new compact light

LESSON 1 First Song

What you'll learn

How to find high and low notes on your piano
Pattern of 2 and 3 black keys
How to play your first song on the piano


Hot Cross Buns
Hot Cross Buns
One a Penny
Two a Penny
Hot Cross Buns

Casio Privia

Mr. Hoffman's Top Pick for Digital Piano: Casio Privia PX-150

View on Amazon


All posts will be moderated for inappropriate content. We are committed to keeping our website a G-rated, safe place for everyone to learn.

337 Responses

  1. Thank you so much for this website. I’m a really nontraditional learner, plus paid lessons are basically out of the question right now, so this is perfect. Just one question: I was only able to get a 61-key digital keyboard. Is that okay for a beginner?

    • Absolutely! With that size keyboard, you should be able to complete all the songs and exercises in our beginning lessons. Good luck and happy playing!

  2. Can you see the lessons on an iPad mini? I can’t see anything for some reason.

    Thank you for offering free lessons.

    We’ve tried guest & we’ve now set up an account.
    After creating account & it says hi & our name in the top rt hand corner, I click on 1st lesson & it says it looks like you haven’t signed in & it gives me 3 options: log in, new user or guest.

    Thanks for your help.

    • I’m so sorry you’re having trouble logging in to our site. This may be because we have recently updated our login process but your browser is “remembering” our site the old way and getting confused. When you try to log in, if you are seeing a pop-up window (rather than being taken to a new page with a login form), then your browser has not downloaded the latest version of our website and must have a hard refresh done or have its cache and cookies cleared. If you prefer not to do this, you may log in using a different browser instead.

      Here are a few more things you can try: One is to use “Private Browsing” (in Safari or Firefox) or “Incognito Mode” (in Chrome), which will simulate the hard refresh I mentioned. Lastly, if you have been using the drop-down lesson menu on our site to go to your chosen lesson, trying using the unit index pages instead; but if you’ve been using the unit index pages, try using the drop-down menu. I know that last suggestion is odd, but the basic idea is to get to the lessons in a different way than you’ve been doing in the past.

      I hope that helps! If not, please send an email to so we can troubleshoot with you directly. It would help to include your browser and operating system, as well as your username (but NOT your password, please). Good luck and happy playing!

  3. I appreciate your free service. My daughter just turned almost a month ago and she has already learned so much in just 3 weeks!

  4. Hey, this is super awesome. Especially the joke at the end about the one lonely black key. I loved that, haha!
    Thank you for this lesson and I am excited to get started.

    • You’re welcome! I’m glad you enjoyed it and Chef is glad you appreciated his random act of kindness at the end. :)

  5. ):
    Iam so sad, i love your lesons, but i missed the sale.
    is there any way i can get the sale now!

    Your #1 student

      • Hi I’ve just signed up and I love playing the piano. I sat by a keyboard when I was 7 and after 15 minuets I tourt myself how to play twinkle twinkle little star. To this day I can play some of fur elise .fre qages .
        The intro to all of me 7 years let it go and ode to joy and some others

  6. Good day to you, Mr. Hoffman! I am born into a middle class family, and we don’t have a piano that has 88 keys or less. We only have a keyboard that has 55 keys. Do you think that is enough? I am doubting that I could learn the piano with a keyboard. Thank you!

    • A smaller keyboard, while not ideal, is certainly fine for a beginner to start with. You can make a great deal of progress, especially in your theory and ear training, without a high quality instrument. However, an acoustic piano or full-sized, weighted-key digital piano will prepare your muscle tone, strength, and agility more effectively than an unweighted keyboard, so it would be a good idea to look around for the opportunity to occasionally practice on one at a local library, church, school, or friend or relative’s home. For more information you can check out our support article, “Choosing a Piano or Keyboard for the Beginning Pianist.” I hope that helps. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. H

  7. I work as a music teacher in India. What do you think. These lessons can help kids learn better?? Can I get in touch with you through email if possible with you planning to make the kids learn better…??

    • Thanks for checking with us! Our support team has sent you an email to see how we can help. – Mr. Hoffman

    • I’m afraid there isn’t. I promise that you’ll learn lots more songs in future lessons, and we’ll start to include left hand parts in Unit 2. I’m glad you’re eager for more to learn! – Mr. Hoffman

  8. Hello All, with the fast way of like that we are living, it’s hard to find time for activities. My daughter is 7 years old, she loves piano but does not know how to read “piano notes” will this website help her understand piano notes.
    do all songs have video tutorials. I was thinking of starting with set 1-20 lessons, does all the songs in this set has video tutorial, if it is only piano sheets and no tutorial video it will not help her at all. Thank you.

    • Yes! In fact, my lessons teach not only how to read and dictate notes, but also to really understand the language of music. The video lessons are the primary base of instruction and all the songs we use are covered in the videos. Please note that Unit 1 (Lessons 1-20) are meant as an introduction to the absolute beginner, so the concepts note letters, rhythm, and staffs are introduced gradually. You won’t find fully-staffed sheet music in our downloadable materials until Unit 2. I hope that helps! – Mr. Hoffman

      • Appreciate your prompt respond. my daughter is still in stage zero. We know nothing about piano or reading music sheets, we enjoy listening to piano music.
        Accomplishments will give her the push she needs to continue learning and this is why i want to start with video tutorials. My Question is: which set do u recommend to start with at this moment? thank you for your time.

