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#1493473 - 08/11/10 01:22 PM Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards?
eweiss Offline
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Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
They do if they start with the note-reading approach. Most would agree that music is a language. Language is learned first by speaking it. Yet this simple logic eludes many well meaning music teachers as they head first into the study of note-reading.

But just imagine if children learned how to speak the language of music before learning how to read and write it. Imagine the connection, the innate sense of ‘wiring’ for lack of a better word that can occur if we introduce kids to simple diatonic harmony and improvisation first.

Speaking the native language is a natural and thrilling experience for children. They can’t wait to use words and communicate. So why is it that note reading is literally forced down the throats of our young people instead of giving them the opportunity to express firsthand through improvisation?

True enrichment comes from direct experience with the music. And this is best accomplished when children can actually create on their own without the aid of sheet music. Why this isn’t being done more is a complete mystery to me. And if it is being done, that's a mystery to me as well since you really never hear about it. smile
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#1493503 - 08/11/10 01:50 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: eweiss]
Ben Crosland Offline
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Registered: 03/11/10
Posts: 419
Loc: Worcester, UK
Just because I teach note-reading from day one, this in no way implies (as your post seems to) that this is all I teach them. They learn the notation through the music that they learn to play, as an integral part of the process - done well, the student will learn the technical skills, sight-reading abilities and aural awareness that will eventually empower them to explore whatever music they choose, in whatever way they see fit.

Speaking for myself, I am able to play a fairly decent selection from the works of some of the greatest musicians ever to have lived. My ability to do so is largely based on my understanding of traditional notation, and my observation and rehearsal of established techniques. I am also able to explore my creative side through composition, which naturally involves a fair amount of improvisation to kick-start the creative process.

Given the choice, I would gladly sacrifice my creative side, if it meant I could keep my ability to play music by such incredible and diverse composers such as Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Satie, Hensel, Szymanowski, Debussy, Gershwin, Brubeck, etc.

And also, I believe I speak for all of us here when I refute your ridiculous suggestion that we "literally force note-reading down the throats of our young". You do understand what the word 'literally' means, don't you? wink
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#1493509 - 08/11/10 01:57 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Ben Crosland]
eweiss Offline
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Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
Originally Posted By: Ben Crosland
Just because I teach note-reading from day one, this in no way implies (as your post seems to) that this is all I teach them. They learn the notation through the music that they learn to play, as an integral part of the process - done well, the student will learn the technical skills, sight-reading abilities and aural awareness that will eventually empower them to explore whatever music they choose, in whatever way they see fit.

I don't know you Ben. So how would I know what you teach? As far as exploring whatever music they choose, that's true as far as being able to read what others have written. But what about having them speak music? Can they just sit down at the piano and play, or is sheet music required?
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#1493535 - 08/11/10 02:28 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: eweiss]
Ben Crosland Offline
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Registered: 03/11/10
Posts: 419
Loc: Worcester, UK
Originally Posted By: eweiss

I don't know you Ben. So how would I know what you teach?


My point exactly. Yet your opening paragraph suggests that you assume much about those of us who adopt a more traditional approach by inflicting the evils of note-reading on our poor students from the very first lessons.

As for whether or not my students can improvise at the keyboard or play by ear at all - that depends on the student. Some of them are much more comfortable than others in this regard.

I don't know you either, Edward, but from what I can tell you offer lessons in a pretty specific subset of piano music, designed to encourage free expression? Well, that's great, but remember that your experience of teaching people this way is unlikely to give you much insight into the experience of those students of more traditional teachers, as your client base is going to be made up of people who are specifically interested in learning your kind of approach.

My client base is largely made up of people who want to play either classical music or, in the case of many of the children, 'tunes they know'. My personal experience also leads me to think that is easier for a note-reader to learn to develop their aural skills than it is for an ear-player to discipline themselves to play from a score.

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#1493538 - 08/11/10 02:33 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Ben Crosland]
Mirela Offline
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Registered: 06/29/10
Posts: 65
Loc: Bucharest, Romania
Well, as a non native speaker of English I did learn first by imitating, because I started young (around 5-ish), but my kindergarten English was extremely limited and I couldn't carry any conversation, that's for sure. I could maybe count to ten, recite Twinkle twinkle little Star and a couple (as in 2) nursery rhymes and I understood maybe a quarter of the words I was muttering. I was good for my pronunciation, as some English sounds like "th" for example don't exist in Romanian, and we always roll the r .... so I got accustomed to English sounds early, but that was about all the benefit of it.

