Right from the first music lesson, a thorough foundation should be laid for future development and learning. This prevents unnecessary frustration in future years. Music studies can soon seem quite difficult if there is no structure to the lessons.
Technique includes playing scales, chords, inversions, arpeggios and other exercises. This is the kinesthetic work which develops finger coordination and familiarity with the basic elements of music. Students are shown artistic touches which are used for emotional expression. They learn efficient practice habits, and our teachers expose them to playing in all keys.
Music theory is the study of the patterns in the fabric of music. Music has been called “math that dances” for good reason. When students know how to recognize these patterns, it becomes much more easy to learn new music. The musical math combines with the human emotion of the performer to make music!
Ear training concerns the development of a student’s ability to discern and identify pitch, rhythms, and dynamics. They learn to hear melodies, harmonies, and the overall form of their pieces. This is essential to more easily understand the language of music.
Sight reading involves reading and playing music “on sight”, without previous practice. Familiarity with the written idiom of music is important, as it is in reading any other language. Intervallic reading, as well as note-spelling should be implemented.
Music teachers should expose their students to a variety of repertoire and styles. This keeps music lessons interesting and fun, while it helps students identify their own musical tastes. A piano method series should be used. There are many good ones out there. Helen Marlais Succeeding at the Piano, Faber Piano Adventures, Bastian, Noona are just a few of them. We use piano methods to keep students in balance. Music concepts are carefully planned out and given in a logical order for students.