But I’m also a working musician, mostly in jazz and popular styles. This tends more toward learning by ear, which has proven to be just as rewarding for most students, so we work this way too.
Most students take weekly half-hour lessons from late August through early June, with occasional weeks off for holidays and vacations. Some take 45- or 60-minute lessons instead. About half my students take a few summer lessons as well.
Instead of a traditional recital, we have “Piano-Palooza” every May with a backing band of drums, bass, and guitar. This has been great fun, especially for students who enjoy arranging, improvising, and playing by ear.
In November and February, students are invited to test their classical skills by playing two written-out pieces from memory. We do both solos and duets. Constructive comments, along with points toward gold cups, are provided by “expert” guest teachers.