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Transfer Students Read Me

A transfer student is one who has previously taken lessons, regardless of duration or any breaks in instruction. Transfer students make up a large portion of the student body at Kansas City School of Music. 

Students interested in transferring to Kansas City School of Music should read Admission Requirements. In addition, transfer students will likely be asked to show previous books used, demonstrate playing ability, and describe why they are looking for a new teacher.

At Kansas City School of Music we have very high standards for both teachers and students. We want to make sure that all foundational elements are present in the student’s knowledge and playing abilities before proceeding to more difficult areas. Because of this, there is a possibility that the teacher might spend some time reviewing and filling in gaps in knowledge and playing ability to ensure all areas are covered. Doing this will save time and frustration in the future. The decisions our teachers make are always in the best interest of the student.

Getting Started: Parental Involvement

Success at the piano requires not only a commitment from the student, but a huge commitment on the part of the parent. For preschool and elementary students, parents are required to sit in on lessons, take meticulous notes, and practice with their child at home. This system ensures that the child is practicing correctly, and helps the child become motivated in learning the instrument. Once the student becomes capable of independent practice, parents are encouraged to continue observing and taking notes at lessons.

Taking Notes

Detailed note-taking is imperative for the parent’s complete understanding of the content presented, and it enables the parent to replicate the principals conveyed at lessons. Taking detailed notes maximizes efficiency at the lesson. If the teacher takes notes, the student loses at least five minutes of valuable lesson time. Parents are expected to have a full-sized spiral notebook devoted to piano lessons. Typically, the notes from each lesson will fill a full page. In addition to the parent’s copious notes, the teacher may also address the parent with specific items to be written down. The weekly lesson is not intended solely for the child’s instruction, but also for the teacher to instruct the parent how to assist the child at home.

Practice at Home

The weekly piano lesson is the model for practice at home. Activities and methods presented at the lesson should be recreated during daily practice. The sense of teamwork is a great motivation because of the praise and encouragement that a parent can provide for the student.

Once a student is capable of independent practice, the parent is still expected to monitor practice on a regular basis.

Parent/Teacher Interaction

During the Lesson

It is very important that the parent does not correct the child during the lesson, or answer questions directed to the child. The parent is welcome to address the instructor with questions, but should refrain from interacting with the student or teacher in any manner that undermines the teacher’s authority or in any other way detracts from the lesson.

Outside the Lesson

Parents should feel free to communicate with the instructor between lessons regarding any issues that concern them. It is better to solve problems immediately rather than waiting for the next lesson.

Which Parent?

The parent who accompanies the child to the lesson needs to be the one involved daily with the student’s practice at home. The most important factor is not which parent has the most musical talent or experience, but rather, which parent is the most available to help with the student’s daily practice.

Expectations for Piano Lessons


Students are expected to arrive on time for their lesson. Lessons missed by the student because of illness or emergency will be rescheduled at a mutually agreeable time. In the case of illness, if the school is not notified before the scheduled lesson time, the lesson will be forfeited.  In the case of vacations, a maximum of 3 makeup lessons will be allowed and the teacher must be given at least 7 days prior notice.  Lessons missed by the student for any other reason are forfeited. However, the teacher may occasionally make up other lessons missed by the student if sufficient notice is given and if the privilege is not abused. All such make-up lessons are at the sole discretion of the student’s teacher.

Parental Involvement

  • For younger students, parents are expected to observe the lesson. This includes taking copious notes so that they may help their child with practice throughout the week. This will ensure the steady progress of the lessons.
  • Parents are also expected to help their young child practice at home. The teacher will remain in close contact with the parent and communicate when this is no longer necessary.
  • Parents are encouraged to get involved with their child’s piano lessons, regardless of their age.
  • More details on parental involvement


  • Consistent practice is expected of each student. It is often best to schedule practice time and make it part of the daily routine. If regular practice is not maintained, Kansas City School of Music reserves the right to discontinue lessons.
  • The parent is responsible for the child’s high quality practice 45 minutes per day, seven days per week.
  • A well-maintained piano to practice on at home is very important, especially as the student advances.
  • Electronic keyboards are unacceptable as the primary practice instrument. However, an 88-key digital piano with fully weighted keys is acceptable for the first year of private piano instruction.
  • The piano should be in an area free of distractions
  • Bench height and distance should be adjusted appropriately as discussed in lessons.
  • If the student’s feet do not touch the floor, a stool or box should be placed so that the feet are stabilized.

Lesson Behavior/Expectations

  • Nails are to be kept trimmed.
  • No food, gum, or drink (except water) is allowed into the lesson.
  • Parents are expected to support the teacher when student behavior is inappropriate.
  • Disrespect for the teacher will not be tolerated.


  • Students are expected to purchase books and materials promptly. Failure to do so will affect the progress of the lessons.

Voice Lessons

Voice students at the Kansas City School of Music receive comprehensive instruction from our exceptional faculty. We accept children and adults of all ability levels. Lessons are tailored to fit each student’s needs. In addition, instructors guide students through the use of a comprehensive vocal curriculum developed by our voice faculty. Our students don’t just sing; they excel at it.