Real learning of English started only when I started reading and writing.
It was only then when I could start making sentences on my own, and communicate a meaning, not just repeat some sounds I was hearing.

My point is: bilingualism is possible. even trilingualism I have no doubt!

But for that to happen you need a parent to speak that language to you on a daily basis and not just in "practice time sessions", but in every aspect of your life. You need to be exposed to that language constantly and consistently. That's why I believe proper Suzuki works.

On the other hand you have the 99/% of families who for different reasons choose not to speak music 24/7 to their children. Some parents don't have the time. Others think they're too old to learn music, some children spend too much time away from their parents being in millions of extra-curricular activities away from the house all day. They practically get home, eat and go to sleep. No time for talking "music" or any other second language.

Only half an hour per week with a teacher will never accomplish anything if you go by the "second language" theory. Ask any qualified Suzuki teacher.

So what about the rest?
Billions of people around the world learn English or Spanish as a foreign language. Some become quite proficient. In certain situations, they might even have a better grammar structure compared to some lesser educated native speakers.

When you learn any language as a foreign language you do it reading and writing. And for example learning rules after rules like "in the indicative, add an s after the verb for the third person singular" "for past perfect you must use the past form of the verb "to have" plus past participle of the verb you want to conjugate"

Sounds hard? That's how most of us learned it. That means a lot of reading of what other people write and a lot of trial and error written exercises corrected by teachers.

So yes, music is a language. Yes, it can be learned as a second language and children can be bilingual with music as their second language, but for that parents have a crucial role, not teachers. There are numerous cases in which parents are of different ethnicity yet the child speaks only one of the parents' language (that's why some call it mother tongue!). The other parent had all the opportunity in the world to have his child bilingual, but probably wasn't consistent enough. Some phrases spoken now and then don't help.

That is why when as a parent you go with your child to a music teacher and leave it all to him, he has no other choice than teaching your child a foreign language.

If you, as a parent are aware of the huge opportunity your child has to learn music as a second language and are willing to commit yourself to that mission, than you take your kid to a Suzuki "life coach".

It's that simple. So, my answer is:
No, most piano teachers don't have it backwards. Parents on the other hand, may! [I don't say do, because in most cases parents really are unable to commit themselves to such a task. It's only for a few. Kind of like homeschooling is not for everyone either]


Edited by Mirela (08/11/10 02:39 PM)
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#1493563 - 08/11/10 03:04 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Mirela]
Lollipop Offline
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Registered: 07/28/09
Posts: 820
Loc: Georgia
I started teaching my kid his ABC's in utero. smile I also taught him some sign language before he learned to talk. So at about 9 months or so, he was able to tell me he wanted more, all done, cracker, apple(sauce), and a few other things. He started talking a couple months later, but continued to sign for awhile. (And no, no one in the family is deaf.)

I have no idea what it means in terms of teaching piano - except perhaps there is more than one way, depending upon developmental stages?

Cognitively, infants aren't ready for reading and writing. However, as individuals grow and develop, their ability to learn foreign languages changes, too. Around age 12 or so, learning changes, and it has been found that students do better acquiring a language if grammar is taught at the same time, with more visual (reading and writing) tasks accompanying the speaking and listening.

It makes sense to me that teaching younger folks piano will require a different approach than older ones.
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#1493580 - 08/11/10 03:28 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Mirela]
eweiss Offline
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Registered: 02/28/09
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Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
Originally Posted By: Mirela
Well, as a non native speaker of English I did learn first by imitating, because I started young (around 5-ish), but my kindergarten English was extremely limited and I couldn't carry any conversation, that's for sure.

True Mireala. All I'm saying is that people are naturally 'wired' to speak language. Why not take advantage of that and teach the 'universal' language the same way?
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#1493585 - 08/11/10 03:37 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Lollipop]
Mirela Offline
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Registered: 06/29/10
Posts: 65
Loc: Bucharest, Romania
Youtube is full with very young children playing piano. I wouldn't call them infants though ... Toddlers maybe, but there's a thin line there smile. Evidently they weren't taught the usual reading-writing.

