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Scales and Transposition: An Invitation for Improvisation

Playing 5-finger scales has significant value for early-level pianists. Randall demonstrates how this innovative book helps students chart progress through all major and minor 5-finger scales, cross-hand arpeggios, and primary chords. Engaging teacher duets for each key are used for scale exercises. Students also enjoy improvisation activities for each key with creative prompts to inspire […]

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One Musical Barnyard!

Establishing a natural, curved, strong, and flexible hand position is the basis of keyboard technique. Playing with a braced third finger is an effective approach. Both arch and fingertip are supported. Using a non-legato touch at the beginning helps direct the arm weight from the shoulder. “The Pecking Rooster” and “The Pecking Hen” explore the […]

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Birthday Train

Nancy introduces the “Birthday Train” song through playfulness and imagination. The twins gaze at the pictures in the lesson book and catch the excitement of Carlo’s birthday celebration. As the audio track is played, the girls are engaged with active listening, as they pair body movement with lyrics. From My First Piano Adventure, Lesson Book A, […]

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Princess or Monster?

How easily a princess can become a monster! Rests were introduced on the preceding page, and a tryout on the closed lid highlights the bits of silence after “monster” and “dungeon.” Since the melody has many skips, checking the finger patterns prepares David for the coordination required. A monster demands a more ominous accompaniment, and […]

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Relaxing in Contrary Motion

In this video, Nancy coaches Philip on his 16th note, 2-octave contrary motion scales. The 8th note added in between allows the student to be mindful of relaxing the wrist while playing fast 16th notes. Often times, scale practice focuses solely on fast fingers, however we see artistry displayed along side of technique as Philip phrases […]