        • I hope I’m understanding your question correctly – You’d like to know which Unit of Hoffman Academy video lessons to begin with your daughter? With no piano experience at all, I would recommend starting right from the beginning: Unit 1, Lesson 1. Please let me know if you have any further questions. I’m very happy to be your daughter’s piano teacher! – Mr. Hoffman

    • Sorry for the confusion, Sarah! For the first lesson I just focused on teaching how to play the song with one hand. What I played in the left hand was to help the student begin to recognize the melody even when other accompaniment is going on, but you are not expected to learn that part. As the lessons progress, we will begin to work with both hands and eventually put hands together (starting near the end of Unit 1). We spread out the process because playing hands-together takes a level of coordination we wouldn’t necessarily expect from a brand new beginning student. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  9. Mr. Hoffman

    Thank you for these lessons, I really grateful to you. I gave up my guitar lesson because my father couldn’t buy me a guitar. My older sister has a piano at home so I started playing some pieces from my guitar. If was fun but I didn’t enjoy it much because I missed playing my guitar. Once I came here to at least try piano I was so glad that is was fun and easy, thank you so much. Even though my school laptop that I have doesn’t let me see you videos so let me thank you once more. Thank you

  10. Thanks Mr. Hoffman for your videos I am new to piano but learned already so much! After surfing around the internet I found that you explained the best and take your time through each step
    :) :) :) :) :) :)

  11. Thank you Mr. Hoffman. I used to do piano but then it got expensive and boring so I just quit. Even still, your lessons look really promising. I’ve only just done the first and it’s left me craving for more. With your lessons and enough practice I’m bound to make the worship team at my church! Thanks again, Mr. Hoffman!

  12. Mr. Hoffman. I am a 70 year old new piano student. I have taught myself a few chords on a guitar at age 60 and know enough to strum and sing so gospel songs at church. I have also written a few gospel songs. My purpose in learning the piano is to accompany myself in singing. I do not read music everything is done by ear. I have a new Yamaha yoga-235 keyboard for Christmas. Will your lessons help me to learn to accompany myself? I can set down and pick out the melody of songs I know. My keyboard will transpose in my singing key. My guess is I am expecting to much too soon. Thank for your comments.

    • Thanks for commenting – I love hearing from our adult students! The short answer is, Yes, my lessons can help you learn to accompany yourself, but since you don’t say how quickly you expect it to help, I’m not sure if you expect too much too soon. :) The full answer is this: My lessons are intended to give anyone–including a complete beginner–a thorough musical education focused on piano. We will certainly work on ear training so you can improve your ability to play by ear, but we also work on sight reading, dictation, posture, improvisation, and much more. These other topics may seem to hinder your ear training, but they will in fact contribute to your general musicianship. If that works for you, great! If, however, you’re looking for something that focuses exclusively on ear training, my lessons will probably feel too slow for you. I hope that helps! Good luck and happy playing. – Mr. Hoffman

  13. Hi Mr. Hoffman, I’m from Panama, and I feel so happy that people like you can learn music for free. But I have a question, I know how to play guitar and I learn a little bit of music, why do you call Mi Re Do if the keys are A# G# F# ? Thanks!!!

    • That’s a great question! The answer lies in the fact that there are two different ways to use Solfege: “Fixed Do” and “Moveable Do”. In some countries, a Fixed Do system is used, where Do always means C. However, I find it most helpful as a teacher to teach using both a fixed system (ABCDEFG) and a movable system (Do, Re, Mi, etc). Some kind of fixed system is essential to provide structure and certainty. D is always a D on the piano or on any instrument. However, a movable system is best for helping students easily hear and recognize the function of each note in a scale and relationships between each note in a melody, no matter what key the music is in. So, I try to give my students the best of both worlds by actively using letter names as a fixed system and solfège as a movable system. You can learn more about Solfege here: I hope that helps! Good luck and happy playing. – Mr. Hoffman

    • The free material for Lesson 1 is available to those who sign up for our free piano parent newsletter as a welcome gift. After signing up, you should receive an email with a link to download the welcome gift. Clicking the link in your confirmation email will return you to our website, where you may order and download your free materials. You will need to click “Download” and proceed as if it were a regular transaction, but you will not be charged for it. If you have any trouble with this process, feel free to contact us at Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  14. I just purchased a Yamaha PRS 275 electronic keyboard with 61 keys. Can I take your piano course using this keyboard or will I be limited?


    • 61 is the minimum number of keys necessary to successfully complete all the songs and exercises I’ve presented in our current units, so you’re good! – Mr. Hoffman

  15. Mr.Hoffman I have an electric keyboard/piano but the lower/deep keys don’t work. Would you have any idea why? Thank for taking time to make these videos. I have done these before but then got out of habit and stopped doing them now Im trying to do them daily again.
    from Lianna

    • I’m afraid I’m not sure. My first suggestion would be to check the owner’s manual: For instance, I’ve seen on some keyboards an “accompaniment” setting that assigns the low notes to the task of controlling the chords for the auto-accompaniments, but they may not play if this setting is on. My next question is whether there may have been a water spill? That can fry the keys–I know first hand! :( I hope you figure it out! Good luck and happy playing. – Mr. Hoffman

  16. Hey mr. hoffman i love your lessons. am in lesson 1 bt i dont know how to play with my left hand. is there any help in that? thank you.

    • A little more challenge in the left hand is perfectly normal, and we’ll certainly work on it throughout the lessons. If you want some extra focus right away, I would recommend that you take extra time whenever I say “your turn” or give practice instructions to try playing the same thing in both hands, separately at first and then – if you’re feeling confident – in unison (playing the same thing together at the same time). I hope that helps! – Mr. Hoffman

        • That’s a great question! The simplest answer is, when the student (and parent or teacher if the student is a child) feel that it’s time to move on. It’s important to find a balance between repetition and challenge: both are important for improvement, but too much repetition can become boring while too much challenge can become frustrating…and boredom and frustration are both bad for motivation! If you want more direction, check out the Support section of our website where we have an article about When to Move On to the Next Lesson. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

    • I haven’t personally tried out the PX-160 yet, but I’ve played on many Privia models over the years, and I have no reason to doubt its quality. Privia is a solid, trusted brand, so you’re probably in very good shape with the PX-160. I hope that helps! – Mr. Hoffman

      • Hi mr Hoffman I want to learn piano and i have one at home its a keyboard but it only has 61 keys its a yamaha ypt 200 and it doesnt have key sensitivity but i dont have enough money or space to buy a good piano, will it be good enough for me to use to learn piano on your website? I also dont have the sustain pedal. Hope to hear a yes! Bye!

        • 61 is the minimum number of keys necessary to successfully work through all the songs and exercises we use in my lessons so if your budget is tight, that’s just fine for a beginning keyboard. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  17. Mr. Hoffman,
    THANK YOU so much for creating this site! My two oldest children are so excited to be able to start lessons now. We are not able to afford traditional piano lessons. But, because of you my children will have the same opportunity to learn without the financial burden. You have no idea how much I appreciate this! THANK YOU! THANK YOU!