I am quite fascinated with bilingualism both musically as well as learning a second language that way from the very infancy. I have some friends whose kids are trilingual: Mother French, father Turkish, family living in the UK...

Too sad I have no kids.... yet frown

But I plan to learn a lot about Suzuki and other "second language" approaches to music by then. ... Although it's going to be hard to persuade my DH to give up his trashy-hard&heavy Rock music in the car to listen only to Shin'ichi Suzuki's variations on Twinkle twinkle little star! ha
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#1493590 - 08/11/10 03:46 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Ben Crosland]
Morodiene Online   content
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Originally Posted By: Ben Crosland
Originally Posted By: eweiss

I don't know you Ben. So how would I know what you teach?


My point exactly. Yet your opening paragraph suggests that you assume much about those of us who adopt a more traditional approach by inflicting the evils of note-reading on our poor students from the very first lessons.



And also from the title of this topic. Ben, you and I are very much alike from what you've said. In fact, my very first encounter with a student includes improvising. I encourage improvising and composing throughout the year, along with note reading, theory, technique, and musicality. Improvising and composing absolutely help a student in their ability to be expressive players - this was actually the basis of my master's thesis.

I'm sure there are teachers out there that ignore this side of piano - which is how it was done when I was growing up. However, a good many now are recognizing that we play composed music and many of the great composers were also great improvisers, as well as the fact that if we wish to perpetuate the tradition of playing composed music, we should be encouraging new young composers.
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#1493605 - 08/11/10 04:12 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Morodiene]
Gerard12 Offline
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Registered: 03/19/10
Posts: 757
Loc: South Carolina
I'm interested in hearing what those members who have started with - or teach with - the Suzuki method have to say about this topic.
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#1493606 - 08/11/10 04:16 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: eweiss]
Mirela Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/29/10
Posts: 65
Loc: Bucharest, Romania
Originally Posted By: eweiss
True Mirela. All I'm saying is that people are naturally 'wired' to speak language. Why not take advantage of that and teach the 'universal' language the same way?


Somehow you missed a bit of the point of that sentence. I was NOTspeaking the language. I could not communicate meaning and I could not understand meaning. If someone spoke English to me I could not respond. Teaching me to imitate some phrases in English did not teach me the language.

It's like in that kids' movie with James Belushi and some kid who "could spell" weird long words like "chrysanthemum" or something but was at a loss when asked to spell "cat".

Asphyxiate was the word curly sue could spell. Chrysanthemum was from Anne of Green Gables spelling bee I think, when she beat Gilbert smile

Yes, I would have had set answers for "what's your name" and "how old are you".

But should anyone have asked me to pass the salt or point to the toilet I would have stared blank. I could recite the numbers from 1 to 10, but if someone would have said to me "Please, count to ten" instead of "Numara pana la zece in engleza" ... again, I would have been clueless.

You speak a language first by understanding what you hear, and only after that by putting your own words together in an acceptable manner so that you, in your turn, can be understood.

Yes, maybe I was a bright kid [that's the end of modesty here! ha ]... I always said "Mirela" when someone asked "What's your name". I had lots of friends who answered "I'm 5". But that's only because I was paying attention. The same friends would also mistake a goat for a sheep [in Romanian this time]. It had nothing to do with my ability to speak English.


Edited by Mirela (08/11/10 04:23 PM)
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#1493618 - 08/11/10 04:31 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Mirela]
eweiss Offline
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Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
When I was a child, my parents sent me to Hebrew school. I learned the hebrew alphabet and how to read and write the language.

But, they neglected to teach me the most important thing ... how to understand the language!

Now, most colleges today teach the immersion technique where you literally have to speak the language or get lost in the class. Is that strategy a success? You bet it is. The immersion method is extremely successful. To this day, I can speak 'survival' Spanish. Yet I forget how to read and write Hebrew.
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#1493647 - 08/11/10 04:54 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: eweiss]
dumdumdiddle Offline
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Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1264
Loc: California
English was not my first language. I didn't speak it until I was 5 years old. I learned it through immersion, through listening to others speak it, and imitating.

