There are many reasons to bring music into a child’s life. Learning how to play an instrument, like piano, is rewarding and fun. If it isn’t in the budget to hire a piano teacher, at-home tools to learn piano are available. Traditional music books, as well as free online apps and videos, are an inexpensive solution to learn piano.
There are a wide variety of books available that make learning music something to look forward to. “Teaching Little Fingers to Play” by John Thompson is an Amazon best-seller. The melodies have been put together carefully and each page has a step-by-step lesson plan.
“Alfred’s Teach Your Child” to Play Piano is a music expert in a box. The materials provided in the kit complement one another. The provided colored flashcards show notes, symbols and musical terms that help the child learn to read and write. The kit also contains a CD-ROM that acts as a game while teaching music theory. Alfred’s Teach Your Child to Play Piano kit can be purchased at http://www.alfred.com/Products
Keyboard stickers are an easy way to teach which notes belong to which keys on the piano. Create or buy stickers and simply put the note on top of the key that it corresponds with. So the child doesn’t become reliant on the stickers, little by little try to take them off.
Free apps for phones and tablets have been developed to teach piano. An example of an app that has been developed is Piano Duster, from the iTunes store. Piano Duster is activated acoustically by the piano. The app actually listens to the child playing the piano! Use the search term “learn piano” in either the iTunes store or in Google Play.
Visit YouTube for free instructional videos provided by experienced piano teachers. The Hoffman Academy channel is taught by a gentleman who focuses the formal aspect of learning to play the piano. The Piano Online Blog is another channel where the camera angle focuses on the piano giving a clear picture of the hands relative to the notes. Both channels offer clear and easy to follow directions.
A great way for parents and children to learn piano together is to play a duet! If the child is learning to play using their right hand only, the parent can accompany the tune. Allowing for a complete sound can help to boost the child’s confidence.
If it is in the budget, hire an expert. There are a variety of options available to make hiring a piano teacher affordable. Music schools can be a fun way for a child to get to know others in the community who are learning the piano as well. Another affordable option is to hire a high school or college student with experience.
Learning the piano should be fun and these tools will help create this century’s next Beethoven!