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#2056372 - 03/29/13 05:22 PM Exercises
MiguelSousa Offline
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Registered: 03/29/09
Posts: 100
Hello again

What kind of exercises do you use before Hannon ? I am looking for easy 5 finger exercises.

Thanks

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#2056481 - 03/29/13 08:28 PM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
rocket88 Offline
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Registered: 09/04/06
Posts: 3158
Hanon #1 is about as easy as it gets...basically 5 notes in a row, at least for the ascending (RH) and descending (LH) parts.
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#2056668 - 03/30/13 04:18 AM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
Ben Crosland Offline
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Registered: 03/11/10
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A Dozen A Day
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#2056714 - 03/30/13 07:42 AM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
pianopaws Offline
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Registered: 03/18/13
Posts: 71
Loc: North Carolina, USA
How about learning the major and minor pentascales, meaning the first five notes of each major and minor scale played with fingers 12345? Good practice for incorporating sharps and flats into your exercises, and once mastered they can be played legato, staccato, forte, piano, with a crescendo, etc.

I also second the recommendation for the Dozen a Day books.
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#2057607 - 04/01/13 12:54 AM Re: Exercises [Re: Ben Crosland]
RachelEDNC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/11/09
Posts: 79
Originally Posted By: Ben Crosland
A Dozen A Day


I second the above. He is referring to Dozen a Day by Edna Mae Burnam. If you are teaching students using another method book, they correspond well with those (Level 1 of DoD with Level 1 Faber Adventures, etc).

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#2057783 - 04/01/13 01:13 PM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
Minniemay Offline
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Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
Before suggesting anything, one should know the purpose of the exercises.
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#2057794 - 04/01/13 01:30 PM Re: Exercises [Re: RachelEDNC]
Ann in Kentucky Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
Originally Posted By: RachelEDNC
If you are teaching students using another method book, they correspond well with those (Level 1 of DoD with Level 1 Faber Adventures, etc).


Dozen a Day 1 does not correlate well with Faber 1--it's too advanced for a Faber 1 student. I suggest you look over the Dozen a Day series. It starts with a mini book, next level is preparatory, then Level 1.

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#2057997 - 04/01/13 07:11 PM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
RachelEDNC Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/11/09
Posts: 79
I have a few students doing Dozen a Day with Level 1 of Piano Adventures. I start them after they can already do C, G, and D scales (one octave, hands together). For most this happens about 1/3 of the way through the Faber book. This is more for students who are at least in 2nd grade (not any younger). I think technical ability can precede reading ability. Most of the dozen a day exercises, I am helping them with reading and we find patterns before beginning exercises. (I also do *most* of the rhythms by ear) The kids seem to love the books and think they are more like "big-kid" music than the Faber books.

Sorry, this is definitely dependent on the child and the teacher. I do a lot of listening and general patterned exercises with students along with just reading. I should have made this more clear. Just handing the student Dozen a Day and sending them home would probably be a bit much.


Edited by RachelEDNC (04/01/13 07:15 PM)

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#2058012 - 04/01/13 07:54 PM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
pianoSD Offline
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Registered: 02/20/13
Posts: 57
Loc: San Diego, CA
Not to beat a dead horse, but I second Dozen a Day. The progression of the series is excellent.


Edited by pianoSD (04/01/13 07:54 PM)
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#2060528 - 04/06/13 09:07 PM Re: Exercises [Re: pianoSD]
PApianoteacher Offline
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Registered: 01/27/12
Posts: 36
I have also had very good luck with the Dozen a Day books. Depending on the child, I have done a page or 2 a week, or as much as an entire group at one time.

In between Dozen a Day books I usually work in major and minor 5 finger patterns, scales, and arpeggios.

For slower students who struggle with note reading, I have also had luck with the Finger Power series- I have them say the note names as they play them.

