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Start piano at home with your child

Start with numbers, then read music

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IS PRESCHOOL A GOOD AGE TO START PIANO?

It would depend entirely on what piano method you choose to use.

The Suzuki piano Method, for example, is militaristic and group oriented. There is little individual attention available in group piano situations, and I have taught many classes of this type.

No matter how hard you try as a group piano teacher, there will be moments when you cannot help a child because the process dictates that you move on and help another. My experience is that group classes benefit the teacher or institution charging the fees, not your child.

Seeking out a conventional disciplinarian is often the only other choice, usually when such a teacher has taught in a neighborhood for years and has a history with people.

There are other choices.

Kindermusic is a group music stimulation program that is geared to younger kids. It is warm and friendly, and is happily free of the Army-like Suzuki mentality. There are other groups of this type, often local. The problem becomes when your child needs more challenges and individual attention than is possible within even the most benevolent group.

Given these choices, one can see that it is wise to match the instruction to the child’s personality.

For example, a child who is very fast, hyper, intelligent and self motivated will be frustrated by group alternatives, and might be a better candidate for individual lessons, given a suitable teacher.

But which type of individual piano teacher is best? Should you look for a disciplinarian or a games-master?

The disciplinarian will lead your child through a standard text, page by page, and if your child likes it, that is good. But if they don’t like that process, don’t expect the teacher to bend to try to interest your child, for they will not.

Piano teachers of this type, for whatever reasons, teach only the standard curriculum from a standard text, and if you can’t keep up, you are a failure and are made to feel it.

On the other hand you might be able to find someone who specializes in introducing young children to the piano, a type of piano teacher I call the “games master.”

As the piano teaching industry grows, more and more teachers are finding ways to introduce “soft” piano methods into their beginning students curriculum, if the student’s needs call for it. Not every child is a prodigy, rather, far from it, and most average kids need a lot of help discovering how to have fun with the piano.

The benefits of “soft” piano methods (piano by number, by color, by ear, by eye) are many for the youngest children, not the least of which is the enthusiasm that it brings to the learning process. All work and no play makes Jack a dull pianist.

In short, preschool is a fine age to start introducing the elements of music and the piano, but you must be careful to scale the pool of ideas and tasks down to a small group of essentials, not the least of which is enthusiasm.

You’ll never get a child to read music fluently and without fear if they won’t go to the piano to have fun.

By John Aschenbrenner Copyright 2008 Walden Pond Press All Rights Reserved

PIANO IS EASY includes a 107 page song book with 44 songs. It is identical to the print version.

PIANO IS EASY DOWNLOAD wcs018DL $9.95 Includes download of printable 120 page illustrated song book with 50 songs in Adobe PDF format plus printable stickers. Identical to the printed version

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BOOKS

See also: PRESCHOOL PIANO PACKAGE: A selection of books for the youngest kids

See also: CHILDREN'S MULTI BOOK PACKAGE: Includes books for older AND younger children

See also: ADULT PIANO PACKAGE: A selection of books for adult beginners

REFERENCES

See also PRESCHOOL PIANO LESSON PLANS

See also WHAT IS A GOOD AGE TO START PIANO LESSONS.

See also KNOWING WHEN TO BACK OFF IN A CHILD'S PIANO LESSON

See also BRAINS, CHILDREN AND PIANO

See also HOW A CHILD'S AGE AFFECTS PIANO LESSON MOTOR SKILLS

See also WHY DELAY READING MUSIC

See also WHEN IS LEARNING FINGERING NECESSARY

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Here's what your piano will look like with the piano key stickers applied.

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The Piano Is Easy Book Package offers a discount for buying several books at once.

PIANO IS EASY BOOK PACKAGE INCLUDES:

PIANO IS EASY (ISBN # 0-9718936-1-6) Sturdily bound, durable, colorful 120 page illustrated song book with 50 songs such as Jingle Bells and London Bridge, Play Along Audio CD and removable numbered stickers. 

Every book package order of PIANO IS EASY includes a copy of I CAN READ MUSIC. This fun, easy-to-understand music activity book is the best way to start children reading music. Click here for sample pages.

Every book package order of PIANO IS EASY includes a FREE copy of the 56 minute DVD video from TEACH YOURSELF PIANO. This video will have you playing chords (three piano keys played with the left hand) and fun, familiar songs with both hands right away. That's a $16.95 value free!

2 BOOKS,  PLAY ALONG AUDIO CD and DVD 

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PIANO IS EASY BOOK PACKAGE $39.95   

 PIANO IS EASY book package includes a 120 page song book with 50 songs and removable stickers, plus a Play Along Audio CD, free DVD and copy of the book  I CAN READ MUSIC.

You can also purchase individual books with CD $24.95

Play Along Audio CDs help the child enjoy making music.

Teaching children the piano involves much more than just reading the notes.

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