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Piano Lessons

Unit 1 Lessons 1–20

Repertoire

  • Hot Cross Buns
  • D Journey
  • C Boogie
  • Five Woodpeckers
  • Frog in the Middle
  • Chocolate
  • Listen for Bells

Skills

  • Piano posture
  • C & D major pentascales
  • Transposing
  • Rhythmic dictation
  • Composing rhythms
  • Improvisation basics
  • Adding chords while playing the melody

Knowledge

  • Solfège: do, re, mi, fa, so
  • Musical alphabet
  • Names of all white keys on piano
  • Rhythms: quarter note, quarter rest, eighth notes, half notes
  • Finger numbers
  • Terms: stepping, skipping, repeating, high, low, improvisation, composition, sharp, rhythmic dictation, solfège, transpose

Unit 2 Lessons 21–40

Repertoire

  • Mouse in the House
  • Rain Come Wet Me
  • Who’s That?
  • Let Us Chase the Squirrel
  • Dinah
  • The Wild Horses

Skills

  • Playing 3-note chords
  • "Stepping & Skipping" Finger Exercise
  • I & V7 chords
  • Minor pentascales
  • New pentascales: C, D, G minor and G major
  • Melodic dictation: stepping, skipping, repeating on staff
  • Ear training: basic patterns in major pentascale

Knowledge

  • Grand staff basics: treble clef, bass clef
  • Guide notes: treble G, middle C, bass F
  • New rhythms: dotted half note, sixteenth notes
  • Solfège: ti (for V7 chord)
  • Repeat sign
  • Terms: harmonize, blues scale, melodic dictation, treble clef, bass clef, grand staff

Unit 3 Lessons 41–60

Repertoire

  • Silver Birch Tree
  • Cuckoo
  • Grinding Corn
  • Love Somebody

Skills

  • V7 and IV chords
  • New pentascales: E & F major
  • Reading repertoire from the grand staff
  • Stepping & Skipping finger power exercise
  • Counting the beat

Knowledge

  • Time signature, measures & barlines
  • New rhythms: Dotted eighth-sixteenth notes
  • Flats
  • FGABC on the bass staff
  • Terms: similar and contrary motion

Unit 4 Lessons 61–80

Repertoire

  • Mary Had a Little Lamb
  • Spinning Song
  • Oranges & Lemons
  • I Have a Dog
  • Debka Hora
  • March

Skills

  • Harmonizing a melody
  • Recognizing I & V7 chords by ear
  • New pentascales: C, F & E minor
  • New articulation: staccato
  • Fsus4 and Csus4 chords
  • Improvising using "trading 2s"

Knowledge

  • Treble C staff notes: CDEFG
  • Bass C staff notes: CDEFG
  • Terms: parallel minor, staccato, legato
  • New rhythm: eighth note with 2 sixteenths
  • Dynamics: forte, piano

Unit 5 Lessons 81–100

Repertoire

  • Ode to Joy
  • Honeybee
  • I Hear the Mill Wheel
  • Yankee Doodle
  • Bagpipe
  • La Cinquantaine

Skills

  • New pentascales: A major and minor
  • Improvising with question and answer phrases
  • Sight reading short 3-note patterns
  • Composing original music using a haiku
  • Improvising using the A blues scale
  • Playing a duet

Knowledge

  • New rhythm: dotted quarter note with flagged eighth
  • Composer Ludwig van Beethoven
  • 7 guide notes on the grand staff
  • Half steps and whole steps
  • Solfège below do: low ti, la, so
  • Terms: duet, primo, secondo, crescendo, fermata, melody, accompaniment

Unit 6 Lessons 101–120

Repertoire

  • Row, Row, Row Your Boat
  • Lady, Lady
  • Harvest Dance
  • Au Clair de la Lune
  • Kye Kye Kule

Skills

  • New pentascales: D-flat, E-flat, F-sharp, A-flat, B-flat and B major and minor
  • Review all 24 pentascales using circle of 5ths
  • Hear and play melodies by ear
  • Counting rhythms using a subdivided beat
  • Sight reading using sharps and flats

Knowledge

  • Circle of 5ths
  • New rhythm: eighth rest
  • Terms: syncopation, subdivided beat, enharmonics

Unit 7 Lessons 121–140

Repertoire

  • Vivace
  • All the Pretty Horses
  • Dance
  • Are You Sleeping
  • Black Snake

Skills

  • Reading chord symbols from a lead sheet
  • Using a metronome to help build speed in playing a fast song
  • New finger power exercises based on Charles-Louis Hanon’s famous exercises
  • Sight reading
  • Playing and identifying all 24 major and minor triads

Knowledge

  • Dynamics: pianissimo, piano, mezzo piano, mezzo forte, forte, fortissimo, crescendo, diminuendo, decrescendo
  • Intervals: 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th
  • Tempo indications: largo, adagio, andante, moderato, allegretto, allegro, presto, prestissimo
  • Major & minor triads

Unit 8 Lessons 141–160

Repertoire

  • Musette in D
  • Deta, Deta
  • Allegro in C
  • Dragon Night
  • When the Saints Go Marching In
  • Canoe Song

Skills

  • Finger cross-over and thumb-under
  • More variations on Hanon’s finger exercises
  • Dictating melodies by ear on the staff
  • Review reading chords from a lead sheet

Knowledge

  • Composer Johann Sebastian Bach and the Anna Magdelena Bach notebook
  • Composer Alexander Reinagle
  • Rhythm math: how notes all relate to one another and to the beat
  • Ledger lines
  • Review syncopation

Unit 9 Lessons 161–180

Repertoire

  • Melody for Left Hand (Schytte)
  • Chumbara
  • The Shepherd's Flute (Salutrinskaya)
  • Etude (Biehl)
  • Morning Salute (Gurlitt)
  • Promenade (Reinagle)

Skills

  • Play one-octave scale and arpeggios
  • Voicing with melody in the left hand
  • Transposing a one-octave scale to all 24 keys
  • Staccato in one hand with legato in the other hand

Knowledge

  • Tetrascales, Ladder of 4ths and 5ths
  • Key signature
  • How key signature relates to the circle of 5ths
  • Understanding and performing rhythms in compound meters: 3/8 and 6/8
  • New composers: Ludvig Schytte, Tat'iana Salutrinskaya, Albert Biehl

Bonus Lessons

Repertoire

  • Let it Go
  • Star Wars Main Theme
  • In the Hall of the Mountain King
  • S’vivon
  • Jingle Bells
  • The Imperial March (Darth Vader’s Theme)
  • Who's the (Bat)Man?