Dwight D. Eisenhower an American army general once said “Plans are nothing, planning is everything” and we truly believe in this philosophy. As long as you plan your chances for success will increase ten-fold. The beginner piano lesson planning starts with its duration. The recommended duration of the piano lesson for kids of young age is 30 min. You will notice that, in general, the number and the granularity of the activities in the Piano Heroes method are well balanced with the kids’ age.
The typical beginner piano lesson can be seen as a mix of short activities from the three major categories as Routine, Playing Piano and Off-the-Bench. The magic of the method is in the right mix of those three in each and every piano lesson and you will see how the mix changes as you progress through the book to the ultimate goal of achieving the Keyboard Superpower. The table below represents all three categories and their main attributes for your reference.
The main role of the Routine is to help in building rapport with the student, plan, warm up, mentally prepare for the lesson at the beginning and wrap the lesson up at the end. Routine activities are like light switches they start and end at the same time and trigger the learning process. They include Welcome, Lesson Scheduler, Finger Gym, Homework Assignment, and Parent Talk.
We cannot teach to play the piano without actually playing the piano hence this is the most important category of all. It is a time when a student can play, experiment and learn from her own mistakes. The activities like playing simple melodies, patterning and rote pieces are an excellent choice for beginner piano students.
The activities from the Off-the-Bench category help kids in overcoming their lack of interest and short attention span. They go hand in hand with the Playing Piano activities and serve as a glue in memorizing the concepts faster. We are talking about the Listening, Rhythm Exercises, Lost and Found, Math, Game Time, and anything else you can come up with as long as it is interesting and fits well into the format and the timeline of your lesson.
This lesson planning was created for the Piano Heroes curriculum. Mission Start is the first book in the Piano Heroes series of books for young children. The method is using the aural/exploratory approach to teaching the piano. Therefore before teaching to read musical notation the book is focusing on learning the musical concepts through the pictures of the physical world objects, their names, colours, and the common real-world phenomena which are easy to comprehend for kids of this age. Just like keeping the structural integrity of the foundation is vital to the long-lasting life of the house, this book is teaching the foundational concepts and skills to succeed on the long and challenging journey of learning the piano superpower.