Showing posts with label Piano Lessons. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Piano Lessons. Show all posts

Friday, April 13, 2018

7 Tips for Effective MUSICAL PRACTICE

English: A piano player who lives only for it....
A piano player who lives only for it. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
The quality of your practice is much more important than the quantity. The old saying "practice makes perfect" is only true if the practice itself is perfect. Here are 7 tips to help make your practice more effective and efficient. 

Practice motions slowly 

The muscular memory of our bodies allows us to physically carry out patterns of motion with little or no conscious involvement. Examples of muscular memory include walking, riding a bicycle, typing, and of course playing a musical instrument. 

In order to develop this memory, the muscles require training in the form of repeated conscious guidance from the mind. First, the mind must learn the pattern. Then the mind must "teach" the pattern to the muscles. 

The mind initially must control all the motions of the muscles. The more controlled and precise the motions, the more quickly the muscles will develop muscle memory. 

Slow practice also allows the mind to teach "antagonistic muscles" to relax. Antagonistic muscles are those that move in opposite directions. By relaxing antagonistic muscles you can reduce tension and facilitate faster and easier performance and avoid potential injury. 

Practice in small cells 

A "practice cell" is simply a finite series of motions. Musical cells can correspond to anything from a few notes to an entire work. When practicing, it is important to practice small cells of just a few notes. Practicing small cells limits the amount of information the muscles have to learn at one time. It also facilitates the mind's focus and concentration. 

Link the end of one cell to the beginning of the next 

To help the muscles develop a sense of continuum throughout the piece of music, the last motion in a cell should be the first motion of the following cell. 

Practice each cell in bursts 

Once the muscles have learned a pattern, they will be capable of executing it without conscious control. Initiate the pattern through a conscious command and allow the muscles to execute it in a burst. 


Don't practice mistakes 

For every repetition required to learn a pattern of motion, it takes 7 times the number of repetitions to change the pattern. If in the course of your practice you make an error, stop. Review in your mind the pattern. And further, reduce the speed of your motions. 

Pause between repetitions 

When dealing with repetitive activities, the mind is better able to focus when the repetitions are broken up by short pauses. After two or three repetitions, pause for about 30 seconds to regain focus. 

Take frequent breaks and don't "over-practice" 

B.F. Skinner and other experts have found that the mind's ability to learn drops significantly after prolonged intense concentration. Research shows that studying too long (i.e. more than four hours) can deplete chemicals in the brain necessary for learning. Therefore, it is best to take frequent breaks (a 5-minute break about every 20-25 minutes) and practice no more than 4 hours consecutively. 

By applying these techniques, you can dramatically improve the quality of your practice. You'll be able to use your time more efficiently and increase the effectiveness of your practice.





Sunday, October 29, 2017

Five Fingers Same Position Notes Reading Method

Nederlands: vingers/hand Categorie:Wikipedia:A...Hand  (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There are beginner piano books begin by introducing five notes i.e. CDEFG in right hand (RH) and CBAGF in left (LH) by using the same fingers position such as on RH note C played by thumb, D played by the index finger, etc. On LH note C played by thumb, B played by the index finger, and so on. I called "five fingers same position".

The benefit is before added the new note, beginners have practiced some similar exercises so they, especially kids will not be confused by rhythm, names, and positions of notes.

Because of many exercises that using the same fingers position, mostly kids tend to read the fingers numbers as notes positions. For instance, they mean no. 1 on RH is C - always played by thumb, no. 2 is D - always played by the index finger and so on, likewise on LH.

In early lessons, students seem fluent in notes reading but the problem comes when start playing pieces with no "five fingers the same position".

If students have to use "five fingers same position" books, as teachers, we have to explain from the first lesson that one note can be played by any fingers and fingers numbers are never changed such as on RH no.1 always for thumb, no. 2 always for index finger and so on, likewise on LH.

