About The HeyKiki Team

HeyKiki.com is a search and discovery engine in the Education and Activity (Class/Tutoring) Space that connects users with trusted, local instructors and practice partners for a variety of interests. We want to get people out of their ordinary routines, meet like-minded people and be more active. HeyKiki allows to connect online so they can actually meet off-line. It's simple...LEARN, PRACTICE, TEACH!

Why You Should Do Yoga

Guest Post by SMARTer Bodies

smarter bodies

SMARTer Bodies

This isn’t about telling you that you should be devoting your entire life to yoga. This is about us sharing with you the real benefits of what a yoga practice can be.  Let’s be clear.  Yoga is NOT a complete system of total health and well-being.  Despite the fact that’s the exact message that is sold to the masses.  When you hear that, remember this…Nothing is a complete system of total health and well-being. So, if you’ve already been told that yoga is not going to be the magical pill that cures all, then why do it? While a miracle solution like that doesn’t exist, yoga can be the gateway through which you better connect to your physical body, mental body and emotional body.  Yoga can be a process by which you re-establish a relationship with yourself that can better guide you to a place of total health and well-being.

As yoga teachers, we have strong, dedicated practices that we use not only for our own wellness but as the system we rely on most when helping our private clients who come to us with a variety of issues ranging from the small to the very serious.  Why?  So many of the problems we see can be easily managed and even completely resolved when clients learn to cultivate awareness of their physiological processes and of their mental/emotional processes.  Once someone has been handed the keys to this refined and sharp awareness through the slow and methodical self-exploration that yoga allows for, injury prevention becomes easy. That is really what a conscious movement practice should be about. With our practice, you’ll gain a better knowledge of how you move, if you are over-exploiting any joints or muscles, if you are breathing as well as you could be, and how to get your body and self on the same page.  Once you start this practice the idea of injury prevention can be applied to every area of your life.

Awareness of the self, even when it starts from a purely physical place, can help prevent injury or damage to your physical life, your personal relationships, your work, and your psychological wellness.  So if you’re an athlete looking to better your performance, a mother who needs to get a better handle on stress, a young person who doesn’t know how to manage life so well, or an older person looking to revitalize his/her being, do yoga!  It won’t cure all that ails you, but it will help you to discover what you need.

Learn more about SMARTer Bodies’ Yoga Movement.

Music Teacher’s Helper Style – A Personal Secretary and Accountant

Guest Post by Music Teacher’s Helper

Music Teacher's Helper

Music Teacher’s Helper

 

Piano Teacher’s Dilemma:

 

I had eight Excel sheets, two Word documents, and three separate email drafts pulled up on my computer screen, and a major headache throbbing in my temples. Yearly studio planning day, you might ask? No, just my typical end of the week reckoning of accounts nightmare. I was a high school senior with nine piano students. When people asked me where I worked, I was tempted to say, “I’m the CEO, Administrative Assistant to the CEO, and the General Accounting Manager of Alissa’s Piano Studio,” but instead I called myself a private music teacher and tried to ignore the fact that the average time I spent
managing the business side of my small music studio easily doubled my teaching time every week. Like the tortured artist who cries, “Why can’t I just create?” my cry was, “Why can’t I just teach?”

Piano Teacher’s Solution:

While in college, I discovered a solution to my dilemma. I hired a helper for my studio—the Music Teacher’s Helper to be precise. This is an online private music studio management program that allows music teachers to step down from their secretarial and accounting duties and truly focus on teaching. It takes care of every aspect of a private music studio including student information, scheduling, finances, billing, and much more. It would take forever to list all the features it includes—I’m still discovering them all –but I will briefly describe some of my favorite features.

Favorite Features

1. It’s free for the first 5 students. This was great when I was first exploring the program to see if it would really work for me. I would encourage you to use the program for free with just a couple students for the first month. Then once you’ve figured everything out it is easy to upgrade.

2. Automatic invoicing. There is nothing I hate worse than having to ask people for money. The Music Teacher’s Helper allows you to have invoices automatically emailed to the parents of your students every month so they always know how much they owe and you never have to ask for money again. Also, the invoices can be customized with your studio logo and look really professional.

3. All the information is in one place. My studio calendar, student information, studio expenses, list of payments received, etc., etc. is all nicely organized in one program. It streamlines the whole process instead of using multiple programs and having miscellaneous files saved all over your computer.

4. It’s online. Since I teach outside of my home, it is great to be able to access all my studio information from any computer with my online login code.

5. Free studio website. This program really does include EVERYTHING!!! Not only does it take care of the business side of the studio, but it even helps with advertising. The website layouts are really professional looking and are easy to customize. And again, it’s all part of the same program, so right after you put something on the calendar, it’s just a click away to add a studio announcement to your website.

6. Great tutorials. I’m not the most tech savvy person on earth, but there is a video tutorial for every single aspect of the Music Teacher’s Helper. They are short and simple and make the process of learning how to use the program so much simpler.

Go Hire Your Own “Helper”

For all my fellow music teachers who are tired of trying to be the secretary, accountant, and teacher in their music studio, I would strongly recommend the Music Teacher’s Helper. Inexpensive and really easy to use, it is an invaluable resource. But don’t take my word for it—go to http://www.musicteachershelper.com to see for yourself.

