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Teaching method for adults #2586969 04/06/14 02:31 PM
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Dave Pierce Offline OP
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Hi All,

Sorry to pop in here after a couple of years away, and immediately ask a question. What can I say? I'm that guy.

Here's the thing -- my girlfriend has always wanted to play piano, and so I'm teaching her. I sort of unkindly assumed that it would be a short-lived passing fad once she discovered the the early learning was somewhat boring and repetitive work. But no -- she has dived in to learning scales and simple melodies, practices every day, and is rapidly outpacing my preparedness to teach her. Yay for her! grin

So, I need to get it together and teach her well. I want to give her a proper foundation, including the ability to read. I feel like I keep jumping ahead to topics that she isn't ready for. I've been playing since I was a small child, and often I "don't know what I know".

Can you guys recommend a good teaching method for adults that I can use with her?

And yes, at some point I will likely hand her off to a teacher other than me. Someone trained and ready for the task. But I don't want to do this yet for various reasons, and she doesn't want a teacher other than me yet either.

Thanks in advance for any help you can give me! thu

--Dave


Make my funk the P-funk.
I wants to get funked up.

My Funk/Jam originals project: http://www.thefunkery.com/
KC Island
Re: Teaching method for adults [Re: Dave Pierce] #2586983 04/06/14 03:28 PM
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allan_evett Offline
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The Alfred's series for adult students is a good, foundational method. I've had several adult students do well with that. The Bastien series - which I used for many years - builds from a similar foundation; though I've discovered that it tends to move a student into deeper water more quickly. So in part it depends on a student's learning style, and how aggressive they are with practicing.
"Adult Piano Adventures", by Faber & Faber, tends to offer a more creative, student-inspiring approach. Doesn't go quite as deep initially, technique-wise, but a lot of folks like it more than Alfred's or Bastien. I started using the Faber method with a couple of students a few years back. Depending on the student, it's usually Alfred's or Faber that I recommend now.
Along with a basic, lesson book I'll typically have the student working in a finger exercise book, and often a blank, staff paper notebook - where I can provide basic music theory instruction, chords / improv type stuff. For finger exercises the Schaum, Fingerpower series is good - especially for beginners, or re-starters with limited experience. The Hanon series is great, but I save that for students who have at least a year's solid practice, or enough prior experience with piano.

While online shopping can get you any of these books quickly, I recommend a trip to a well-stocked, piano oriented music store - one that has a variety of books / sheet music in stock. Being able to look through various methods, even play some examples, is very helpful.


"Someday, we will look back on these days and laugh. It may be a maniacal laugh from within the confines of our padded cells, but it will be a laugh nonetheless" - Mr. Boffo.







Re: Teaching method for adults [Re: Dave Pierce] #2586989 04/06/14 03:33 PM
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MoodyBluesKeys Offline
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On my teacher's advice, I began with Fabers' Adult Piano Adventures books (two books in the series). The difference in these and other books by the same authors is in the choice of songs is more in things that adults would like, and the wording is written for adults.

I also used a number of their Performances books (these contain songs only, graded in different difficulty levels).

As someone who has been playing for years, you may have a lot of knowledge on many things - one thing that needs stressing from the very first is playing in ways that are not harmful to the muscles and tendons in fingers and arms (and overall posture). If you don't have this knowledge, another instructor would be beneficial in that area.


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Re: Teaching method for adults [Re: MoodyBluesKeys] #2586994 04/06/14 03:55 PM
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mate stubb Offline
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My mother taught for many many years, and used Alfred and Bastien to good effect.


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Re: Teaching method for adults [Re: mate stubb] #2587290 04/07/14 04:16 PM
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Dave Pierce Offline OP
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Thanks for all the quick advice, guys! I ignored the "find a music store" advice, because the business hours of the local stores were not convenient for me this week. I did buy a copy of Faber & Faber, and the Fingerpower exercises online. They should be in my mailbox tomorrow.

--Dave


Make my funk the P-funk.
I wants to get funked up.

My Funk/Jam originals project: http://www.thefunkery.com/
Re: Teaching method for adults [Re: Dave Pierce] #2587362 04/07/14 08:59 PM
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Bobadeath Offline
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Originally Posted By: Dave Pierce
I did buy a copy of Faber & Faber


That is the best adult method in my opinion. I sold all of them for years and have tried them all with different students. This one has the most interesting progression of music and the coolest songs in it by a long shot. Many people have fond things to say about the Alfred and Bastien because they have been around longer, but the newer FJH method out does them.


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Re: Teaching method for adults [Re: Bobadeath] #2587369 04/07/14 09:15 PM
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Jazz+ Offline
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I have taught with all of the Faber Levels extensively for many years. It's my favorite, the best tunes and arrangements. Although I wish the beginning kids series (Primer) spent more time in thumbs sharing middle C position. I am not a fan of the Bastien or Alfred series...


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Re: Teaching method for adults [Re: Jazz+] #2587397 04/07/14 10:27 PM
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TrapperJack Offline
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Several years ago in Florence I picked up a two volume set published by Ricordi: Scuola di Pianoforte Acustico E Digitale (Master Piano Acoustic and Digital) by Marco Catarsi (2001). This is a bilingual edition, several years work best used by someone from about their second year of instruction.

The books are saturated in modern music techniques, styles, technical work, styles, etc. It is a core of work that leaves plenty of room for supplementary pieces, modern or traditional training literature.

For adults who are not interested in introductory classical studies, this material is amazingly thorough, and will steadily build a very competent rock/blues/jazz musician who reads, plays chords, effective modern accompaniment, and improvises, or anything else, really, if enough work is done.

Certainly, someone who commits to this book would also make a good fist of Clementi's mountain trek, Bach's two and three part work, or Chopin's preludes and etudes.

Study with a teacher.


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