    • You are very welcome! I am so pleased my lessons are a benefit to your family. Good luck to you in your piano endeavors! – Mr. Hoffman

  18. Hey Mr. Hoffman,
    I was wondering if you’d ever make it possible to play the website on a mobile device such as a iPad, for some reason mine won’t load the videos or even show them, as I’d find it much easier rather than having my laptop nearby.. Thanks so much for creating this amazing site for inspiring pianists though! :)

    • Hmmm… The videos are supposed to work on an iPad in the browser (though we know that iOS Mobile Safari has download and file management limitations, so you can’t download purchased Complete Materials that way). Would you please send an email to our technical support team,, and let them know about your problem? Please include your device and operating system information, as well as what browser you are using.

      Another thing you can try in the meantime is to view our videos via YouTube on your iPad: Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  19. Hi Mr. Hoffman,

    I have always wanted to take piano lessons. My question is I don’t know how to read music. Is this something that is included in your lessons? Do you have to know how to read music to play the piano?

    • I’m so glad you found our program! You do not need to know how to read music to begin – I’ll teach you how to do it over the course of the lessons. We include it because any serious pianist – even those who have strong aural skills (the ability to play by ear) – will be limited in the long run if they never learn to read, write, and dictate music. I look forward to hearing about your progress! – Mr. Hoffman

  20. Your vedios are wonderful I liked it I am from India I liked to play piano but could not find any help but from your vedios it is now easy to play thank you


  21. Mr. Hoffman,

    First of all thank you so much for putting all this content. I must tell you are the best teacher one can have. I am from India, I started looking for the resources online for my daughter who is 4 years old. I am so glad that I found this one. Looking at the content and efforts put in and people loving it, I feel like meeting you in person someday and thanking you.

    Thanks again. God bless you!


    • You are very welcome! It’s a delight to hear from students all over the world and I’m happy to be part of your daughter’s music education. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  22. Hi Hoffman,
    You lessons are good, my son Hugo has already learned suzuki piano with a private tutor, he watched lesson 1 and lesson 47 cuckoo, felt really enjoyed.
    The drawbacks of suzuki method does not teach him how to read notes. so I think to watch your video for learning music theory and sight reading.
    Can we buy the PDF files only for the each unit ?

    • I’m so glad Hugo has enjoyed our lessons! The .pdf files are available for purchase in our Store either one unit at a time (sets of 20 lessons), or as a discounted bundle of all six of our current units (120 lessons). If you have additional sales questions, feel free to email our customer support:

      Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  23. I am a Namibian national and was struggling to find someone. When that someone was available I was shy to tell him to teach me. Now I can do it in the privacy of my house. The first lesson seem so easy to understand and look forward to learning from you. . You seem to be a great teacher. I am a teacher too and know when I see a good one. Thanx!

  24. When a child first begins piano lessons there’s often an initial period of excitement where everything is fun and new. Your child wants to practice because they’re eager to be able to play the piano. But then there comes a time when the novelty wears off and the very long and slow road of music learning stretches out before them.

  25. Mr.hoffman its been a dream of mine to play piano i just don’t know where to start and where to learn everything from and who to learn it from i hope you can help me.

    • Mr. hoffman is a great teacher its a great lesson set you learn how to read music and play multiple songs im ten and on lesson eleven and know the piano abc’s, read music, and play hot cross buns frog in the middle engine #9 its awesome hes my first piano teacher

    • Right now there are over 120 official lessons plus a few bonus lessons. Don’t worry – we’ll keep making more! :) – Mr. Hoffman

  26. Mr. Hoffman
    I am so excited to have found your site. I am 75 years old, probably your oldest new student. I have always wanted to learn to play the piano and I finally invested in a baby gran electric keyboard and love practing on it. I did your first lesson and loved it. I am hoping to learn to really play and to teach little ones in a nearby day care to play if they choose to. I love your approach and know I will learn so much. Thank you for offering these classes. I was going to just teach myself until I found you. You are one of my new blessings. Thanks so much.

  27. Hello Mr.Hoffman, would you please send me the music sheet of playing Hot Cross Burn both in left and hand right. My kid love to practice how to play chord of Hot Cross Burn on both hand like you. Thank you!

    • I’m afraid I simply improvised the left hand accompaniment that day, so I don’t have sheet music for it. I apologize! – Mr. Hoffman

  28. I love the 1st song on lesson one, but dont know how to play the accompaniment on the left hand. Can you give me the details? Thank you so much!

    • For this first lesson I just focused on teaching the song with one hand. What I played in the left hand was to help the student begin to recognize the melody even when other accompaniment is going on, but they are not expected to learn that part. As the lessons progress, we will begin to work with both hands and eventually put hands together (starting near the end of Unit 1). We spread out the process because playing hands-together takes a level of coordination we wouldn’t necessarily expect from a beginning student. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  29. Hi, Mr. Hoffman
    Im interested for piano classes for my 7years old daugther. We are spanish native speakers, and we usually learn solfegio in our country (no ABCDEFG notation)… also I dont know wich notation is better to learn. My daughter doesnt speak spanish, so please is your method situable for her?.
    Also want to thank you about your recomendations for pianos for beginners, and based on that I have decided to buy a Casio electronic piano, but there are two models: PRIVIA (PX-760, PX-860) and CELVIANO (AP-260, AP460) and the price range is near, so please in orden of preference, whats your advise?
    Thanks in advance

    • That’s a great question. There are two different ways to use Solfege: Fixed Do and Movable Do. In some countries, a fixed Do system is used, where Do always means C – that sounds like what you have learned. However, I find it most helpful as a teacher to use the letters (ABCDEFG) as a fixed system and to use Solfege (Do, Re, Mi, etc) as a movable system that can be transposed into any key we need. To learn more about these two systems of Solfege, check out our article, “What is Solfege?

