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Yuja Wang at Verbier Festival 2013

In this 3 minute interview Yuja Wang tells us, among other things, the secret of her harmony between fingers and spirit. Read more >>

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Author Topic: My First Student  (Read 1542 times)
devbanana
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« on: April 11, 2014, 04:55:26 AM »

I just taught my first student today. My wife's coworker has an eight-year-old daughter and she wants her to take piano lessons.

I was nervous as this is my first student, and I didn't know how I am with kids. But it went exceptionally well. We learned all the notes and their names, and I taught her how to find C's on the piano. We learned Twinkle Twinkle and she tried playing it in different registers on the piano. She was entertained at how it sounded in the lower octaves. Smiley

So I'm excited. She seemed to really open up to me and she gave me a huge hug before she left.

The only thing I'm nervous about is how I'm going to teach how to read music. I am visually impaired and myself read braille music. I know enough about print music, such as the staff lines and where the pitches go. So that part will be a bit of a challenge, but I'm optimistic about it.

Any tips would be appreciated. I'm trying to find ways to help her to appreciate piano since she's not been exposed to it much before. I know internal motivation is much stronger than external, so I'd like to work on triggering that internal motivation in any way possible.

I'm just excited I finally have a student. Please wish me luck.
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Pieces in progress: Bach BWV 988; Mozart K. 332; Beethoven Op. 27 No. 2; Brahms Op. 79 No. 1; Chopin Op. 35, Op. 69 No. 2; Rachmaninoff Op. 23 No. 5
awesom_o
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« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2014, 02:11:09 PM »

Good luck! Now that she knows Twinkle well, see if she can play it with you providing basic improvised accompaniment in the secondo register!

Are you planning to use a method book? I like Suzuki for that age group.

How visually impaired are you? Can you read any print music? I've heard that braille music is quite bulky, which must be inconvenient when dealing with longer pieces...
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devbanana
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« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2014, 03:56:35 PM »

Are you planning to use a method book? I like Suzuki for that age group.

Yes I plan on using a method book, but wasn't sure what would be the best. Can you tell me what you like about the Suzuki method?

How visually impaired are you? Can you read any print music? I've heard that braille music is quite bulky, which must be inconvenient when dealing with longer pieces...

I have no vision at all. Yes braille music can get bulky, say about 4-6 braille pages per print page, but it's not all that bad.
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Pieces in progress: Bach BWV 988; Mozart K. 332; Beethoven Op. 27 No. 2; Brahms Op. 79 No. 1; Chopin Op. 35, Op. 69 No. 2; Rachmaninoff Op. 23 No. 5
awesom_o
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« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2014, 04:10:36 PM »


I have no vision at all. Yes braille music can get bulky, say about 4-6 braille pages per print page, but it's not all that bad.

My goodness, for some of the works I'm studying, that would amount to over 500 pages!

I like the Suzuki method for various reasons. The progression of difficulty is quite rapid in book 1, and by the time you get to book 2, the music is by real composers, like Hummel, and Bach, and Schumann.

The beginning of book 1 is a little too difficult for MOST 5-year-old children, but with parental support, they get there eventually.

Most 7-8 year-old children find book 1 quite easy, and can master all of the pieces it contains within a year, as long as they practice every day.

I can't tell you everything about the Suzuki method, as it goes well beyond the scope of a single forum post. I studied the Suzuki method on several instruments as a child, and it has had a lasting impact on my lifelong love of music.

I don't teach JUST the Suzuki method, as I have many methods of my own to fill in the gaps which exist in ANY method.
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devbanana
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« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2014, 04:20:50 PM »

My goodness, for some of the works I'm studying, that would amount to over 500 pages!

Same here, trust me. Any kind of piano concerto is massive in braille. In that case they just split it into volumes.

I like the Suzuki method for various reasons. The progression of difficulty is quite rapid in book 1, and by the time you get to book 2, the music is by real composers, like Hummel, and Bach, and Schumann.

The beginning of book 1 is a little too difficult for MOST 5-year-old children, but with parental support, they get there eventually.

Most 7-8 year-old children find book 1 quite easy, and can master all of the pieces it contains within a year, as long as they practice every day.

I can't tell you everything about the Suzuki method, as it goes well beyond the scope of a single forum post. I studied the Suzuki method on several instruments as a child, and it has had a lasting impact on my lifelong love of music.

I don't teach JUST the Suzuki method, as I have many methods of my own to fill in the gaps which exist in ANY method.

Thank you. I will take a look.
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Pieces in progress: Bach BWV 988; Mozart K. 332; Beethoven Op. 27 No. 2; Brahms Op. 79 No. 1; Chopin Op. 35, Op. 69 No. 2; Rachmaninoff Op. 23 No. 5
cometear
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« Reply #5 on: June 09, 2014, 09:54:05 PM »

I just started teaching as well and I have 5 students ranging from 9 - 14. I am in NO WAY a professional but I believe that I can share knowledge with those who would like it. I have taught them all by using the staff and using the Piano Adventures method book. I've only had them for a month. Keep in mind I teach the Taubman Approach so it is a slower start than other methods (such as the Suzuki). I'm not saying to teach the Taubman Approach but I would work at a slower and more traditional method than the Suzuki.
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Clementi, Piano Sonata in G Minor, No. 3, op. 10
W. A. Mozart, Sonata for Piano Four-Hands in F Major, K. 497
Beethoven, Piano Concerto, No. 2, op. 19
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