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#2060532 - 04/06/13 09:26 PM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
Miguel Rey Offline
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Registered: 02/03/13
Posts: 292
Skip the Hanon all together and go with Alexander Peskanov's Russian Technical Regimen. Some more difficult for the beginner but still plenty of practical studies that you will see in a lot of the music you play. While his regimen is nothing new and I'm sure you could scavenge up everything in the book or even write it down yourself but for the money and time it's worth it because it's nicely layed out with fingering throughout and very detailed instructions. Have yet to see anything that remotely resembles Hanon exercises in any serious piece of music. I'm sure Hanon doesn't hurt, just not a big help for me. Kinda like doing aerobics if you plan on running marathons, much better to just jog...
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#2060552 - 04/06/13 10:22 PM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
Minniemay Offline
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Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
One shouldn't teach technique one isn't familiar with.
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#2061086 - 04/08/13 12:48 AM Re: Exercises [Re: Minniemay]
Bluoh Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 421
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
One shouldn't teach technique one isn't familiar with.

Well you've gotta start somewhere... and experiment once in a while. How else will you grow as a teacher, pianist, and human being?

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#2061092 - 04/08/13 01:40 AM Re: Exercises [Re: Bluoh]
keystring Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11657
Loc: Canada
Originally Posted By: Bluoh
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
One shouldn't teach technique one isn't familiar with.

Well you've gotta start somewhere... and experiment once in a while. How else will you grow as a teacher, pianist, and human being?

Not by experimenting on a student, I would hope.

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#2061104 - 04/08/13 02:26 AM Re: Exercises [Re: Miguel Rey]
musicpassion Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/30/12
Posts: 944
Loc: California, USA
Originally Posted By: Miguel Rey
go with Alexander Peskanov's Russian Technical Regimen. Some more difficult for the beginner but still plenty of practical studies that you will see in a lot of the music you play. While his regimen is nothing new and I'm sure you could scavenge up everything in the book or even write it down yourself but for the money and time it's worth it because it's nicely layed out with fingering throughout and very detailed instructions.


Who publishes this collection?
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#2061107 - 04/08/13 02:32 AM Re: Exercises [Re: keystring]
musicpassion Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/30/12
Posts: 944
Loc: California, USA
Originally Posted By: keystring
Originally Posted By: Bluoh
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
One shouldn't teach technique one isn't familiar with.

Well you've gotta start somewhere... and experiment once in a while. How else will you grow as a teacher, pianist, and human being?

Not by experimenting on a student, I would hope.

Experimenting is an interesting word.
For me it kind of conjures the image of wierd lab experiments with rats and monkeys.

Staying with the scientific analogy, Medical Doctors call their work "practicing" medicine. I think that's a better term.

Each student is a unique individual, and sometimes the educational plan succeeds best by adjusting to that unique individual. I consider that part of "practicing" the art of teaching.
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#2061191 - 04/08/13 08:42 AM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
keystring Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11657
Loc: Canada
Minniemay had said that one should not teach technique that one is not familiar with. Depending on what is meant by "technique", I agree with this. Your medical "practitioner" has studied medicine, and then had an internship where he/she observed other doctors, and was observed. There should be understanding of how technique works and how the body works before setting out to teach, or you can hurt someone, or if not that, create future problems.

If you do have that knowledge, you still need to "experiment", using what you know, to help students since each person is different. But the knowledge should be there. That is what I am agreeing with.

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#2061203 - 04/08/13 09:31 AM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
Technique is a hands-on physical thing. If the book is trying to introduce new physical things, it's best to work with someone who has experience with them. A book cannot teach this adequately on its own.

It seems that so many teachers are looking for the right book to do the teaching. It's not the books -- it's the teacher. A book is only a medium.
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#2061210 - 04/08/13 10:13 AM Re: Exercises [Re: musicpassion]
TimR Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3190
Loc: Virginia, USA
Originally Posted By: musicpassion
Originally Posted By: keystring
Originally Posted By: Bluoh
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
One shouldn't teach technique one isn't familiar with.

Well you've gotta start somewhere... and experiment once in a while. How else will you grow as a teacher, pianist, and human being?

Not by experimenting on a student, I would hope.

Experimenting is an interesting word.
For me it kind of conjures the image of wierd lab experiments with rats and monkeys.



For me the image is more of paying careful attention over a period of time to what seems to work and what doesn't. We know from design of science experiments that memory tends to be selective, sometimes extremely so, and that keeping good records can greatly assist this process. It takes a while to become a skilled teacher partly because you need to watch a student develop over time, but partly because you need to have experience with many different individuals who react in different ways, and you don't get all types the same year.
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#2061213 - 04/08/13 10:16 AM Re: Exercises [Re: keystring]
TimR Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3190
Loc: Virginia, USA
Originally Posted By: keystring
Your medical "practitioner" has studied medicine, and then had an internship where he/she observed other doctors, and was observed.