      When it comes to digital pianos, I generally prefer the Privias, but if you’d like a more in depth review of the models you’ve listed, let me refer you to a great website I recommend: I hope that helps! – Mr. Hoffman

    • If your keyboard has fewer than 61 keys, some of the finger power exercises and other activities will be limited. However, most songs will work just fine so if that is what you have, it’s perfectly fine to get started on that. Good luck! – Mr. Hoffman

  30. Mr.Hoffman,
    I am a mother of three children who really want to learn how to play the piano. I myself have no musical background . We live overseas. Can I just buy the books from your store and have the kids watch the videos and practice daily and is that Enough? or do i have to additionally get a piano teacher to teach my kids along with your lessons? (the problem with the piano teacher here is that my kids don’t speak the local language of this country). Thank you

    • Amina, your situation is one of the scenarios that inspired us to put our lessons online in the first place! With our video lessons and the supplementary materials, your kids can receive a thorough foundation for their musical education. There is no need to get a piano teacher to work along with your kids; you provide the support and encouragement and I provide the teaching. I know that being a piano parent is intimidating when you have no musical background yourself, but your knowledge of your children’s interests, motivations, schedule, and goals are assets that no one else can match. We provide a Parent’s Guide, our blog, and a weekly newsletter to offer you the tools you need to help your children work through our lessons. I hope you give my program a try! – Mr. Hoffman

      • Ok I’m really tired and slightly emotional but your response brought a tear to my eye all the same. It’s so daunting wanting to teach a child something you know very little about and not have enough for lessons. Thank you.

    • I’m so sorry you’re having trouble viewing our lessons. Our videos are served via YouTube, so if you are in a locality or a facility that blocks YouTube videos, they will not be accessible on our site either. If you are not aware of any firewalls that could be blocking the videos, please try viewing them on our YouTube Channel:

      If the videos work on YouTube but not on our site, please send an email to our customer support team at, including the type of browser and operating system you are using, as well as your username. We look forward to helping you get this working! – Mr. Hoffman

    • That is just fine for now! Getting started with what you have is more important than waiting until you can afford something better. If you are serious about pursuing your piano studies, it would be a good idea for your family to start saving up or for you to find a higher quality piano/keyboard you could practice on in the near future – check with local libraries, churches, friends and relatives. Good luck! – Mr. Hoffman

  31. thank you so much, I love that you lesson are fun, and I can understand what you are saying. I love you Lessons!

  32. Hi Mr. Hoffman,
    I’m a professional musician who just started teaching piano again after a long hiatus. One of the reasons I stopped was because I couldn’t find teaching materials that covered all the bases, but were TRULY enjoyable for children. I just watched your first lesson, and I was blown away–I love it!! Thank you SO MUCH for making this available. Question: one of my younger students is left-handed; this is the first time I’ve worked with a leftie, and I’m wondering if you have any thoughts on how best to proceed. It feels a little unfair to expect him to learn everything with his non-dominant hand, since most pieces favor the right hand, at least melodically. Obviously, the goal is ultimately to develop true ambidexterity, but in the meantime…any suggestions?

    • Thank you for your question! I have taught many left handed children, and I always use the same approach regardless of which hand is dominant. Pianists need to develop coordination in both hands, and using my method, your student should be fine. You will notice that I often teach a song first in the right hand, but then I encourage students to try playing melody in the left hand, too, then both hands. Swapping the melody line to left hand while the right hand plays chords is another great exercise, once they are regularly playing hands together. Ideally, during practice time, you should be spending roughly equal time between right handed and left handed playing, so both hands develop equally. I hope this helps! – Mr. Hoffman

  33. Thank you for your help Joseph Hoffman! You have made me an excellent pianist and I am the best pianist or musician in my family

  34. That was amazing, now I know how to play this song. I could not believe it. Thank you. I will definitely use this for my soon to be 5 year old son. He is showing a lot of interest in playing and I think he will love your Lessons.

  35. What is the difference between weighted and non-weighted keys?
    As a beginner, I’m using a 61-key lighted keyboard, but as I progress, I will definitely be getting the 88-key weighted keyboard if needed.

    • Weighted keys mimic the extra effort and pressure needed to press the keys on an acoustic piano, which properly develops muscle power in your fingers and wrists. Unweighted keyboards are more lightweight and usually cheaper, but if you learn on one you will find it much more difficult to play an acoustic piano in the long run. You can learn more about the differences here: Choosing a Piano or Keyboard for the Beginning Student. – Mr. Hoffman

    • It takes many hours to produce each lesson. We use similar methods and curriculum to our live lessons, but they have to be altered and scripted to work as a video. Then we do the filming with several different takes and camera angle changes. After that comes the editing, where we correct any little mistakes and often add special visual elements. Then there are also the activity pages and sheet music to create and the sound files that supplement each lesson. I’m so glad I have a great team of people helping me make it all possible! Thanks for the question. – Mr. Hoffman

  36. I don’t have an 88-key piano at home but I do have a ~60 or so key keyboard. Will that be sufficient to begin lessons?

    • Yes, 61 keys is the minimum number you can have on your keyboard and still be able to successfully complete all the songs and exercises we use in our lessons. If you have 61+ weighted keys, that’s a great place to begin. If your keys are unweighted, you may want to start saving for an upgrade in the future. Good luck! – Mr. Hoffman

  37. Our home has no piano experience. Looking to teach an 8 year old that wishes to play the piano. I watched your 1st. video & song. You are a great teacher, but I am a bit confused. You show what you are doing very thorough with your right hand, and include the keys highlighted in blue up above to show what you are doing. However, with your left hand no keys are highlighted above in blue and I can not tell which keys you are playing, or in what order.

    So, my question is are you only teaching my child to play this bun song with her right hand for the first lesson? So, when she can play it with her right hand only, she has mastered the first lesson? I know this might sound silly, but I want to be able to tell her what to do with her left hand when she asks. I went onto the next video, but you move onto learning the alphabet. Thank you so much for your time.