Alissa Passburg, Piano Teacher

 

History of the Modern Piano: Infographic

History of the Modern Piano Infographic

History of the Modern Piano Infographic
[Click to Enlarge]

 We hope you enjoy HeyKiki’s visual representation: History of the Modern Piano.

To add this infographic to your website or blog, simply copy the code below and paste it into the HTML of your website or blog:

<a href="http://www.heykiki.com/blog/?p=5203" target="_blank"><img src="http://www.heykiki.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/History-of-the-Modern-Piano-Infographic-791x1024.png" alt="" /></a><br><a href="http://heykiki.com" target="_blank">Find Local Piano Instructors</a> on HeyKiki.com

Music: A Language of Learning

by Guest Blogger: Liz Torres (Broadway Producer/Actor/Singer and Student of Grace Music Studio)

Founder Julia Amisano teaching piano

Founder Julia Amisano
teaching piano

The story of your brain on music is the story of an exquisite orchestration of brain regions, involving both the oldest and newest parts of the human brain, and regions as far apart as the cerebellum in the back of the head and the frontal lobes just behind your eyes.

— Daniel J. Levitin,

This Is Your Brain On Music 

            It isn’t an optimistic attempt to promote music education anymore. Slowly but surely, it has become common knowledge: music aids learning.  According to Angela Hampton, in her very informative article,  A Cognitive Crescendo – How Music Affects the Brain,  “musical involvement activates more areas of the brain than any other activity.  The right brain is involved in the experiential aspects; the left brain is involved with the analytical, structural elements of music; the limbic system controls the emotional response to music.”

So, bring on the piano lessons, right?

Right! In fact, HeyKiki’s John Surico brought up a wonderful experiment done by the University of California on his latest guest post to our studio blog, “How Playing Piano Can Be Educational Too”! In this experiment, “A neurologists’ survey was done with 237 students in the 2nd grade.  One group of students learned how to play piano while the other group learned software that taught mathematics. After the test was conducted, the kids that knew how to play the ivory or keyboard scored 27% higher on their math tests than the computer-attached students.”

So, how to get started… here at Grace Music Studios, a significant portion of out student base are children – and teaching children music theory can sometimes be tricky. – especially if they want to play they’re favorite songs after the first lesson! GMS founder and author of Music Theory: Grade 1, Julia Amisano, speaks about her experience on the matter:

To my surprise,  when I asked two of my young students (both aged 7) what they liked best about Music Theory Grade 1, they both had the same answer; the quizzes! When I further inquired as to why they liked the quizzes, one student said ‘because I get to feel like I win, if I get the answers right’. It occurred to me that this is what we all want. We want to learn slowly, but not so slowly we become bored, and we want opportunities to show off what we know. I said to my student “you said it kiddo”.

            Which brings us to the conclusion of what communities like Heykiki and Grace Music Studios knew all along – we NEED music education. It plays an important part in cultural identity, development, confidence and social skills. I personally have been studying with Julia for over a year, and have noticed extreme growth in speed with regards to my ability to retain information and execute technique with my singing. I encourage parents to take the initiative and enroll their children in programs like Grace Music Studios or research websites like HeyKiki.com and take the leap. Hey, and it isn’t for children alone – start taking lessons yourself – your brain will be happy you did.

Grace Music Studios is a private voice, piano, drums, and acting school in Park Slope, Brooklyn, New York. GMS’s mission in music and singing is threefold: to empower the individual to discover their authentic selves, to build a local community that encourages that individual growth, and to influence and inspire those individuals to serve the greater community.  For more of GMS resources, tips, events or to simply ask questions – you can visit us on our HeyKiki page or our Facebook page and/or follow us at @GraceMusicNY on twitter!

 

This Mother’s Day, Do Something Special With Your Mom

Every Mother’s Day, we do the same old things for our moms: we buy them flowers, we take them out for brunches, or if we live far away, maybe we just send them cards with chocolates. At a certain point, these cute acts stop being as meaningful as they once were and start to feel hollow.

That’s why this Mother’s Day, we’re proposing something new — instead of buying something for your mom, do something with her. We think that one of the cutest things that you could do would be to find a new mutual hobby. Whether you try yoga, skiing, knitting, or baking, we’re sure that there’s something that the two of you could share.

Here are a few of our favorite ideas for classes to take on Mother’s Day:

Yoga Classes – At any age, yoga is a great way to stay fit and healthy. Whether you’re new to yoga or you’ve been doing it for years, a yoga class would be a relaxing way to spend a day together. Afterwards, the two of you could catch up over tea.

Cooking ClassesWe’re not suggesting that your mom’s cooking isn’t the best thing on the planet. We’re just saying that a cooking class is a great way to spend quality time together and eat a delicious meal. Try taking a class on the food of another culture like Indian or Thai food. A cooking class with mom would be a great way to expand your palettes and learn something new in a comfortable and fun environment.

Dance ClassesThere are tons of great Mother’s Day themed dance classes. Why not take your mom out for an afternoon of sangria and salsa dancing or tango? If you find that you love going out dancing together, this could turn into a monthly event!

This year, skip on the cards and flowers and instead spend some time with your mom. Have a great Mother’s Day!