We've hosted several foreign exchange students in our home over the past 15+ years. Those from Europe typically have good English skills. They have more opportunity to converse in English when traveling to other nearby countries. The students we've had from Japan have had decent English 'writing' skills, but their conversational skills have been very limited.

Our last exchange student stayed for a school year. While she spoke pretty good English, she will readily say that her skills improved not from the reading/writing associated with school, but from speaking with other Americans.

I do the same when I travel to Germany. I listen to what people around me are saying (certain phrases, verb tenses, etc...) and I purposely imitate those things.

While I don't teach Suzuki, I do subscribe to the 'ear before eye' philosophy of teaching, particularly for young children. Having taught this way, as well as the more traditional 'method book' approach for the last 30+ years, I like the end result BETTER of 'ear first'.
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#1493659 - 08/11/10 05:01 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: eweiss]
Mirela Offline
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Registered: 06/29/10
Posts: 65
Loc: Bucharest, Romania
Well, you are mistaking learning a set of characters with learning a language as a foreign language.

I can read the Russian characters and I could happily "demonstrate reading" of said language, but I never pretended I speak Russian. This "skill" is helpful to me as being close to Russia a lot of sheet music we get comes from that source and when you assign a piece to a child you should at least know who composed it smile

As a lot of people pointed out here, piano teachers do teach music as a language not only some meaningless signs.

As for the immersion language technique, you have to look no further than wikipedia:
language immersion uses the target language as a teaching tool, surrounding or "immersing" students in the second language. In-class activities, such as math, science, social studies, and history, and those outside of the class, such as meals or everyday tasks, are conducted in the target language"

It's not a half an hour per week technique.
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#1493673 - 08/11/10 05:23 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Mirela]
Mirela Offline
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Registered: 06/29/10
Posts: 65
Loc: Bucharest, Romania
I totally agree with you dumdumdiddle,

Some people never become proficient in a foreign language because of the lack of opportunity to practice it (like you can never become a good pianist if you don't have an instrument at hand to practice on)

And as you said immersion is all about extensive exposure to the language. I am all for that. I did say I want to learn all that I can about Suzuki before I have (with God's help) my own child.

I am fascinated about immersion learning and bilingualism and all the "ear before eye" as you say.

I never argued with this side of the theory. In fact that's why I did answer this topic in the beginning, hoping to find more about what I could do for my own child if and when I become a mother.

What is still arguable is the fact that most piano teachers have it backwards.

I hate repeating myself, if it's half an hour per week it's not called immersion.

As a teacher who knows the child has only limited exposure to the language you are teaching him, you can do your best to teach the child the tools so that he can explore this language on his own.

Honestly, if you left your child half an hour per week in a room with one person speaking only Dutch, how much would he learn in a school year (roughly 34 encounters meaning a total of 17 hours scattered throughout the year)? When would he be able to carry a fluent conversation in Dutch?

dumdumdiddle,
Could you detail more on the way you approach younger children with the "ear before eye" technique?

I am particularly interested as I have never had students younger than 5.

Do you get students who aren't supported by parents (other than bringing them to the lesson and possibly buying a keyboard for practice at home)?

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#1493675 - 08/11/10 05:27 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Mirela]
Wizard of Oz Offline
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Registered: 08/12/09
Posts: 873
Reading/writing and speaking skills are 2 completely different things.

I learned Chinese because my parents spoke it to me everyday from the day I was born. However, I didn't take proper lessons so I can barely read or write at all. And my spoken vocal is more everyday and social conversations. I wouldn't be able to conduct business or have a debate.

I have European friends and most speak good English simply because their native language is much more closely related. German, Dutch, Swedish, Danish and English all come from the same roots, as does French, Italian, Spanish. They also all use the alphabet.

Asian native speakers have a much harder time learning English because Chinese, Korea, Japanese, Thai... don't use an alphabet and the spoken sounds are completely different.

