Policies & Procedures
The Amanda Cooley Piano Studio has been serving the greater Brandon community for 10 years! The studio is located in Bloomingdale East, in Valrico, FL. Address and directions given upon request. Parents are welcome and encouraged to sit in on lessons.
Schedule & Availability
Current teaching hours are Monday through Friday, 2:00-8:00 pm, as well as some mornings open for adult students, virtual students in other time zones and children who are home-schooled. To start, each lesson lasts a half hour. Once we find a day and time that works for both teacher and student, I like to stick with that date and time for as long as possible. This way the student has an equal amount of time between lessons to practice and improve. However, make-up lessons can be given if you let me know in advance that you need to change the date/time for a particular week. Current availability varies, so if you’d like to know what’s available right now, send me a New Student Inquiry Form. (insert link)
I have a BM in Piano Performance from the University of Florida, so I have been classically trained and of course classical training is a big part of my teaching approach. However, just reading by note is only one piece of the puzzle. My teaching approach begins with learning to read by note, by chord symbol AND by ear, all from the very beginning. This system is especially ideal for kids, because within a few months they can begin to choose their own music—music that they know and love! Learning to read and play by chord symbol allows the student to learn how to improvise and create their own arrangements, as does playing by ear. Studying all three disciplines creates a very well-rounded musician who can feel comfortable sitting down at the piano in any setting and playing in virtually any style.
The tuition for piano lessons is $90.00 a month for weekly, half-hour, one-on-one piano lessons. I do have some advanced students who are enrolled in weekly hour lessons, and the charge for this is $160.00 per month. (Auditions required.) This is an annualized fee, which means you are paying for each year of piano lessons in monthly installments. This includes the understanding that the number of lessons you have each month will vary depending on the calendar, holidays, etc. I will teach every day except some national holidays, public school’s Thanksgiving, winter and spring breaks and two weeks’ vacation. Some months you will have five lessons, sometimes four, three or two. Throughout the year you will average four lessons per month.
One-On-One Virtual Lessons
For those of you who do not live in the Valrico, FL area, I teach virtual lessons with the use of a tablet or computer and either the app FaceTime, Skype or Google Hangouts. link to-More information about virtual lessons.
Piano recitals are held in late spring, and participation is highly recommended as a wonderful growth experience. Performing is an integral part of learning to play the piano, and I encourage the students to perform anywhere and everywhere they can: at school, church, friends’ houses, for family, etc. The spring recital is a great place to practice performance in a more formal setting, and each year brings new surprises! Virtual students can perform as well; we have the technology!
Rental Keyboard Service: Supplies Limited!
If you do not already have a piano or keyboard in your home, I am happy to offer a loaner-keyboard service for beginning students. I understand that if your child has never had lessons or a piano before, you may feel some hesitancy about purchasing some big, expensive instrument or keyboard when you're not sure if your child will indeed stick with playing the piano. For this reason, I keep a number of beginner keyboards in my home, and I'm happy to loan one out to you for a few months while you see if it's something he or she is going to enjoy. (The keyboards are truly beginner instruments, you wouldn't want to keep using it for more than about 4-5 months before purchasing an upgrade, but in that time, you will certainly be able to see if your child enjoys it!) The fee for this is $10 per month, which is paid along with your tuition every month, and then I do also take a $100 check deposit from you for the keyboard, but that money will be returned to you as long as you eventually return the keyboard to me. Inquire about availability on the New Student Inquiry form.