To make students remember the fingers numbers quickly, we can ask them to play as fast as they can such as "Play C with finger number 1 …. Now play C with finger number 2 and so on". The kids will love this fun game! Then ask them to play the same piece with any fingers by writing a new fingering on their book. For instance, for RH play C with finger number 2, D with finger number 3 and so on.
There is no perfect method in notes reading, as teachers, we can only find the suitable one for each student by merging one method with another. I prefer using "five fingers same position" book at first lesson by using any kinds of fingers positions, not just as written in the book.



It is much benefit and easier to learn right at first than re-learn after made mistakes. However, if students have made misunderstandings on notes reading, no matter with our ‘own’ students that have been taking lessons with us since their first day on a piano lesson or transferred ones, just do not ever blame them, their old teachers (for transferred ones) and ourselves especially beginner teachers. It will not make notes reading for students better.

The solution is re-teaching them as the first lesson. Of course, it needs much time, patiently and often rather difficult to train ‘a new habit’. The students could be frustrate and complain but with a fun game as I mentioned above, kids usually enjoy the lesson again. It happens on teens or adults (so far, I never found yet), we can support them by positive words so that they have ‘new spirit’ to continue their lesson. Moreover, as teachers, we should not ever stop learning.

Author: Sujanti Djuanda


Monday, December 19, 2016

PLAY PIANO in a Flash – Is it Possible?

Is it really possible to learn to play piano in a flash? That would be impossible because according to some expert pianists, it took them years to learn their lessons and play effectively. However, there is one way to improve your learning process in a flash.

You might be wondering how, right? Well, it is really simple. You have to take note of your posture. This is very important when playing the piano. Try to observe pianists; they have great postures and they seem to play with ease at all times. Without proper posture, you will not learn the basic playing techniques and even if you do, you can’t play the instrument comfortably.

Piano, keys
Piano, keys (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Some say that it is easier to teach children when it comes to posture but even if you’re an adult, you can still improve your posture. If you can do this, you can play comfortably and with flexibility.

1. Try to imagine yourself sitting and you’re about to play the piano. See yourself as a giraffe; feeling as if your neck and head can reach the ceiling.

2. The next thing that you have to do is to stretch your arms. Try to imagine that the arms are the wings of an angel. Stretch your arms to the sides until your elbows are horizontally pointed.

3. Now, focus your attention to your hands. Look at your fingers. Move them just like the legs of a spider. Walk each of your fingers to the piano keys.

4. You have to sit on the bench with ease and confidence. Try to think that you’re the best pianist there is and that you know all your pieces well.

5. When sitting on the bench, your elbows should be located right in front of the stomach. Stretch your arms until your fingers touch the piano keys. Never scoot forward. Sit as if you’re glued to the bench.

Did you notice anything on the five posture pointers mentioned? Which word is used many times? The word ‘imagine’ is used most of the time. This is very effective especially if you’re still a child but it can also work for adults. Try using your imagination. This way, your body and mind will connect instantly and you can play naturally.

The next time you practice on your piano, try follow these pointers. Follow them one by one until you finally learn. These pointers are truly effective if you can follow properly. Even your piano teacher or instruction manuals will say the same thing. Here’s a question for you – have you ever seen a pianist who slouch? That would be quite funny and irritating, right?



Start by learning to have a good posture. This is one of the starting points to learn to play the piano in a flash. But all the other lessons should be taken one step at a time. You have to retain all the lessons. That is why you have to review your past lessons often to make sure that you still know them. You can’t simply forget past lessons because you will need them in the future lessons that you’re going to have.

The truth is, you can’t play piano in a flash. But with a little improvement in terms of your posture, you can go a long way. Take note of your posture now and check if you have a good one.


Rocket Piano - Learn Piano

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Step By Step PIANO LESSONS

If you are new to learning the piano and you’re not sure quite where to start, then you will be needing some really excellent step by step piano lessons to help you get you started.

The news is all good. Such a system is not hard to find, especially in today’s world with the internet being readily available to most of us.

