Q: Why Group Classes & a Play-Based Approach?
There are several reasons that are related to children’s brain and emotional development in the age group of 5-8 yrs:
- They learn best in a small group rather than individual environment. They learn more from watching their peers than they do in a private lesson where the whole focus is on them.
- They are still in the ‘experiential’ years and are not ready for ‘mastery’ (think of the highly acclaimed Swedish school system where children don’t start Kindy until they are 7 yrs old)
- They are unable to cope with performance pressure
- They memorize their music instead of reading it: They have not been systematically taught the concepts of reading music and how they relate to the music that a child hears and sings. They can get away with memorizing while the songs are simple. But once the songs get more complex, their progress slows right down, they lose motivation because it’s too hard and the parent is left thinking that the child is either not musical or is too lazy to practice.
Q: Why are you teaching them to play on the black notes?
Most modern piano methods start children on the black notes because it helps them to identify the patterns on the piano and find the correct notes. Also, the black notes form a pentatonic scale, which is widely used in early childhood music education.
Our level 2 program takes your child further in their musical development by teaching actual piano playing, on the white notes, using correct posture, correct hand position, technique while reading from the stave.
Q: Why aren’t you teaching them correct hand positions?
The Piano Play system develops the foundations of music. It does not teach piano technique, as it is focused on teaching a child to match what they are hearing with what they are reading. Once a child has developed this foundation, level 2 and 3 of Bee Musical will teach correct hand positions and technique.
Q: When should my child start ‘proper’ piano lessons?
Your teacher will provide a progress report at the end of each term indicating when your child has fully developed their foundational skills, and is ready for private lessons. Skipping the musical foundations and jumping straight into private lessons is like skipping Kindergarten and putting your child straight into year 1 at school. If private lessons is your only option however, talk with us as we can arrange for shared private lessons with another child at the same level, using our Bee Musical programs.