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#1493685 - 08/11/10 05:40 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Ben Crosland]
Ebony and Ivory Offline
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Registered: 02/14/05
Posts: 1179
Loc: Minnesota
Originally Posted By: Ben Crosland

And also, I believe I speak for all of us here when I refute your ridiculous suggestion that we "literally force note-reading down the throats of our young". You do understand what the word 'literally' means, don't you? wink


Indeed, I was thinking the same thing Ben thumb
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#1493687 - 08/11/10 05:42 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Wizard of Oz]
Mirela Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/29/10
Posts: 65
Loc: Bucharest, Romania
Originally Posted By: Wizard of Oz
Asian native speakers have a much harder time learning English because Chinese, Korea, Japanese, Thai... don't use an alphabet and the spoken sounds are completely different.


So you're basically saying that if reading and writing had nothing to do with learning languages Asian native speakers should have no problem learning English.

Same as your command of Chinese: if you could properly read and write Chinese you could then consider conducting a business and holding a debate?
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#1493688 - 08/11/10 05:44 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Mirela]
dumdumdiddle Offline
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Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1264
Loc: California
Originally Posted By: Mirela

Honestly, if you left your child half an hour per week in a room with one person speaking only Dutch, how much would he learn in a school year (roughly 34 encounters meaning a total of 17 hours scattered throughout the year)? When would he be able to carry a fluent conversation in Dutch?

dumdumdiddle,
Could you detail more on the way you approach younger children with the "ear before eye" technique?

I am particularly interested as I have never had students younger than 5.

Do you get students who aren't supported by parents (other than bringing them to the lesson and possibly buying a keyboard for practice at home)?


The program that I teach requires that the parent attend and participate in each lesson with the child, becoming a partner with the teacher. Parents also help with practicing at home on a daily basis. As the student progresses the parent isn't quite as involved and the student will eventually surpass the parent in ear training and note reading. However, even in my advanced group classes, parents will still attend each week. They know what's expected for practicing, they know how the pieces are supposed to sound, etc...

It's completely different from the way that I was taught, where Mom dropped me off each week for lessons and had no clue what I was doing or if what I played at home was correct or not.
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#1493693 - 08/11/10 05:50 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: dumdumdiddle]
Mirela Offline
Full Member

Registered: 06/29/10
Posts: 65
Loc: Bucharest, Romania
thanks a lot dumdumdiddle!

This is the kind of information I actually wanted to see. You say you don't teach Suzuki though.

Do you have your personal approach or is it a formal approach adopted by other teachers as well?

I keep "clinging" to Suzuki because it's the only ear before eye approach that I know of. We don't have Suzuki in Romania. Mind you, John Thompson is utterly progressive here (and shunned for being "too slow")!

(OT, but just to avoid misunderstandings: I'm talking about JT's Easiest piano course. Somehow I am under the impression that evertime I say JT to people in the USA they always think Modern course for the piano which is much faster paced)
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#1493700 - 08/11/10 05:56 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Mirela]
dumdumdiddle Offline
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Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1264
Loc: California
The curriculum I use is called Harmony Road Music Course. Other programs that share a similar philosophy are Music For Young Children and Yamaha.

www.harmonyroadmusic.com

www.yamaha.com

www.myc.com
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#1493730 - 08/11/10 06:46 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Ebony and Ivory]
eweiss Offline
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Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
Originally Posted By: Ebony and Ivory
Originally Posted By: Ben Crosland

And also, I believe I speak for all of us here when I refute your ridiculous suggestion that we "literally force note-reading down the throats of our young". You do understand what the word 'literally' means, don't you? wink


Indeed, I was thinking the same thing Ben thumb

It's not ridiculous Ben. Note reading is what most piano teachers teach. They teach it because people want to learn the classical repertoire. Nothing wrong with that. Literally.
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#1493753 - 08/11/10 07:23 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: eweiss]
Morodiene Online   content
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Originally Posted By: eweiss
Originally Posted By: Ebony and Ivory
Originally Posted By: Ben Crosland

And also, I believe I speak for all of us here when I refute your ridiculous suggestion that we "literally force note-reading down the throats of our young". You do understand what the word 'literally' means, don't you? wink


Indeed, I was thinking the same thing Ben thumb

It's not ridiculous Ben. Note reading is what most piano teachers teach. They teach it because people want to learn the classical repertoire. Nothing wrong with that. Literally.