English: One APEX kid teaching another what he...
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

However, there can be a problem! There are several downloadable courses on the internet which offer tuition on teaching you to learn to play the piano. Most of them offer good value - some better than others. Most of them will also allow you access to some free lessons to get you started.

So what - you want to know - is this problem?  The problem is in finding step by step piano lessons that will be suited to you in particular. What should you be looking for? What is the  cost of the course? What length of time will the course take?

Here are some pointers for you to consider.

1. Does the course contain lessons for beginners.
2. Does the course proceed with lessons for intermediate students and
advanced students.
3. Will some free lessons be offered to you before you part with your money.
4. How long does the course take to complete.
5. Does the course provide lessons on how to read sheet music.
6. Can the lessons be adapted for both keyboard and acoustic piano.
7. Are the step by step piano lessons simple to understand and to follow.
8. Is the price of the course reasonable and good value for money.

Another important consideration is that the course should contain an element of fun! It is very important that the course contains some light hearted aspects, so that boredom doesn’t set in and you feel like giving up.

And yet another consideration is - are you are able to complete these step by step piano lessons at your own speed, so that you don’t feel pressure or stress. This is a commonly heard complaint when it comes to taking conventional piano lessons off line, so be sure that there are no time limits for finishing the course.

There are many courses available for download on line, so do your research based on your own individual needs, and your particular financial ability. Step by step piano lessons are a really good idea as they are usually quite simple to follow, and geared towards getting you to the stage of an accomplished advanced pianist with minimal stress.

Lynda Mekalick is an internet marketer from "down under" - New Zealand. A passionate pianist, Lynda highly recommends the Rocket Piano system of learning for anyone wishing to learn to play the piano well while having fun along the way. Go grab your first lessons free now at http://www.rocketpiano1.com



Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Easy Left Hand PIANO CHORDS, Chord Books and Chord Sheets For Beginners

As a music teacher I am frequently asked how to play left hand easy piano chords when learning to play the piano, electronic keyboard and organ. Well the first thing you need to do when learning chords is to learn the popular or basic chords first. These are major chords, minor chords and seventh chords. These piano or keyboard chords are basically the foundations on which other chords are built. For instance let's look at the C family of chords:
C
C6
C7
C9
C11
C13
All the chords above are basically a C chord with an added 6th, 7th, 9th, 11th or 13th. So when learning chords it's important to learn the basic C chord first. If you come across a C11 or C13 and you don't know what it is, just play the C chord. That's not to say you shouldn't eventually learn the 11th and 13th chords, but for beginners, just playing the C chord is adequate and harmonically correct and it means you can keep playing the piano or keyboard without stopping, which is what every learner wants to do.

Scott D. Davis
Photo  by ohlin 

The other thing to consider if you are learning on the electronic keyboard is that if you use the Auto Chord system that many of these keyboards have, then you won't be able to play the more advanced keyboard chords because the keyboard can't recognise certain chords, such as 11th and 13th chords.
Actually, keeping the amount of chords you learn to a minimum will help you to play more pieces of music and the way to do this is to learn how to substitute one chord for another as mentioned above. 

For instance, if you learn to substitute all 9th chords for 7th chords, then this would cut your learning time by a hundred percent, obviously you have to learn the 7th chords first, there are 12 major chords with a seventh and 12 Minor chords with a seventh and we can even reduce this further. Instead of learning all 12 major and minor chords all at once, just learn what you need. You do this with the help of key signatures. Most beginners start learning to play in the key of C and there are only a few easy piano chords associated with this key, they are, C, G, Dm, Am and sometimes F. If you pick pieces of music in this key you can learn these chords faster. When you are accomplished with those chords move on to the next key which is normally G.

This is the easiest and most enjoyable way of learning to play, it means you get to play music virtually straight away and you can move at your own pace, learn as many easy piano chords as you personally want. Many people just want to sit down and play a few tunes, nothing fancy and if you are one of those people then this is the way to go. Remember you don't need to learn a ton of chords be able to play music, just learn what you need and enjoy yourself.