Lesson 8

Five Woodpeckers

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159 Comments

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      I’m glad to hear that!

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    Hannah

    Hi thank you for doing these lessons my dad used to be in a band So mucie runs in the family ????????????????????

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      That’s wonderful! I hope you and he can jam together sometime. πŸ™‚

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      Thanks! I’m glad you’re enjoying our lessons.

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    ry

    fat catssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssssseeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

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    Michelle

    This is very helpful Mr.Hoffman its great thanks

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      You’re welcome! I’m glad you enjoyed it.

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    amy

    can you help me curve my fingers it seems that I can`t do it.

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      Don’t worry – it’s perfectly normal to find this difficult a first. Playing with curved fingers takes practice. Usually, the best thing you can do is to remind yourself to relax your hands. Try this activity and see if it helps: Stand up and just shake out your arms, with floppy wrists, hands, and fingers. Then stop shaking and simply let your arms and hands dangle down by your side. With hands and arms completely relaxed, glance down at the natural shape of your hand. You should see that your fingers in a β€œneutral” position – a gentle, natural curve in your fingers. This relaxed, neutral shape is what you always want to come back to as you play. I would also recommend reviewing our blog post on Tips for Keeping Fingers Relaxed at the Keyboard. I hope that helps. Good luck and happy playing!

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    kylee

    I love this website but will I beable to play the song that you play in the begining of the tutorieule

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      It’s a fun piece, isn’t it? It’s pretty challenging, though, so it will take a great deal of diligent practice to get to that point. If you want to see a video of the composer, Jon Schmidt, playing the whole piece, you can watch it here. Enjoy!

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    Benjamin

    I just did this two hands, and I only learnt it ten minutes ago.

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      Ah, I’m glad you’re finding it simple for now. Be patient, however, and I’m sure you’ll find later lessons more challenging. Good luck and happy playing!

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    Simon

    Hi I like all the lesson , but you do not reply and I’m sad. Can you reply this time because I want to talk to you. You are a good teacher.????????

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      I’m glad you’re enjoying our lessons! I’m sorry if you left a question I didn’t reply to. Can I help you with something?

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    Joanna

    Have you heard of sound of music?

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      Yes, our family loves that movie!

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    Mckenzie

    Mr. Hoffman,
    thank you for putting all of these great lessons on your website. Do you have any advise for me about keep my fingers curved I can never seem to keep them curved.

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      When fingers won’t stay curved, the culprit is usually tension. Try stepping away from the piano for a minute and find a hard surface like a table or your piano bench. Rest your fingers on the surface in a relaxed, curved position. Try gently lifting each finger one at a time while keeping your other fingers and wrist relaxed and still. Also, try applying gentle pressure to the surface one finger at a time – there should be basically no movement in your hand, but you’ll feel your muscles working as each finger presses down. These may seem like little things, but it’s a great way to focus on developing correct finger posture and to develop your muscles. I’d also recommend you review our blog post about Keeping Fingers Relaxed at the Keyboard. I hope that helps!

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      Learning a new skill like playing the piano can definitely be a challenge. Hang in there, though. The rewards are definitely worth it! Do you have any particular questions? You’re welcome to ask them here or email our team at Support@HoffmanAcademy.com and we’ll do our best to help you work through the tough stuff. Good luck and happy playing!

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    Lori

    I’m a grandmother. I am reviewing your lessons, getting ready to teach my 5 year old daughter. I love your technique of teaching in very simple steps. You are awesome!

    My question is, is it important to teach the Solfege Scale or can we get by with the Musical Alphabet. If not, at what point is that important?

    Thank you.

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      That’s wonderful! I’m so glad our lessons are working for you. I do feel that it’s important to use both Solfege and the musical alphabet, even for beginning students. This is because the tones that correspond to the letter names of each note are fixed, while my method uses Movable Do Solfege to teach relationships between notes, like intervals and transposing.

      For instance, if you learned Five Woodpeckers in the C major pentascale, the notes’ letter names would be C D E F G and the Solfege would be Do Re Mi Fa So. However, if you wanted to transpose the song to the G major pentascale, the Solfege stays the same (because Do is always the “tonic” of the pentascale or key signature), but the notes’ letter names would be G A B C D. This is an effective representation of what our ears hear: the melody is the same, but it’s being played with different notes. I hope that makes sense. If you’d like to know more about Solfege and how it is used in the Hoffman Method, check out our blog post, “What is Solfege?” Good luck and happy playing!

