[Menvi-discuss] piano methods

Stephanie sim.musicschool at gmail.com
Sun May 5 21:38:55 EDT 2013


How do I join?
Steph


 ----- Original Message -----
From: "STEPHANIE PIECK" <themusicsuite at verizon.net
To: "This is for discussing music and braille 
literacy"<menvi-discuss at menvi.org
Date sent: Sun, 05 May 2013 07:54:01 -0400
Subject: Re: [Menvi-discuss] piano methods

Anyone in any country can join the National Library for the Blind 
(England),
and then you can borrow any of the books in their collection.  
I've done this
with old ABRSM books and am exploring what titles they have for 
books about
piano pedagogy.

Stephanie Pieck
----- Original Message -----
From: "Stephanie" <sim.musicschool at gmail.com
To: "This is for discussing music and braille literacy"
<menvi-discuss at menvi.org
Sent: Saturday, May 04, 2013 11:43 PM
Subject: Re: [Menvi-discuss] piano methods


 Thank you so much.  I will look in to these.  I live in 
Australia, so not
 sure how much i can tap in to these.
 I'd like to build my music colection before starting to teach 
full time.
 Steph


 ----- Original Message -----
 From: "STEPHANIE PIECK" <themusicsuite at verizon.net
 To: "This is for discussing music and braille
 literacy"<menvi-discuss at menvi.org
 Date sent: Sat, 04 May 2013 11:18:26 -0400
 Subject: Re: [Menvi-discuss] piano methods

 Hi,

 American Printing House for the Blind sells the complete Alfred 
Basic
 course
 (Levels 1A, 1B, and 2 through 6).  They're expensive, but this 
is still
 one
 of the most widely-used method series in the U.S., both for kids 
and
 adults.

 Royal National Institute for the Blind (RNIB) has the Oxford 
Piano Course
 (Piano Time, books 1 through 3; Piano Time Pieces, books 1 and 
2; Duets
 with
 a Difference for ensemble work; and Tunes for Ten Fingers, More 
Tunes for
 Ten Fingers, and Fun for Ten Fingers--all by Pauline Hall).  The 
"Ten
 Fingers" books are really good for very young beginners because 
they
 introduce musical notation reading using middle C as the 
starting point
 for
 both right and left hands and working outword.  This makes it 
easier for
 players with very small hands to play; it also fosters stronger
 note-recognition earlier in students than the usual C Major 
5-finger
 approach does because it encourages reading by relationships, 
not through
 memorizing isolated note positions on the bass or treble staff.

 Another excellent (and fun) series is Christopher Norton's 
"American
 Popular
 Piano Repertoire" series.  The Library of Congress has the 
Preparatory
 Level
 and Levels 1 through 8 available for download, and Prima Vista 
Braille
 Music
 Services sells all these plus Levels 9 and 10.  I like these 
both as
 supplementary material and as sight-reading practice for my 
sighted
 students.

 For general repertoire collections, one of the best 
comprehensive series
 is
 Denes Agay's "Classics to Moderns".  There are four volumes: 
"Easy
 Classics
 to Moderns, Volume 17", "More Easy Classics to Moderns, Volume 
27",
 "Classics to Moderns for the Early Intermediate Grades, Volume 
37", and
 "Classics to Moderns, Volume 47".  All can be borrowed and some 
can be
 downloaded from the Library of Congress.  These books offer a 
very wide
 variety of pieces spanning from early Baroque (Jerimiah Clarke, 
the Bachs,
 Handel, and many French composers such as Rameau, Dandrieu, 
etc.) through
 early 20th-century ones (Stravinsky, Bartok, Villa-Lobos).

 The Bastien "Piano Literature" series in four volumes is also 
still widely
 used and while it has a much smaller sampling than the Agay 
books, it
 contains the most popular "old standbies" of classical music 
teaching:
 "Fur
 Elise", Elmenreich's "Spinning Song", (both in Volume Three), 
Mozart's
 Sonata K.  545 and various Bach two-part inventions and Chopin 
preludes
 (Volume Four).  Apparently, the publisher of this series has 
produced a
 Volume Five and Volume Six, but neither of these are available 
yet in
 Braille.

 If you're unable to purchase music from RNIB, you can join their 
National
 Library for the Blind and borrow titles.  This makes it possible 
to access
 any of the graded exam pieces from the Associated Board of the 
Royal
 Schools
 of Music--which for some reason can't be bought by anyone 
outside the
 United
 Kingdom.  These books offer a wide variety of styles and periods 
at each
 grade level (1 through 8), and also give blind teachers an 
opportunity to
 have access to some of the more modern arrangements and 
compositions.  For
 example, the 2013-2014 Grade 2 book includes a nice easy jazz 
piece called
 "Strange Things Happen" by Sarah Watts; a great arrangement of 
"Meet the
 Flintstones!"; and pieces by Thomas Attwood, Matthyas Seiber, 
Handel and
 others.  Further up the difficulty ladder, at Grade 5, the 
2013-2014 book
 includes "For Lydia" by Darius Brubeck, MacDowell's "To a Wild 
Rose", and
 others.

 The Suzuki Piano School books (Volumes 1 through 7), available 
through the
 Library of Congress, are good sources for many of the "standard
 repertoire"
 pieces, too.  I have heard from sighted colleagues who use the 
Suzuki
 books
 that they have been revised many times over the years, so I'm 
not sure how
 the Braille would correspond to what's being published now.

 The Alfred "Sonata Album" (Haydn, Mozart and Beethoven), and 
Scarlatti's
 "Sixty Sonatas" are both available for download from the Library 
of
 Congress
 and are fixtures in any good teaching collection.

 The "Piano Adventures" series is really popular, but as yet, I'm 
not sure
 if
 it's available in its entirety, although Prima Vista was working 
on it.
 The
 concepts in it are well-presented, but they're done in highly 
visual ways
 so
 I'm not sure if this would be an easy book to use for a Braille 
reader
 working with sighted beginners.

 Finally, while not used as much these days, some teachers still 
rely on
 the
 following books:
 Bastien "Piano Lessons" books--Primer and Levels 1 through 4.  
If you end
 up
 using these and want to make sure your students have matching 
print
 equivalents, be sure that you ask your print music retailer for 
the "old
 edition"--i.e., not revised or updated.  I haven't used these in 
a long
 time
 because I didn't like the constant use of chord 
symbols--students ended up
 cheating and just reading those instead of learning to read bass 
clef
 notation!
 John Thompson's "Modern Course for the Piano", beginning with 
Teaching
 Little Fingers to Play and continuing from First to Fifth Grade 
books--the
 constant use of finger numbers infuriated me, but these can all 
be
 borrowed
 from Library of Congress.

 Hope that helps you get started ...

 Stephanie Pieck

 ----- Original Message -----
 From: "Stephanie" <sim.musicschool at gmail.com
 To: "This is for discussing music and braille literacy"
 <menvi-discuss at menvi.org
 Sent: Saturday, May 04, 2013 8:40 AM
 Subject: [Menvi-discuss] piano methods


 Hi all,
 I am just begining to start my teaching studio and looking for 
piano
 methods to use.  I'd like to buy one for use at home, and if 
possible have
 a complete one, not the first few books.  Any help would be 
fantastic!
 Thanks,
 Steph

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