There was no existing piano method which began slowly and carefully enough for both kids and adult beginners. All the methods we examined either started too fast or assumed some kind of knowledge, experience or affinity with manipulating music symbols.
For the vast majority of children, this conventional type of piano method is a major obstacle.
I CAN READ MUSIC is the most understandable and fun introduction to reading piano music available for kids today. Click here for a detailed discussion of kids and starting to read music.
Includes 50 page illustrated song book with removable stickers.
Every book package order includes a copy of I CAN READ MUSIC.
Below is a sample page from I CAN READ MUSIC, where we acquaint the child with the "musical staff" (the five horizontal lines in the drawing below) before we start reading notes.
Leading children's music educator and Emmy Award winning composer John Aschenbrenner looked at the experience children had with reading music and created a system based on what children could actually do comfortably, having fun while they learn to read music.
Piano for kids should be fun, especially when it's time to read music.
The result is I CAN READ MUSIC, the piano book for kids that is easy to understand and enjoy.
Reading piano music is complex, but if you break it down into small graphic elements that kids can understand, it becomes a rather simple language.
Countless children have gotten the "idea" of reading music from this entertaining book, using familiar songs like TWINKLE TWINKLE, JINGLE BELLS and MARY HAD A LITTLE LAMB.
After starting with PIANO IS EASY, kids make an easy transition from playing piano "by number" to reading music.
In I CAN READ MUSIC, the steps necessary to understand reading piano music are broken down into groups of fun activities that kids will enjoy exploring.
After putting six stickers on the piano, as in the above diagram from I CAN READ MUSIC, kids are ready to start reading music!
Online Piano: Try the Stickers
Use the above keyboard to play with the white keys and the stickers, using your mouse to click on the keys (the black keys work, too.) The key with the red sticker is Middle C, and the blue stickers represent the five lines of the staff (see the drawing below.) The white keys with no stickers represent the spaces between the five lines of the staff.
We make up games, like ringing a library bell every time the child successfully finds the red key, and answers questions like, "Which white key is to the left of the two black keys?" Then ask them to play all the lines (the blue stickers) and then ask for the spaces (the white keys with no stickers at all.)
This is the easy "Fun Method" that we recommend using with all beginning students.
Usually introduced slowly while the child is still playing "by number," the concepts introduced in this book are easy to follow for anyone, and help build the simple, abstract spatial skills necessary to read music, one skill at a time.
The above drawing shows the relationship between the keys of the piano, equipped with stickers, and the lines of the musical staff printed on the page, thus giving the child a visual reference point (Middle C, the red sticker.)
With such a visual reference point, kids relax and treat reading music as a game. Middle C becomes their "home base" around which they can organize their efforts to find the relationship between the page and the keyboard.
Without such a reference point, most children are extremely confused wth music reading,
I CAN READ MUSIC is intended as an easy-to-understand introduction to reading music for children, and thus includes songs which make use of only the WHITE keys of the piano.
I CAN READ MUSIC (Individual Printed Book)
Individual 50 page illustrated book and removable stickers