    • Those are great questions. Yes, for this first lesson I just focused on teaching the song with one hand. What I played in the left hand was to help the student begin to recognize the melody even when other accompaniment is going on, but they are not expected to learn that part. As the lessons progress, we will begin to work with both hands and eventually put hands together (starting near the end of Unit 1). We spread out the process because playing hands-together takes a level of coordination we wouldn’t necessarily expect from a beginning student. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  38. Mr. Hoffman, I am most appreciative of your first lesson. I so wish to learn the piano. You’ve given me the best chance. Thank you.

  39. Thank you SO much Mr. Hoffman! You are going to probably going to go through all of my gaps I have in learning to play the piano. Which would mean SO much to me because almost all of my friends know how. So thank you again and just by your first lesson, I think I will learn how to play:) And I am trying to get my parents to buy me the entire piano unit pack so I can study. (I would study all the time even if I did not have the workbook. Even though I really want it) So thank you and keep up the good work!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  40. Hi Mr Hoffman! We are a homeschooling family and my kids are thrilled that we stumbled upon your wonderful website. Thank you so much for taking the time to share your gift! We are excited to begin our lessons with you. I have purchased the worksheets to go along with your lessons and just have one quick question. How long would you recommend staying on each lesson before moving onto the next? Is it simply based on how quickly the kids are picking it up…. just wondering based on your practice recommendations of 20 mins each day- will that be outlined in later lessons? Thanks again SO very much! :)

    • For beginners, I generally recommend completing 2-3 lessons per week, but it is important to keep an eye on how your kids are picking it up. Practicing every day is important, and new students usually do well with 15-20 minutes per day, but I prefer to base practice sessions on completing tasks rather than strictly on a timer. Check out our blog post on establishing a Piano Practice Checklist if you think that might work in your family. Good luck! – Mr. Hoffman

        • Hi, Sara, as soon as i read that you are a homeschooling family trying to teach the kids piano my heart jumped. we are too a homeschooling family living overseas and i have NO musical background or anything and my girls ages 8 and 6 really want to learn the piano. Do you have any musical background? do you think it is futile to even try to teach the girls how to play the piano through Mr.Hoffman’s lessons even if i don’t know anything about music? Amina

    • In my lessons, I try to include things that will help you learn new songs and also help you become a good musician in general. Some things, like the story of Piano Street coming up in a few lessons, are not essential themselves but will help you remember important concepts in the future. – Mr. Hoffman

  41. I don’t want to buy a grand piano so is it okay to play on an electrical one. For example the Casio CTK2400. It has 61 keys. Please get back to me as soon as possible because I am extremely eager to start learning!

    • I don’t have personal experience with that type of keyboard, but here is what you need to know: 61 keys is fine for a beginning pianist – while not a full-sized keyboard, it will give you enough room to complete all of the songs and exercises we use in our lessons. Before purchasing it, however, you should find out whether the keys are weighted. Weighted keys build and train your finger muscles so you will be able to play any type of piano, including acoustic, in the future. For more details and some brand & budget recommendations, check out our blog post on Choosing a Piano or Keyboard for the Beginning Student. Good luck! – Mr. Hoffman

  42. Hello Joseph,

    I am interested in learning how to play the piano. There’s only one issue: I am Deaf. I know Beethoven became deaf, but despite that he still went on to be one of the greatest pianists ever. He became deaf after he already learned how to play, but I have been deaf all my life and have been wanting to learn how to play the piano. What is the best approach to take on learning the piano as a d/Deaf person?

    • Wow – that is an amazing ambition. I suppose first off I would want to know a little more before making a recommendation. Specifically, how do you experience music? Can you hear it at all? (In other words is this partial deafness or complete?) Or have you only experienced it through feeling vibrations? In order to learn to play there would have to be some way you could register what you are creating and experience the results of your playing. I’m happy to discuss this further if you’re still interested. – Mr. Hoffman

  43. Hi,
    I just looked through your website and really the way you are teaching. I am planning on introducing my 5 year old to the world of piano. I have a Roland Kr7. Is it ok to teach a small child on that ?

    • That’s a great digital piano to start with! It has 88 weighted keys, which will give your child a similar sense of the finger strength required to play an acoustic piano. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  44. I began piano lessons 8/03 with a music instructor and stopped for awhile. I transferred to another instructor 5/12 and had been taking lessons until 6/14 when my instructor became ill. I have since been practicing on my own since 6/14. I have completed 1 and am now in Alfred’s Basic Adult Piano Course Level 2. I am playing Alexander’s Ragtime Band. I review my previous lessons often, and perhaps I linger too long seeking perfection before advancing. I have CDs with both books and use them on occasion just improve my cadence. I would like to practice with an instructor because I’m not certain of explanations regarding book instructions, chords, fingering and just overall guidance concerning improvement. Do you have any suggestions, I would greatly appreciate your advice. Thank you.

    • Geraldine – It is wonderful that you are doing so much practice and review on your own. If you are in Alfred’s Level 2, you are probably more advanced than the beginning lessons we currently offer on our site. We do plan to produce more advanced lessons in time, but for now let me suggest that you continue the wonderful work you’re doing on your own and start looking around for a live teacher who can help you further. We’ve posted an article about Finding a Piano Teacher that can give you some tips. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

  45. Mr. Hoffman,
    My daughter is taking your lessons and loves it. She is working on a 61 key very old Casio. We were looking into the Casio PX-150, but at a local music shop, we were told they thought the Yamaha was of better quality and told us about the Yamaha P35. I don’t know much about digital pianos and from what I’ve read the reviews are pretty good on both models. Do you have any insight into the Yamaha that could steer us one way or the other? Thanks so much!

  46. Thank you for offering these lessons FREE! You have a great personality for the videos, in addition to the talent. We will add this to our HS routine now! So thankful!

    • I am 60+ and started working at an Adult Day Care Center. I walk past the big piano there every morning after I open the doors with hopes someone who “plays” will walk in to entertain our music loving participants. I recall my Daddy trying to teach me on the player piano in our basement growing up. I am so happy I found this site and my new teacher Mr. Hoffman. I will go to work a little early for my lessons. Thanks so much.

