Piano Lessons – Piano Teacher Versus Online Lessons
I have been asked many times whether it is ok to have piano lessons online or if you should spend more money and get a proper piano tutor to visit your home or even pay to attend a music school. I think you should always look at the advantages and disadvantages and decide what is best for you. The aim of this article is to take you through the various teaching methods and guide you to making a decision that is right for you.
Online piano lessons
There are many websites offering online piano lessons. The trouble is that you don’t really know if the advice you are being given is good or the not. Some websites claim to offer free piano lessons, but when you try to find these free piano lessons, you realize that they are only offering very basic information and you will need to pay to get to the real stuff.
There are some fantastic e-books online that teach you how to play the piano step by step. I won’t mention the names of these e-books as I might be accused of advertising for them or for myself ;-). You can sign up for my newsletter if you want more advice on this – see the ‘About the Author Box below’.
TIP/ Usually the best resources are on the sponsored link section on Google or Yahoo search, this is normally located right at the top of their search engine and also to the right hand side.
The best value for money online course I have seen so far is the Rocket Piano by Ruth Searle. Read more about it here
Online piano lessons are ok if you just want to learn the basics without the commitment of a regular piano teacher. Once you have mastered the online piano lessons then you will definitely need to get yourself a qualified piano teacher or sign up for piano lessons in your local music school if you want to progress any further.
Lessons with a piano teacher
Providing you can find a qualified piano teacher that has a lot of experience and you can justify the expense of this when you are starting out (they don’t come cheap!), then this is a good way to start learning.
There are some disadvantages of having one-on-one lessons with a private piano tutor. Children tend to find individual piano lessons too serious and boring and there are no other children in the lesson to compare progress with.
You can either travel to the teacher’s home or the teacher will travel to you. Having piano lessons in your home is probably the worst thing you can do. Check out the advantages and disadvantages below.
Piano lessons in your home
Lots of distractions
Lessons in piano teacher’s home
You get to have your lesson on a good quality piano
There are no distractions at your piano teacher’s home
You have to travel to the piano teacher’s home (traveling time, transport and parking costs)
Private piano lessons are good, but expensive. Make sure that you can afford to pay for these lessons because you will need to make a regular commitment once a week.
Piano lessons in a music school
Having piano lessons in a music school has many advantages over online piano lessons and private teaching.
Most music schools have qualified piano teachers. Some music schools also offer group teaching which is much cheaper than private lessons. Learning to play piano in groups is also more fun because the other students in the class are usually at a similar level of learning.
From my experience, I find that children and adults learning piano in a group often progress faster in the early stages than if they had a private piano teacher. I believe that this progress is due to either the competitiveness of trying to keep up with others by practicing more during the week or the less serious atmosphere that makes learning more fun than individual piano lessons.
Music schools have a proven teaching system in place. This teaching system is controlled by the principal teacher and head of music. Music schools are normally geared towards students taking examinations, and because of this, piano lessons are structured and well organized.
Having your piano lessons in a music school is the best way to start out and will more likely encourage you to continue learning for a long time. Music school fees are normally less than half the cost of a private piano lesson.
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About the Author
My name is Hejran Seidova. I have been teaching piano for over 15 years and am currently the head of music for the ALL Talents music school in Enfield, North London. You can find information about my music school here: http://www.alltalents.co.uk. You can get free piano playing tips by signing up for my free newsletter here: http://www.alltalents.co.uk/Newsletter.html.
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