What is "ridiculous" is the notion that we are cramming something down people's throats. I do not cram. If it's a matter of having to cram something, then they are with the wrong teacher.
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#1493771 - 08/11/10 07:46 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Morodiene]
eweiss Offline
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Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
You're right. Poor choice of words. frown
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#1493801 - 08/11/10 08:36 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: eweiss]
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3158
Originally Posted By: eweiss

And also, I believe Note reading is what most piano teachers teach. They teach it because people want to learn the classical repertoire. Nothing wrong with that. Literally.


Wrong. Piano teachers teach note reading because people want to learn classical, and jazz, and pop, and gospel, and every other style of music that is written in the language of music, i.e. notation.
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#1493832 - 08/11/10 09:30 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: rocket88]
eweiss Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
Really? You mean someone wanting to learn Gospel, Jazz, or pop wants to learn note reading before a chord-based approach? That's unusual. smile
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#1493835 - 08/11/10 09:35 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: Mirela]
Wizard of Oz Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/12/09
Posts: 873
Originally Posted By: Mirela
Originally Posted By: Wizard of Oz
Asian native speakers have a much harder time learning English because Chinese, Korea, Japanese, Thai... don't use an alphabet and the spoken sounds are completely different.


So you're basically saying that if reading and writing had nothing to do with learning languages Asian native speakers should have no problem learning English.

Same as your command of Chinese: if you could properly read and write Chinese you could then consider conducting a business and holding a debate?


No, what I'm saying is that reading/writing and speaking are 2 completely different skill sets when learning a language.

Written Chinese is made up of characters, not words from an alphabet. If you didn't know how to say the character in spoken form then you would not even be able to read or guess the word. Whereas if it were a language with an alphabet, you could guess phonetically, even though you don't know the word.

Asian speakers have a hard time with English because the phonetic sounds are completely different. Just like you would have a very difficult time if you tried to learn spoken Chinese right now. You would have no basis for the sounds used.

The reading and writing supplement the spoken language. I would have to learn the vocab verbally first. I probably could become business fluent in Chinese if I studied hard, even if I couldn't read or write 1 word. They are 2 completely separate things.


Same with music, btw. A blind person can learn music just as well as one who can sight-read, because music is an aural art, not dependent on reading. Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles, Marcus Roberts, George Shearing....plenty others.

How do you think they learned music? By listening alot and emulating the SOUND on the piano.

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#1493842 - 08/11/10 09:48 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: eweiss]
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3158
Originally Posted By: eweiss
Really? You mean someone wanting to learn Gospel, Jazz, or pop wants to learn note reading before a chord-based approach? That's unusual. smile


Reading music is not some kind of disease that that one must avoid to be able to play the piano.

FYI, chords are made of notes, so being able to read notes can only help you read/play chords.

Here's a shocker: Its not all-or-nothing, i.e. Its not either "a chord-based approach", or "a note reading approach." Chords can be learned along with reading music, in fact that is the normal approach. Check out one of Alfred's very popular Adult books...chords come in very quickly.

The ability to read notes is thus helpful for all styles of music, including reading from fake books, where a lot of pop and jazz standards are available.

Suggestion: How about applying your talents to writing materials that include reading music...then you would not have to constantly pop up on these forums on a regular basis calling into question classical music, notation, reading music, conventional music teachers, etc...and you might even make more money.

Just a thought.
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#1493848 - 08/11/10 09:55 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: rocket88]
eweiss Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/28/09
Posts: 2393
Loc: Beautiful San Diego, CA
Originally Posted By: rocket88
Suggestion: How about applying your talents to writing materials that include reading music...then you would not have to constantly pop up on these forums on a regular basis calling into question classical music, notation, reading music, conventional music teachers, etc...and you might even make more money.

Just a thought.

That would go against what I believe about teaching piano. Plus, I already wrote a book that outlines my teaching philosophy. It's called Free to be Creative at the Piano .' As far as making money goes, I'm not too worried about it. smile
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#1493852 - 08/11/10 10:01 PM Re: Do Most Piano Teachers Have it Backwards? [Re: eweiss]
rocket88 Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3158


smile
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