  47. Why, oh why, wonderful Mr. Hoffman… is a Casio your favorite beginner’s keyboard? Sure it’s cheap, but you could get a Yamaha digital Clavinova or other, slightly used or perhaps new, depending on the model, for about the same money. Yamaha is far, far superior. Support our local Classic Pianos! They have many digital Yamahas! They are not only superior instruments on all points, but hold their value. The only Casio I would ever buy would be in a watch. Maybe not even that.

    Love everything else you’re doing!

    • Hi Sherry, Thanks for your comment! I think the Clavinova is also a great digital piano–no question about that. And believe me when I say that we support Classic Pianos–a first rate piano store. 2 years ago we bought six brand new Yamaha U-1s from Classic Pianos for our new Hoffman Academy location. About the Casio Privia–have you actually played on one? I find the Privia line to have an EXCELLENT action and tone, equal to, in my opinion, other more expensive models. I am all about value. I don’t see why I should pay $1-2K or more for a Clavinova when I can get great quality in a Privia for $600.

    • I agree with Mr Hoffman. My husband and I looked for about a year before buying the Casio Privia keyboard (before we started our kids on this site and saw his recommendation). It’s a fantastic keyboard. And a great value. Thanks for your lessons Mr Hoffman! My kids and I enjoy them!

  48. Thank you for offering these lessons! We homeschool our daughters. I started teaching our 6 year old piano but she’s seeing enough of me! She is responding better to you and I’m sure I’ll learn with her along the way.

  49. I play piano, but not as well as I’d like. I have a seven-year-old granddaughter who wants me to teach her how to play. I plan to use your lessons as our “curriculum.” As we advance, I just may learn some new things, myself! I know I’ll learn a lot about how to teach what I already know. Thank you very much for giving of yourself for others to have the benefit of your knowledge and hard work. Blessings!

  50. Amazing, So delighted with everything this program offers. Thank you could never suffice to explain how grateful my family is with this opportunity.

  51. Hi there, Mr. Hoffman. I have just come across your website recently. I’m a complete beginner and I don’t have a background in music, but I do want to learn to play the piano so much.

    I had researched about free music lessons in the past and I didn’t see them as effective, and so I thought that maybe I would learn better if I would have live music lessons.
    If only I were financially adept to do so though.

    Then I realized that it was just a matter of better teaching methods.

    I have no enough words now but…
    I really thank God for you. You are a blessing to each of us here. I hope you all the best. And do continue sharing your talent and selfless giving. =)

  52. Hi Mr Hoffman,

    I have just registered on our site after watching some of your lessons on youtube. Thanks a bunch for great lessons.
    I am a beginner and purchased a second hand piano prior to having read your recommendations. I own a Zender, will this do for the time being for a beginner?
    Thank you

  53. Hello Mr. Hoffman,

    is this an online lesson free? I am a grown up man; I want to learn how to play piano. I have been doing research so many times on Google or youtube for a beginner piano lesson. I love singing. I can sing with Karaoke or with a band. I took voice lesson; sometimes, I get so frustrated because it is hard to sing with piano when I don’t even know how to read the music. I sometimes perform solo in my church without piano, but most of the time I sing in a choir group for my church. I am a baritone person and I took a voice lesson from my college….I hope that one day I can sing and play piano at the same time….

  54. All I can say is I love your lessons. I asked my second grader the best part of her school day ( we homeschool) and she said, “PIANO!”

    The kids love the animations at the end. Thanks for these, I will be downloading the materials!

  55. I’m new to this, I’ve played piano, but I didn’t know what exactly I’m doing, I know some basic things like notes, but I’d like to learn from bare basics again, even if it’s an easy song like this, and even though the tutorial appears to be more directed towards children, it’s still nice. I hope I can learn a lot from these lessons. Good luck to me. :)

  56. i was hoping that this video would show me things like the c scale or do re mi…. and so on… but i get what your trying to teach

  57. Hi, I have an electronic keyboard, Yamaha PSR-262 with 61 keys. I don’t have the space or money to be able to get a regular piano (21 year old just out of college, have to start paying student loans off next week!) Will my keyboard work for relearning the piano with your lessons? I used to take piano lessons for a few years when I was younger (up until probably the age of 7) but I haven’t played since then. I would really like to relearn the piano, one of my current goals is to eventually be able to play the song Piano Variation In Blue from the movie Finding Neverland ( ) How long do you think it would take to learn how to be able to play that song, and will my keyboard work? Thank you so much for offering these lessons for free! I will start with the first lesson later this evening when I have the time.

    • Hello Hannah! Thank you for your message. Your keyboard should be just fine to begin learning on. If you want to achieve the level of the song you mentioned, this is going to take some time–perhaps years–but I strongly encourage you to pursue your goal and get started. The best thing you can do is establish the habit of daily practice. Choose a time of day to be your special practice time, and then keep that time sacred. Even 20-30 minutes a day can create some great progress. As you progress, you will probably come to the point of wanting to upgrade to a full length, 88-key piano with weighted keys, or a real acoustic piano, but for now I think your instrument will be just fine. I hope you find my lessons useful in getting started with learning the piano! Happy playing!

  58. First I saw you in youtube and makes me want to learn piano. So here I am one of your student to learn more about playing piano. Being positive !!Thank you for your great method of teaching. Its cool and I think I will enjoy it to have you as my teacher.
    See you!!

  59. Mr. Hoffman,
    My child is 7 yrs old. I started her on electronic keyboard without weighted keys. Can she gradually upgrade herself to a piano? Is it better to start with a piano right now? If so, which piano will you suggest?

    • To me, a “great pianist” is one who makes music with full heart and passion and love. It is also one who has the discipline to stick to daily practice, with focus on refining and polishing skills to an artistic level. How long does this take? I’m not sure. I think it is possible to play even simple “children’s songs” with artistry. I’ve also heard very technically advanced pianists that I would not call “great” because they lacked heart. I would focus less on being a great pianist, and focus instead on being great at practicing, and focus your practicing on refining your ability to artistically express yourself. That will be music’s greatest reward.

  60. Dear Mr. Hoffman thanks for teaching us the lessons from 1 too 56 you were great and your wife and you are a great piano teacher. Keep teaching us and we will play for you and I love your shows , thanks we love you Love Anthoney Thompson xoxo

  61. I am so happy to have had an opportunity to learn from you and use your curriculum for my 9, 7 and 4 year old boys. We plan to learn through lesson 80 since learning music inside and out interests our family! They love your teaching method and we have truly been Blessed. Thank you!