Advantages to Voice Study at Kansas City School of Music

    • Master Teachers
      There’s no understating the importance of having a great voice instructor to teach your child. Our voice instructors at Kansas City School of Music don’t just teach the fundamentals, they help their students realize purpose through musical expression and create a lifelong love of learning. Each of our voice instructors has extensive experience in music education and performance as well as a passion to pass a love of music on to a new generation of talented students. View our instructors’ biographies below.


    • Performance Opportunities
      Performing is a crucial part of the learning process when it comes to music. At Kansas City School of Music, we offer a wealth of opportunities for your children to perform in a professional setting. Visit our calendar page to see what upcoming events we have going on.


    • Exceptional Facilities
      The quality of facility won’t necessarily impede your child’s ability to learn music, but it can certainly make it more enjoyable. Kansas City School of Music has two locations for your convenience: our Lenexa campus and our Overland Park campus. Both of our state-of-the-art facilities have large and spacious practice rooms, soundproof walls, temperature control, and much more. All of this contributes to our high standard of excellence and allows your student to focus on mastering their musical talents.


    • Successful Singing
      Becoming a successful vocalist depends on your child’s ability to master the fundamentals. The goal of our voice instructors is to establish these fundamentals and ensure that your student is ready to practice on their own. We also have a heavy emphasis on vocal health and parent interaction. Breathing, phonation, resonance, versatility, diction, and musicianship will all be taught and mastered through our voice lessons. Additionally, parents are encouraged to get involved in their students learning. Whether it’s sitting in on lessons or assisting them with practice at home.


    • Voice Lessons for Young Children
      Many parents are under the impression that they shouldn’t start their children with voice lessons too early. However, young children between the ages of 5 and 13 can see enormous benefits from voice lessons, especially from a great voice instructor. Our teachers will create a custom plan for them based on their age and ability level. If you have any questions about our voice instructors or voice lessons, please contact Kansas City School of Music today.



Piano Lessons

Piano students at the Kansas City School of Music receive comprehensive instruction from our exceptional faculty. We accept children and adults of all ability levels. Piano lessons are tailored to fit each student’s needs. In addition, instructors guide students through the use of a comprehensive piano curriculum developed by our piano faculty. Our students don’t just play piano; they excel at it.

Advantages to Piano Lessons at Kansas City School of Music

    • Comprehensive Piano Curriculum

      At Kansas City School of Music, our piano lessons are designed to train our students in every aspect of the instrument and develop a solid musical foundation. Our piano instructors follow a standardized curriculum. However, instruction will be adjusted based on the strengths and weaknesses of your student’s playing abilities.

    • Master Teachers

      Every great music school starts with experienced music instructors who are looking to make a difference in the lives of their students. Each one of our piano instructors has degrees in music performance and has extensive experience in music education. If you’d like to learn more about each of our piano instructors, you can view their biographies below.

    • Performance Opportunities

      Performing is a key part of learning an instrument. At Kansas City School of Music, we offer ample opportunities for our students to perform. Additionally, students systematically progress through 24 levels of curriculum ranging from beginner through advanced, and must pass an exam at each level. These exams will ensure that they are confident and prepared going into each performance.

    • Exceptional Facilities

      The quality of facility won’t make or break a student’s ability to learn an instrument per se, but it can certainly make it more enjoyable. At Kansas City School of Music, we have two locations for your convenience: our Lenexa campus and our Overland Park campus. Each facility has soundproof walls, temperature control, and professional quality instruments including both digital and acoustic pianos. Our state-of-the-art facilities are just a small part of our standards of excellence.

    • Keyboard Ensembles

      Our keyboard ensembles offer a great way for students to learn in a group setting and take on new challenges that they can’t do practicing on their own. We create ensembles based on the students’ age and ability level so that everyone has the opportunity to learn and grow as a musician.

    • Parental Involvement

      As a parent, you’re probably looking for any way you can to get involved. Our piano instructors here at Kansas City School of Music are happy to offer you advice and guidance for getting involved with your child’s music education. We require parents to sit in on lessons if their student is in preschool or elementary school because we believe parental involvement is crucial during this stage of musicianship. Visit our parental involvement page to learn more about this.


Keyboard Ensemble

The keyboard ensemble is an opportunity for students to come together and form rock bands, jazz ensembles, and orchestras through the use of our state-of-the-art digital pianos. Students learn the basics of ensemble playing while performing music that is entertaining and challenging. Groups are formed according to students’ age and ability level. Individual parts are prepared at home and in the lessons, and then rehearsed as an ensemble in our keyboard lab. While rehearsing, students will have the opportunity to simulate various instruments. For example, one student may play a guitar sound on his keyboard, while other students play drums, saxophone, violin, and other sounds.

Our ensemble groups perform twice a year at our Christmas and Spring Ensemble Concerts.  Students must be enrolled in lessons in order to participate in an ensemble.