I bolded a piece of the snip from keystring.

I would suggest being observed is the single most beneficial thing one could add to speed the process of gaining teaching mastery. And, one of the most threatening!
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#2061335 - 04/08/13 03:43 PM Re: Exercises [Re: Minniemay]
Gary D. Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4785
Loc: South Florida
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
Technique is a hands-on physical thing. If the book is trying to introduce new physical things, it's best to work with someone who has experience with them. A book cannot teach this adequately on its own.

It seems that so many teachers are looking for the right book to do the teaching. It's not the books -- it's the teacher. A book is only a medium.

So right!
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Piano Teacher

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#2061337 - 04/08/13 03:46 PM Re: Exercises [Re: TimR]
Gary D. Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4785
Loc: South Florida
Originally Posted By: TimR
Originally Posted By: keystring
Your medical "practitioner" has studied medicine, and then had an internship where he/she observed other doctors, and was observed.


I bolded a piece of the snip from keystring.

I would suggest being observed is the single most beneficial thing one could add to speed the process of gaining teaching mastery. And, one of the most threatening!

Why threatening?
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#2061354 - 04/08/13 04:37 PM Re: Exercises [Re: TimR]
AZNpiano Online   sleepy
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5459
Loc: Orange County, CA
Originally Posted By: TimR
I would suggest being observed is the single most beneficial thing one could add to speed the process of gaining teaching mastery. And, one of the most threatening!

I would suggest otherwise. As a classroom teacher, I've been observed for my formal and informal evaluations countless times, by first-time administrators, master teachers, and experts who have been teaching for 40 years. What have these observations done for me? Not much. In fact, it was quite entertaining to have administrators who know nothing about music to observe and "evaluate" a music teacher.
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#2061357 - 04/08/13 04:40 PM Re: Exercises [Re: Minniemay]
AZNpiano Online   sleepy
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5459
Loc: Orange County, CA
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
It seems that so many teachers are looking for the right book to do the teaching. It's not the books -- it's the teacher. A book is only a medium.

But a very important medium.

Take those Suzuki books for example. There's only so much a non-Suzuki teacher can do with those books.
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#2061381 - 04/08/13 05:08 PM Re: Exercises [Re: AZNpiano]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
It seems that so many teachers are looking for the right book to do the teaching. It's not the books -- it's the teacher. A book is only a medium.

But a very important medium.

Take those Suzuki books for example. There's only so much a non-Suzuki teacher can do with those books.


Then I would suggest it is a poor teacher . . .
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#2061505 - 04/08/13 09:19 PM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
ezpiano.org Offline
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Registered: 05/10/11
Posts: 1002
Loc: Irvine, CA
Just to add on for what ANZ and MM said here...
Of course teacher is more important than books (medium), but a very poor design method book will also kill a good teacher's teaching, she has to constantly seek supplemental to complete the current method book. So, if a method book (medium) is already excellent in design of its pedagogical sense, a good teacher can save a lot of time for seeking supplemental but put more concentration into teaching the book.
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#2061554 - 04/08/13 10:05 PM Re: Exercises [Re: AZNpiano]
TimR Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3190
Loc: Virginia, USA
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Originally Posted By: TimR
I would suggest being observed is the single most beneficial thing one could add to speed the process of gaining teaching mastery. And, one of the most threatening!

As a classroom teacher, I've been observed for my formal and informal evaluations countless times, by first-time administrators, master teachers, and experts who have been teaching for 40 years. What have these observations done for me? Not much.


That seems quite unusual to me. Usually the only people who don't benefit from some constructive criticism are those either observed by an utterly incompetent person (and sometimes even they notice something you can use) or are simply unreceptive.

When I was in grad school for Clinical Psychology, we all had to bring in tape recordings of therapy sessions for our peers and professor to critique. None of us liked that! but it was necessary part of becoming a professional. It would be even more useful 5 or 10 years later, when we had the experience to take the next step to mastery, but it's rarely available.

Can a piano student learn to play completely on their own, without a teacher occasionally observing and critiquing? Sure, but .... most don't. Can a teacher learn to teach completely on her own? Sure, most do. But.....many could improve.