  62. This website is an answer to prayer! My son has really enjoyed your lessons. Thanks so much for FREE lessons! You’re a wonderful teacher!
    -Hans’ Mom

  63. i am writing for this my son who is studying in fifth standard in school ,he is studying keyboard for the last three years.he is very much liked to see your piano is very much interesting for him.he have a keyboard of yamaha psr i455.

  64. Hi Mr Hoffman..I was looking for a site that offered begginers lessons to teach my grandson how to play piano when I found yours…I know basic chords and can play along with other musicians. I am hoping to teach begginers and learn something I can use along the way also….I haven’t taken lessons and I need to learn how to give them, so do you think you will be able to help me learn and teach others? Hot Cross Buns was very easy and am going to teach that to my grandson as well as the other lessons you offer…Thank you,

  65. hi mr.hoffman. i wonder what keyboard should i buy for a beginner like me? what would you recommend?

  66. Thank you so much for these lessons Mr. Hoffman. I am failing on this song at the moment trying to play the song with both hands as you did in the video, and I feel as if I am just not coordinated enough to be good at piano. However, I will keep trying. Thank you again.

    • Hi Zane, thanks for watching! I wasn’t expecting that you could play it hands together like I do. In this lesson, I’m just hoping that you can learn the melody. I add some extra notes in my left hand, just to make it sound more interesting, but I would encourage you to just keep going with the lessons. We’ll get to more complex things to do with both hands as we go and as you build skill.

  67. Thank you so much for this video, it has helped me a lot.
    I have never taken piano lessons, but I have a problem with my left hand, I can’t coordinate my left hand! I play perfectly with my right hand and then with my left hand I can’t, I don’t know what to do!

    • Hi Gabriela, I would say that you are completely normal! If you are right-handed, then your left hand at first will likely not feel very coordinated when you play. But, as a pianist, you will need to master use of both hands. My suggestion is to practice extra using the left hand. This can help your left hand “catch up” to your right hand in terms of coordination and agility. Just be patient, and practice a little every day. Soon you will find that your left hand is able to play just fine. Please keep me posted about how it goes! -Mr. Hoffman

  68. hello where do u get the sheets for hot cross buns im new to this so if would be awesome if u help me also is 10 a good age to learn to play.

  69. If you are playing the piano and some of the bass clef notes hit the same key as some of the treble clef notes, which hand do you use? Thanks for the help!

    • The answer is, it depends. Most often, if the notes are written on the bottom staff, then your left hand plays them, even if the notes go up into the range of the treble clef. If the notes are written in the top staff, the right hand plays them. There are exceptions to this, however. Any exceptions are usually noted in the music with the marking “RH” or “LH” to indicate which hand is playing the notes written. Also, sometimes if both hands are playing in the same staff, notes for the RH are written with the stems going up, and notes for the LH are written with stems going down. I hope this helps!

  70. Hi Mr. Hoffman! I am 14, so do you think I am too old to start playing the piano?? Also thank you for the tips, and teaching, I love your strategy. P.S. I loved your little puppet show at the end :)

    • Hi Caroline, Thanks for your question. I believe you can learn to play the piano at any age, as long as you have patience and persistence. Just practice every day and keep working through the lessons. I hope you enjoy learning to play the piano with me! Best, Mr. Hoffman PS Glad you liked the puppet moment at the end!

  71. Thanks to your usage of solfege, I can finally put my Casio WX-500 to use without having to memorize absolute key positions! I really only have to decide on one absolute key if I know the tune relative to that one key, so I managed to easily play a “ghostly” Hot Cross Buns on the three highest keys after watching. Thanks for making these wonderful videos and setting up an organized website for them!

  72. Hi, I love your lessons, I feel really great learning piano lessons…..Can you also teach how to play the chords just like how you did it in the above video? :)

  73. I like the new layout to the website. Each of my kids enjoy your lessons a lot! We’ve been using them for a couple years now with each of my kids as they get older.

  74. how do u go to the newsletter and make an acount plz awnser and ur a really good teacher i love playing a piano

  75. My 8-year-old, after singing and playing “Hot Cross Buns” practically non-stop for a couple days, noticed that the beginning note pattern is just like “Figaro.” I love how this method gets the music inside the learner so they can make musical connections like that.

  76. i love this website. ive always had a piano and its adapter but my dad never taught so it’s been pretty useless to me until no :) :D

  77. Very nice method for young kids.
    But only one question: why do you sing do-re-mi while playing la#,so# and fa# ? They would get confused.

    • There are 2 approaches to solfege used around the world: fixed ‘do’ and moveable ‘do’. In the US, and in some other Eastern European countries, moveable ‘do’ is more common. In moveable ‘do’, ‘do’ is the tonic pitch. In other words, if you are in the key of F-sharp, then F-sharp is ‘do’, G-sharp is ‘re’, etc. In fixed ‘do’, C is ‘do’, D is ‘re’, etc. The reason I choose to use moveable ‘do’ instead of fixed ‘do’ is because fixed ‘do’ (in the US at least) is a redundant, and therefore somewhat pointless system, since we already use letter names (C, D, E, etc.) to represent the fixed pitches. Moveable ‘do’, on the other hand, is very useful in teaching transposition to beginning students, so kids can easily see how the same relationship of pitches can be transposed to various keys. So, to sum up, I use letter names to represent the fixed pitches on the piano (C, D, E, etc), but moveable ‘do’ to represent the relationships of the pitches to one another around a tonal center. My students learn both a fixed and a moveable system, which I believe gives them the greatest advantage as they progress and develop musically.

  78. For the first time in my life I learn to playmy first song Amen to that, as a kid my dream was always to learn how to play the piano, being a poor kid my mom did not had the means to send me to piano lessons, I do not have the words to thank you for all of us who you inspire by you teaching us to play the piano , you makes it so easy for us especialy me who is a hard learner i,m almost 49 years of age. May our heavenly Savior keep blessing you and your family for helping other and using your talent He gave you to teach other ,such as me . Thank you and God bless.

