music lessonsonline music lessons by webcamPiano LessonsPre-Schoolers and Piano Lessons – A Good Match or Not?

October 19, 2009by emilylowe2

Recently, I have been getting a lot of calls from parents of pre-schoolers asking about piano lessons. They are wondering if it is too soon to start and what I think about that age group taking piano lessons. Because of this, I thought it would be good to write a post with my feelings and thoughts about pre-schoolers and music lessons.

 

Pre-Schoolers and Piano Lessons – A Good Match or Not?

 

 

Pre-Schoolers Benefit from Music and/or Piano Lessons!
Pre-Schoolers Benefit from Music and/or Piano Lessons!

Recently, I have been getting a lot of calls from parents of pre-schoolers asking about piano lessons.  They are wondering if it is too soon to start and what I think about that age group taking piano lessons.  Because of this, I thought it would be good to write a post with my feelings and thoughts about pre-schoolers and music lessons.

First of all, let me say that I think it’s GREAT for pre-schoolers to take a general music class!  Where else can you find out if you potentially have a little Mozart on your hands?  Music teachers of pre-schoolers have also been known to tell the parents if they spot a “little Beethoven” amongst their students.  Also, taking music lessons has proven to be an overall good idea for the development of a young brain!  So I am definitely “down” with group music classes for pre-schoolers!

Pre-Schoolers and Piano Lessons
Pre-Schoolers and Piano Lessons

When it comes to piano lessons, however, I take a slightly more cautious approach.  The first thing I ask is “Is your child in Kindergarten?”  I ask this because if a child is in the first half of the Kindergarten year, this may NOT be the best time to start piano lessons as they are already trying to adjust to the new rigors of school. If the child is in the SECOND HALF of the Kindergarten year, then I think it is okay to start them.

If the child has not yet entered Kindergarten, then I have a few other questions: 

  1. Why do you want for your pre-schooler to take piano lessons?
  2. Has your pre-schooler been asking for lessons?
  3. Has another music teacher recommended that you pursue piano lessons for your pre-schooler?

What I am looking for here is a couple of things: 

  • I want the pre-schooler to WANT to take piano lessons and if they have been asking for them, chances are good that they will excel.
  • If a music teacher has recommended that a pre-schooler take piano lessons, then chances are that the child has exceptional musical ability and will excel in the lessons.

At this young and impressionable age, it is very important that any kind of music lessons/piano lessons are a positive and happy experience for the youngster!

In order for a positive experience to occur, I take the following approach:

  1. I use a method book called “The Little Avant Garde” by Stephen Covello, which uses an extremely creative approach to teaching piano and encourages experimentation on the part of the child.  This method slowly eases a child into reading notes on a staff while subtly teaching music theory.
  2. I don’t make the child sit at the piano the entire lesson (which is usually 20-30 minutes).  We move around a lot, using lots of “music toys” such as ‘magic wands’ and punch-out foam treble and bass clefs, and large puzzle pieces which integrate into a staff.
  3. I reward them by playing short “games” with them if they can show me that they can play their piano pieces.

 

After having taught pre-schoolers for over ten years, I can honestly say that I get excited about having the opportunity to teach them!  They have turned out to be some of the best, most creative and happy piano students that I have had!

At Emily Lowe’s Music Star Studios, we have teachers who have been through a training course on teaching pre-schoolers piano lessons.  If you are interested in learning more, please click here!

Emily Lowe's Music Star Studios Offers Piano Lessons for Pre-Schoolers in the Greater Nashville, TN  Area!

2 comments

  • Steve

    April 3, 2010 at 7:20 pm

    Thank you for mentioning The Little Avant-Garde. I remember my father developing the books when I was a child, and testing them out on my sister, Julie around 1970. Many of the principles he developed as a basis for his theory of music instruction I have used as a basis for my current graduate studies in Instructional Design. I am proud that Mr. Covello’s work has stood the test of time. Please feel free to contact me if you would like some insight into LAG’s development. My daughter is now a 5 yrs. old, and I wish my father was around to play with her on the piano. Mr. Covello also developed a group piano course for pre-schoolers that was not published. Quite innovative. – Steve, III: apescience.com/id

    Reply

    • Emily Lowe

      April 4, 2010 at 11:20 pm

      Wow – Hi Steve, Thanks for the comment! I love using your father’s book The Little Avant-Garde. The students who began with this series have without fail become my most creative students! I would love some further insight into its development, so I will be contacting you! Thanks again — Emily Lowe, Music Star Studios Proprietor

      Reply

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