So instead of continuing with my original plans (which was going to be more on 'Messy Piano') I have decided to share more of the Piano Curriculum with you.
In overall structure the Piano Curriculum has four starter levels (A, B, C, D). Following these it progresses as follows: Grades 1 - 2, Grades 2 - 3, Grades 3 - 4, Grades 4 - 5 and then Grade 6, Grade 7 and Grade 8. After careful consideration I decided to use the grade structure as that is what most piano teachers in the UK are familiar with. I could however, just as easily called them Levels 1 - 2!
So here is the very start of the Piano Curriculum, Levels A and B. As you can see from the outline I have provided, this starts at the very beginning and assumes nothing! I find this very useful when taking on a new, young beginner, when I use the skills and concepts found in Level A as a way of working out what the pupil already has in place and what needs to be covered.
You will notice that there is a whole section that covers singing and pitch relationships eg. finding the singing voice, using singing names (soh-mi). As a Kodaly practitioner I find it an invaluable way of helping all beginners to develop an understanding of the building blocks of music. In a similar way to when we learn to speak and then read, it is the relationships between pitches and rhythms that really need to be established early on. There isn't the space to go into this in more detail at this point but if you are interested I suggest you go on a course to find out more. The Voices Foundation run a 5 day course every year and the British Kodaly Academy are very pro-active in organising and promoting courses.
It is of course up to you to decide how to use the Piano Curriculum but one thing I would really recommend is comparing what it to your current tutor book, also keeping in mind the 5 top tips for choosing tutor books mentioned in a previous blog.
As before all comments as regards the usefulness (or otherwise) of the Piano Curriculum for beginners are most welcome!