  79. Joseph, thank you for the interesting teaching method. I will be back because your lessons make it funner : )
    more happy notes to you , Rod

  80. Just watched your first lesson and I am very impressed. I’ll let you know what the 5 year old thinks after. Have bought some ‘hot cross buns’ for the occasion (chocolate chip cookies with icing with a cross on the top of them). What I like about your first lesson is the simplicity, talking to the child, a song accomplished in the first lesson, the opening with your demonstrating your skill which will blow her out of the water (she is going to want to see you in person), pointing out the single black key alone at the bottom just tickles me and I love that you give him some love at the end!!!!! Good job. Kudos.

    • Thanks for the feedback, and what a fun idea to make your own ‘hot cross buns’ to enjoy! I hope your 5 year old has a delightful experience learning to play the piano! Please keep me posted about progress. Best, Joseph Hoffman

      • I know how to play this. It is just that my last comment is on lesson fifty nine, which is love somebody. I have finished all the lessons

  81. hi mr hoffman
    ı live in turkey but ı know englısh very good
    ı had lesson with two pıano teachers, but now ı understand this very good
    this is a very good lesson ı enjoyed it

  82. Hi Mr Hoffman,
    Writing you from Bangladesh. I am 32 years old and taking lessons from your website. I don’t have a Piano but I have already completed lesson no 10. Planning to buy one in next month. There are very few models of digital pianos available in our country. I did not find a Casio Privia PX 150. But I found a Casio PX 750, which matches my budget. Is it ok?

    Thanks for your magnificent job.

  83. Thank you so much mr.Hoffman. I always wanted to play the piano. I used to but I started taking math lessons so I couldn’t any more. But now I can continue because of you. Really cool site. Thanks for making it free.

  84. Mr.Hoffman I only got a orchestral piano with the 2 rows of keys so how do I play your songs with it ??????????????????? :D :D :D

  85. what are the songs called that you played before you played the main song ????? I really want to learn them .. I know Symphony 5 or 9

  86. Dear Sir,
    I actually bought a normal,not proffesional piano.Is it ok to use that during the days when I am practising?My piano has only 17 keys,is that ok to learn with?

  87. What a wonderful teaching method!! My children and I loved sitting down at the piano and playing together. Really great voice you have and excellent video production!

  88. Mr. Hoffman,

    Your method of teaching piano gives a concrete learning. The style is superb! Simple and straight forward for learners. My friend who is now 60 is learning aggresively and enjoying your piano online free lessons. Thank you for your contribution to the world.

    • I cover various major and minor pentascales in my online lessons. You can check out the following lessons: 12, 18, 29, 35, 38, and 58 to learn about the C, D, G, and E major pentascales, and the D minor pentascale. Thanks for watching!

  89. Hi! I am not very musically inclined, but my daughter is, and I love the gift of your lessons! We have a 61 key keyboard at our home and my mother has a piano. Do you think it is possible to learn on the keyboard but practice on the piano when we visit?

    • Hello! I recommend that my students practice on an acoustic piano, or a digital piano with 88 weighted keys whenever possible. But if that is not possible, using your 61-key keyboard plus occasional practice on grandma’s acoustic piano should work fine, too. The main advantage of using weighted keys is developing finger strength as you practice. So, I’d recommend starting to save up for a piano or digital piano with weighted keys so your daughter can have that benefit every time she practices. I hope she enjoys the lessons! Best, Joseph Hoffman

  90. Could you please share the notes you are playing with your left hand? Thanks so much!! Wonderful site, lessons and materials!

  91. Just found your site , very impressive.
    56 year old guy, love and fascinated with the sound of the piano. Purchased one and am going to give it a try.
    Thank You,
    Dwight S.

  92. Dear Mr. Hoffman;

    It`s Christmas Eve and Just I want to say :



    May all the sweet magic of Christmas conspire to gladden your heart and fill every desire.

  93. My friend has been learning lessons from Mr Hoffman on YouTube, unfortunately he doesn’t have a piano and he asked me if it is possible to play on the organ…?

  94. I love this, this is the best website I have ever visited. Thanks Mr. Hoffman. Thanks. I love what you do and how you do it. I just made an account today and so far I love it. I love the fact that its free and that I can become a piano player like the piano player I love. Thanks for doing what you do and if I’d never come across to this website, I would probably be somewhere wishing I had the power to be a great piano player. Thanks Mr. Hoffman. Thanks!

  95. Thank you, Mr. Hoffman:
    My daughter is 3 years old and has been wanting to learn the piano since she could reach the keyboard. She has started your lessons today because locally she must be 4 years old to begin lessons. Thank you again, Lori.

  96. Mr. Hoffman-

    We love your lessons and we love learning with you as our guide. I thought the lessons and material from your first endeavors were awesome but now you’ve raised the bar. Thank you! We were on later lessons but my little one wanted to start all the lessons over. Wonderful! I love seeing her catch your enthusiasm for music. (She giggled and giggled at the silly clip of the finger puppet bringing lonely black key some hot cross buns!)

  97. Hi ,
    I surprised yesterday that my son of 4 and half year remember and sing the do re me of this song in spite that he heard the new video lesson since 3 weeks ago .
    While today we will start seriously the lessons and practice.

  98. My daughter could not stop at one lesson and wanted to go on to do 3 more! I had to stop and remind her she needs to practice what she has learnt! :) She and I both are enjoying the lessons.. Thanks so much!

  99. I wish my piano lessons were so fun! I am excited to teach my kids piano along with Mr. Hoffman!! Thank you for creating this academy!

  100. I am a member of the old site but couldn’t get into this one. Had to register again. My grandson loves taking lessons from Mr. Hoffman!

  101. Your site is totally awesome. I’m actually a guitar teacher, but a friends 9-year old son wants to learn piano, so I’m by default his coach. Thank you.

  102. material printed… check, read first lesson… check, watch first lesson… check, master hot cross buns with right hand only… check :) feeling accomplished already thank you.

Leave a reply

Hoffman Academy
logo dark