Tuesday, July 22, 2014

HomeSchoolPiano {Schoolhouse Crew Review}

Homeschool Piano Review

Addison has quite a lot of musical experience -- some private voice lessons when she was younger, a music theory class when she was a freshman, and several years of singing with the girls chorus (including two lengthy tours). She has even taught herself to play a few piano pieces. Until recently, however, she hasn't had any formal piano training. HomeSchoolPiano gave her the opportunity to learn from an accomplished pianist.

She has been using the HomeSchoolPiano Complete Set of Books this summer. Our lifetime subscription gives us online access to over 20 hours of video instruction (either streaming or downloaded), tracking and quizzes for up to 5 students, unlimited music downloads, and more.

HomeSchoolPiano believes in teaching more than just scales and exercises. Each unit covers technique, rhythm, ear training, sight reading, and improvisation exercises. Addison was excited to be able to see the rhythm, ear training, and sight reading activities because she can see how they will help her improve her singing skills.

The HomeSchoolPiano program consists of four levels -- Core, Book 1, Book 2, and Book 3. Addison decided that Book 2 most closely matched her ability and experience level. It is at an appropriate level in terms of piano playing and learning new pieces rather easily. The theory and reading sections are fairly easy for her because of her chorus experience, but she'd rather not mix-and-match between the lessons even though she could easily access more difficult theory videos now. As a pianist with limited experience, she finds the improvisation activities difficult. It definitely stretches her musically to work on improvisation when she's used to following everything exactly as it was written.

Each lesson has a video that's approximately 10 minutes long, and then the student practices on her own. These videos can either be watched (streaming) on a regular computer or a tablet. If you'd like to use them offline, they can also be downloaded to a portable device. The rhythm, ear training, and sight reading videos were all followed by a short quiz. The quizzes required her to listen to a few bars of music and then match it to the written score. 
I recorded Addison playing Little Willie's Strut. She plays it as written the first time through and then add a bit of improvisation on the second time.

I am quite impressed with how much she has learned in just a few weeks of using the program, and I cannot wait to hear how she improves over the next year.

Addison says that HomeSchool Piano is great! She especially likes the way that it gives her good piano pieces that she can play with a reasonable amount of effort, instead of attempting to play a piece that is so difficult it frustrates her. (In the past, she found pieces that she liked and then worked on them measure by measure for weeks until she could play through it.) Although much of the rhythm instruction is easy, she does admit that it's helping her with syncopation, which will be useful for both piano and chorus. She's looking forward to moving through towards the more difficult concepts in the next book.

HomeSchoolPiano is a complete, well-rounded program that allows Addison to work at her own pace to improve her piano and general musicianship skills. The program is suitable for students of all ages -- I might even try a few lessons myself.

The HomeSchoolPiano Complete program costs $299 and includes lifetime, unlimited access to all four levels of the program. The price can be divided into three monthly payments of $99.97, if you prefer.

Click to read Crew Reviews

Crew Disclaimer

©2009-2014 Through the Calm and Through the Storm. All rights reserved. Photos and content may not be reproduced. http://throughthecalmandthroughthestorm.blogspot.com

1 comment:

  1. From all of us at Jazzedge, we thank you for your unbiased review. Hope you enjoy the lessons!



Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...