It's very hard to interact with another human in real time, with full attention, and have the ability to also observe your own actions. Each process interferes with the other. That's why another person is useful, even if not expert; but of course the more skilled the observer the better.

Once you're "good enough," learning stops. Many become competent, few become masters or even expert. Time alone is necessary but not sufficient.

I'm finishing my 4th year directing a handbell ensemble. I made steady improvements the first three years, but not that I can tell this year. So now I'm going to find a music teacher who can sit in and coach a bit, and see if i can get to the next level. I'm also going to video rehearsals for later analysis. I know I won't like doing that, but I see it as necessary.
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#2061659 - 04/09/13 02:22 AM Re: Exercises [Re: TimR]
Gary D. Online   content
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/30/08
Posts: 4785
Loc: South Florida
Originally Posted By: TimR
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Originally Posted By: TimR
I would suggest being observed is the single most beneficial thing one could add to speed the process of gaining teaching mastery. And, one of the most threatening!

As a classroom teacher, I've been observed for my formal and informal evaluations countless times, by first-time administrators, master teachers, and experts who have been teaching for 40 years. What have these observations done for me? Not much.


That seems quite unusual to me.

Not to me. Have you ever spent any time going through what AZN has gone through? Do you have any idea of how many nitwits are around with degree A B and C but who have never spent a year in a classroom actually teaching?

I would suggest that most of the valuable insights come from other students - or students themselves - and even more often from parents who are IN the lessons and observe.

I get incredible ideas from my students and the parents of young students, who brainstorm with me in lessons.
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#2061743 - 04/09/13 07:50 AM Re: Exercises [Re: Gary D.]
TimR Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3190
Loc: Virginia, USA
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#2061818 - 04/09/13 10:59 AM Re: Exercises [Re: MiguelSousa]
keystring Offline
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Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11657
Loc: Canada
TimR, I read the article some years ago.

I have also been under observation as a teacher on various occasions. The first is the obvious one that every teacher goes through when they do their "practice teaching" (internship). You begin by observing the master teacher, and then you get feedback during your own teaching. I interned with 5 teachers, the last being a specialist in "French immersion" teaching. Once in the profession there was the school principal during the probationary period, superintendent of schools, and specialist in learning disabilities.

Useful feedback came from people who were highly competent in my field. A good teacher is also attuned to her students and others, so this feedback to my style and personality into account. Since they knew their craft inside-out, they could see the strengths in how I worked, and also had suggestions for weak areas. The best of these were the immersion expert, and the LD specialist. The specialist pointed out something good I'd been doing instinctively, namely using both visual and auditory cues in classroom teaching. This was good for the mix of visual and auditory learners.

Useless or harmful feedback came first of all from poor quality teachers. One, during my internship, did not have control of his classroom - my academic advisor assessed his assessment my pointing out the shoes scattered in the hallway which was "typical" of this. The school principal wrote a glowing report during my trial period because they were desperate for teachers to stay in that poor region, and then a scathing report when he had a pregnant teacher on hand who was about to get tenure if he was supportive. Neither the glowing report, nor the scathing one, were useful.

For those running school systems, this or that approach will be in fashion. These days, over here, it's using red and blue counters to teach negative numbers - nothing messes up kids worse. Senior teacher told me to appear to be doing the fashionable thing, but in my real teaching, do what works. If you are inspected for teaching per fashion, that's useless stuff.

A superintendent ---- who obviously does not teach ---- wanted to see my "matrix". No teacher I have talked to has ever heard of a matrix. I created one. It was marginally useful.

Useless advice comes from those who have read books about how it should be done, or who have built theories on how it should be done, without actually doing the work themselves, seeing what works, what the real obstacles are, and the real solutions. It also comes from those who have an agenda. Useless advice can also come from colleagues who have developed their own rigid way of doing things, and think everyone must do things the way they do.

Quote:
Do you completely dismiss this article then?

How is that article contrary to the idea set forth, of listening to the feedback of parents and students, in one-on-one teaching? Isn't that the same thing?

I wrote of my experience as a classroom teacher. But once I got into one-on-one, I found the best feedback came from the students themselves. This is especially so when you teach a number of students, and the majority tells you the same thing.

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