With no previous music lessons, can a person learn the piano with this method? YES! Just follow the simple instructions in the "How To Teach Piano" instruction book. A parent can do the lesson first, then show the child. In a week, do the second lesson and so on. This way the parent and child are both learning!
I know how to play the piano. Can I learn to teach piano and earn Money? YES! Each lesson is laid out simply and easy to understand. It is clearly explained how to teach every page in the lesson book. Genie icons are at the side of each instruction paragraph for a condensed explanation of what is being taught on each page.
Where do I find the instructions for the teachers and the students? From the very beginning of the "How To Teach Piano" instruction book. There is a column for the teacher and a column for the student. They correspond back and forth to each other.
Are there Tips And Hints on how to teach and learn? A list of teaching and learning helps are in the last chapter, pages 129-146, of the "How To Teach Piano" instruction book. Genie icons are at the side of each instruction paragraph for a condensed explanation of what is being taught on each page.
Do I need a piano to teach or take piano lessons? It is best to use a piano. However, for the 1st year, an electronic keyboard can be used until a piano is available. This may be a good way to find out if a student is really interested in learning the piano before investing in a piano. A keyboard can continue to be used if it has a pedal. When the use of the pedal is introduced (about 1 year into the lessons), it is best to use a piano.
What is a typical lesson from The Missing Link To Magic Piano Keys? The student will be assigned 6-8 piano pieces each week. Exercises in the Pick, Play, Say, Jump Around Warmups will be assigned. In the first lesson, for example, the student will read 8 easy piano pieces that will begin to teach the notes on the lines and spaces during the lesson. After the notes are explained to them, they will say the names of the notes as they play a piece. Then they will count the rhythm. As they count, their fingers are going automatically down on the right piano keys. This keeps the student constantly reading, playing, and counting. It really works! For each lesson they read 2 pages in each lesson book, as they progress, some books move faster than others. That is the reason for the side tabs on the "How To Teach Piano" instruction book.
How do I use the 5 books, CD, and Game altogether? The "How To Teach Piano" instruction book is your full guide to the rest of the books and materials. Just follow this book step by step. It is like your pattern book for a dress or how to overhaul a car engine. YOU can Learn OR Teach the piano!
Can I substitute other piano lesson books? You need the right tools to have smooth sailing through the beginning books. Do not substitute other books or older editions of Michael Aaron or John Schaum. Older editions have incorrect finger numbers on each note.
Questions For the Instructor / Teacher
How do I motivate children to want to learn the piano? The first chapter in the "How To Teach Piano" instruction book is chuck full of ideas to motivate children. The most important thing it to help the students learn their notes. When a person understands where the notes are and can count correct rhythms, they like what they are doing. It is like math. If you do not know how to do the problem, you do not like it. If you understand how to do the problem, you are more willing to do the math. You like what you understand.
How many piano lessons are there in the in the Missing Link To Magic Piano Keys? There are 2 years of lessons once a week.
How fast can I move through the lessons? If you are teaching students or learning for yourself, take one lesson at time and learn it. Do not move on until you can do the specified task correctly. If you are teaching, demonstrate it to the student. Do not let the student move on until they can do it correctly.
How soon will the student have their notes learned? If lessons are followed correctly, they will learn the notes in 2 months. Students will know their chords and ledger lines before they are introduced in later piano pieces.
How do I know when to pass a piece off and allow the student to move on to the next piano piece? You can pass the piece off when the student plays all the notes, counting, rhythm, and dynamics correctly. Use good judgement. If the frustration level rises to a point where discouragement hinders their progress, pass it off and let them move on.
Should I use a pen when teaching and marking the books? Do not use pen or a red pencil to mark a piece as passed off since they cannot be erased. As you progress through the lessons, and re-use the piano books, you may need to erase the marks that have been made.
Can I label the names of the notes or other visual aids on the piano keys? Please Do Not! This trains the student to depend on the visual aids and not the placement of the fingers. The whole idea is to get the student to associate the notes on the page with the placement of the fingers on the keyboard. These visual aids create habits that are VERY, VERY hard to break.
Do I teach an adult different from a child or a youth? An adult learning how to play the piano will begin and continue the lessons like any other student. Other methods for teaching adults skip part of the foundation of how to play the piano. It does not matter if the student is a child, youth, or adult, if you want them to get a good foundation, follow the lessons as outlined in the "How To Teach Piano" instruction book.
What piano books do you recommend after the first ones are finished? At the end of each book there are instructions where to go to the next book. See page 60 in the "How To Teach Piano" instruction book for an example.
Questions About Students
What is the recommended age to have a child start piano lessons? When a child is in 1st grade. However, a child may be taught at a younger age at a slower pace.
How does an adult begin the lessons? An adult learning how to play the piano will begin and continue the lessons like any other student. Other methods for teaching adults skip part of the foundation of how to play the piano. It does not matter if you are a child, youth, or adult, if you want a good foundation, follow the lessons as outlined in the "How To Teach Piano" instruction book.
When does the student begin to count rhythm? The student is taught to count from the very first lesson. All music is to be counted. For the first 5 or 6 lessons, counting is done with the counting denoted above the notes in the piano book. The Pick, Play, Say, Jump Around exercises are started on the first lesson. Once they learn the technique of the Pick, Play, Say, Jump Arounds then start them on the rhythm patterns. Counting is heard on the CD for each rhythm pattern. In the book "Rhythm, Musics Heart Beat", Side A is of the page is the rhythm pattern, and side B is the answers on how to count the rhythm. "Rhythm, Musics Heart Beat" is complete. All rhythm is addressed. It begins with the first lesson and continues on to advanced counting including how to count jazz rhythms.
Lela Christensen has presented her material at dozens of home- schooling conventions. This is because her method of learning piano is perfect for homeschooling, especially since there is no previous background required. Word for word instructions are included for the teachers and students. Just follow the each lesson like the yellow brick road. You can even teach yourself!
Magic Piano Keys
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We bought your whole program - It is working VERY well for my children. :) - Tresta Neil (Chairman of LDS Homeschool Conference)
"Your books do an excellent job at explaining everything so that a person can teach themselves without any previous knowledge."
- Crystal Hardman
"The part that really sold me was the games and jingles."
- Janna West
"I am actually sight reading an intermediate piece in only 7 months!"
- Moana Edwards
We were established in 2003 and published The Missing Link To "Magic Piano Keys" method of teaching piano. In 2006 we began distributing the series through America's Family Foundation. In January of 2008 we launched our website The Missing Link To "Magic Piano Keys." Over 800 sets of piano teaching books have been sold in the United States and Canada and not one set has been returned.