Music education often takes a backseat to more "practical" subjects such as mathematics or science. School budget cuts can lead to schools without music programs (or limited music programs) or music teacher resources.
This instructor-led workshop can be done for any organization or group, including elementary, middle and high schools, community centers, youth groups or even just a local neighborhood. Because only the instructor needs a keyboard or piano to teach any size group, any organization can easily host the workshop as long as they have a room, table and chairs to fit the group size. The Portable Piano Workshop cutting edge features includes the following:
A breakthrough piano teaching method that teaches student to recognize shapes & patterns, essentially mimicking how we all learned to speak and write our native language. As children, we all learn to speak before we learn to read (and all the grammar rules that go with reading).
Over 5 million lessons have been taught worldwide in the past 20 years using this method, which has been endorsed & taught by many, many professional musicians and teachers.
Students learn to play songs within the first lesson or two, sparking interest and excitement through a hands-on approach and immediate success in learning.
Our piano workshop is a tiny portion of a much larger proven piano curriculum available to accomplish a broad and full piano education, including music theory, improvisation and accompaniment skills. Another 10+ years of lessons is available for students who have completed the workshop.
Several major styles of music are included: contemporary, classical, gospel, blues and accompaniment
Online Student and Parent portal with supplemental videos on how to play pieces.
A standardized curriculum allows us to get standard results with all students.
The group lesson format teaches valuable social skill as well as helps keep students focused and engaged.
Easily develop a repertoire of piano songs using an effective and fun format.
This breakthrough and fun method encourages and supports students to continue learning piano for the long term. How many adults wish they had continued their piano lessons?
Why Learn Piano?
Kids who learn music actively tend to perform better in other subjects, such as math, science and engineering. Piano is a fantastic instrument to start with because it requires very little physical strength and it's very visual, thus easier to explain than string or wind instruments.
Learning piano activates both side of the brain at the same time, improving brain function by developing and strengthening neural pathways. Creativity, a vital skill for succeeding in life, is nourished, nurtured and stimulated through learning music, positively impacting self-expression and self-confidence.
Learning piano through this breakthrough method is fun as children (and parents!) quickly and easily learn a large number of high-quality songs. In addition to gaining confidence in other areas of their life, piano can be a way to relieve stress. Establishing a strong relationship with music as a life-long companion rounds children out emotionally through a fun activity. Even more important, learning how to persevere and get over the ups and downs of learning music mimics life's ups and downs; a valuable lesson to learn early inside a safe and fun-formatted activity.
Accomplished musicians applying for college scholarships have an additional feather in their cap, maybe even more than one feather! Admissions departments are more likely to choose applicants who are well rounded out emotionally and have proven their ability to work well with others (i.e. jazz band, choir, orchestra, ensembles, etc.) over a math-obsessed student without social or team skills. Colleges maintain extra curricular activities such as music programs they must fill each year. If your child has learned music well enough to play in an orchestra or music group, it might help them get accepted into the college of their choice over another less-skilled applicant.
What's Different about the Fun Music Piano Workshop?
This method of teaching is accomplished without the need for each student to have a piano in the classroom. While each student needs a keyboard of some kind to practice at home, any school or educational group only needs a teacher and a piano proxy - in this case, a paper piano keyboard - in order to learn song basics. This allows a great reduction in costs and equipment, and it's a highly effective tool in the classroom. Beginning students focus on learning foundational musical concepts and a base repertoire of 14 songs. The basic steps of the teaching method are as follows:
The song to be learned is already broken down into specific and easy to learn patterns.
The Instructor teaches the patterns; first the right hand patterns, then the left hand patterns, then how to play both hands together.
Any final flourishes are added; an extra note here, a little up and down there, to round out the piece and complete it.
Students mimic the teacher's instructions on a printed (paper) piano keyboard during the class. Once the class is complete, students simply fold up the piano to take with them.
Each song has printed visual aids provided to help the student remember the pattern.
Students practice the patterns at home using a regular piano or keyboard.
Online videos of the songs and patterns are available for students and parents to refer to for home practice.
The online resources include background soundtracks (including vocals) to play along to, giving the feeling of being in a band, playing along!
The program is suitable for beginners who have no experience or some experience playing piano.
What do you need to do the program?
Students will need a piano or keyboard at home, preferably with at least 61 keys. The minimum number of keys would be 49 keys. Best is a full size 88-key keyboard or piano.
Internet access and the ability play the training videos and soundtracks at home is vital for quality practice time.
The paper practice pad is provided as part of the workshop.
Optional: Earbuds (or similar) AND a larger headset that will fit over the earbuds, to enable the student to listen to the soundtracks while playing along creates a great learning environment and experience.
Parents who sign up for the program should read the digital copy of Music and the Art of Long-Term Relationships, written by Neil Moore. A free digital copy is provided as part of the program. This educational book will help parents (or anyone in the role of parent) manage a child's success and progress through the program.
Other than the above, just a classroom and an instructor is all that's needed! If you have been referred to this webpage by a school, organization or youth group, please ask them for class dates and location information.
How Long is the Program?
This beginners' class is an 8-week workshop. Older students can learn up to 14 different songs. Younger students will learn 8-14 songs depending on how well the can focus and practice. The classroom instruction provides live support from an experienced teacher, but it is possible for students to progress on their own and move forward using the online curriculum prior to the next workshp class. Such students will be still be examined by the teacher weekly to provide feedback, answer questions and assist in correcting form, etc. Because each song learned builds a skill towards learning the next song, the focus is on doing a good job on each song, not just rushing ahead to keep up with the curriculum. For that reason, each student may learn a different number of songs well, instead of 15 songs poorly.
Depending on the number of enrollments, workshops are formed around the following age groups (or as requested by a specific group):
How to sit properly at a piano
How to train one's fingers to move with grace and ease
Basic piano fingering (1-5)
What is a melody?
Understanding basic chords
Accompaniment (with a singer, with a band).
Improvisation in music and beginner improvising skills