Student Resources


We do not own or rent instruments for students at NEMPAC, but linked here is a guide to instrument rental and purchases.  If you have further questions please reach out to Private Music Instruction Manager, Mary-Alexandra Onstad at

Class Programming:

• Music – Kids Piano Discovery

• Dance & Movement – First Steps

• Dance & Movement – Creative Dance and Movement: Ballet, Young Dancers: Ballet & Jazz, Chorus Liners: Ballet & Jazz

• Dance & Movement – Creative Dance and Movement: Ballet & Tap, Young Dancers: Ballet & Tap, Chorus Liners: Tap

• Dance & Movement – Beginning Hip Hop Dance

Kids Piano Discovery

For both the 10-Week Session and 30-Week Session of Kids Piano Discovery, students will be working from “My First Piano Adventure” by Nancy Faber. You can purchase this book directly from the supplier or Amazon.

For the 30-Week Session of Kids Piano Discovery, students are required to have an instrument for at home practice. We suggest a 32-key electronic keyboard. These are battery operated and portable. 

Keyboard: Lexington, Kmise, Casio.

First Steps

Attire- Stretchy, moveable clothing. Many students will wear a ballet leotard and dance skirt, but it is not mandatory for this age. 

Shoes- Ballet shoes or anti-slip grip socks.

Resources for Online Lessons


In this guide, we will cover information for students who are already registered and signed up with the basics of online private lessons, how to join your online lessons, additional activities you and your child can do together, and a list of free or cheap online resources to keep music, theatre, and dance alive in your home.

Advantages of Online Lessons:

• No lugging instruments around, especially nice for large instruments.

• The online dynamic tends to make the time spent very focused.

• You can continue with your instructor even if you or they travel, or move, or if you live in more than one place. 

• You are very unlikely to catch an illness!

• Parents, for young students, are able to dial into lessons from a third location.

• It’s very easy to record the lessons

• Lesson recordings (and notes and attachments added to the lesson) are securely stored for you and the instructor to refer back to at any time.


  • Computer or tablet or phone with camera capabilities
  • Your Instrument
  • Webcam
  • Good Internet Connection



Zoom tends to be the most robust platform with the best sound quality.  It allows for screen sharing which can be helpful in looking at sheet music or videos together.  The desktop version also allows you to record your lesson to watch later. It is strongly recommended that you download the zoom app and set up a free account. You will need to adjust these advanced settings for optimal sound: disable both persistent and intermittent background noise.  This will allow both the instructor and student to hear each other more accurately.


This tends to be the second-best platform in terms of overall sound quality, but lacks some of the interactive features of zoom. It is only available on Apple products.

Skype and Google Hangouts

Sound quality not as good and both tend to glitch. These are best used as backup options if Zoom is experiencing high traffic.

Sound Trap

Free 30 day trial! This lets you record, assign homework, practice together, WHILE video chatting. Discuss with your instructor if this platform would work best for you. Ideal for intermediate to advanced students.


FOR VOICE STUDENTS – Free 30 day trial! You can change both the key and the tempo with this app as well as toggle the teach track on and off. As a voice student, it’s important to have recordings of accompaniment to work with your instructor online.


  1. Set up a time and day for your lesson, and set a rule for who will call who. Will the Instructor call the Student? Or will the student call the Instructor? Be timely with your dial-in!
  2. Make sure your devices are charged before the lesson! If the device starts to die mid-lesson, it not only knocks the flow of the lesson but can go unnoticed and accidentally cut the lesson short.
  3. Make sure you meet in the same location with high-speed internet each week (if possible)
  4. Good lighting is important on both sides.
  5. Find a quiet room where there are limited distractions – Parents – we advise that you are not in the room after the lesson starts unless the student is aged 7 and under.
  6. For piano lessons, angle the video camera, phone, or device at the side and down so the instructor can see the piano from the side and your student’s fingers, but make sure they can still see the students face! Instructors should see you, and students should see instructors!
    1. For other instruments (voice, violin, guitar, etc) angle the camera on both sides to make sure the student and the instrument are in clear view. We want to be able to see your face and middle to upper body. It is best to set the video conferencing device higher than the desk level. If you can safely prop it on a shelf or something similar that is ideal. You may need to prop the device with a book so the camera faces out and not up your nostrils or at the ceiling. We want to avoid this.