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    Adi

    Mr Hoffman, I am a ten year old in Plano, TX, and I’m still a beginner on the piano, and I can never seem to have my fingers curved. They’re always so straight! Do you have any advice for me?

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      It’s wonderful that you’re paying attention to your piano posture! It may take a little time to become comfortable with curved fingers, but the most helpful thing I have found is to remind myself to relax. We often get so worried about posture that it creates tension in our hands and fingers, causing them to straighten and stick out when they shouldn’t. Posture is important, but worry and tension aren’t helpful. Try the “floppy spaghetti arms” we did in the lesson, or try squeezing your hand into a fist for a few seconds and then releasing it. When you release (or stop spaghetti-ing your arms), let them rest naturally and you should find that relaxed, curved finger shape we’re looking for.

      Another tactic is to try playing with the tips of your fingers (rather than the flat pads of your fingers where your fingerprints are). There’s a danger of tension and over-extension in this, so it’s not your long-term goal, but it can be a good reminder to your fingers about how it feels to stay curved.

      I hope that helps! Good luck and happy playing.

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    Rebekah

    I am an 8 year old who lives in Florida. I enjoy your videos so much. I’m having trouble putting each finger down per note. Do you have any advice for me?

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      I’m glad to hear that you are enjoying my piano lessons! As for your question – could you explain a little more what you mean? Is it hard for your five fingers to rest comfortably on five adjacent white keys at the same time, or is it hard to press down one individual note at a time because your fingers want to move together? If it’s the first one, that’s ok – It will become easier as your fingers grow, and the more you practice the more they will be stretched and strengthened.

      If it’s the latter, then I would recommend spending some time every day on finger independence. All this requires is a hard surface – your piano lid, a table, etc. With good piano posture in your hands (staying curved and relaxed), rest your five fingers on the hard surface and then, one at a time, gently press each fingertip onto the surface. Try to consciously relax your other fingers. You can do this at the dinner table or on your school desk, or even against a hard book you’re holding while you wait in line somewhere. It’s a little thing, but if you do it every day it will really help your fingers learn to move on their own and strengthen your muscles and control. You can also place your hand in the same way, but instead of pressing one finger at a time, try lifting one finger at a time just a little bit, keeping the others relaxed and still.

      If neither of those really answers your question, please feel free to write back and I’ll be happy to advise you. I hope that helps! Good luck and happy playing. – Mr. Hoffman

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        Rebekah

        Thank you for replying to me you answered my question with the latter response. I will practice everyday and hope to build my muscle and control in each finger. πŸ™‚

        • Hand-drawn avatar
          Rebekah

          I just did it with two hands!!!!

        • Hoffman Academy logo
          Hoffman Academy

          You’re welcome – thanks for asking! – Mr. Hoffman

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    Dylan

    Hi Mr Hoffman
    I’m really enjoying the lessons and you’re quite good at explaining. I’m in year 4 in New Zealand
    Thank you
    ????????

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      I’m so glad you’re enjoying my lessons! I’m very happy to be your piano teacher, even though we live so far apart. Good luck and happy playing! – Mr. Hoffman

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    J.T.

    First try and I can already play with both hands!????

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      Great job! – Mr. Hoffman

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    Maggie

    I really like the starting song I know three songs and I really like them And I love it ???????????????? Cole

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    Lily scanlan

    The lessons are working great for me and I’m only in 4th grade!!????????????

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      Samantha

      I am in fourth grade too and they are workin really great!

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    naeem

    hi mr.hoffman
    my name is zack and i live in austin this year im in grade 4. thanks for the lessons
    my favorite part is when u do finger puppets : )

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      Lily scanlan

      That’s my favorite part to!!!????????????

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    Lesley

    is this about woody woodpecker? LOL

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    skylar heeter

    thank you for the lessons & they are very helpful .

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    Bella

    These lessons are amazing! I have learned so much from these lessons. Thank you Mr. Hoffman!

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      Thank you! I’m so glad to hear that. – Mr. Hoffman

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    destiny

    i love your lessons!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! this website is so #1

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    David Ellis

    Where do you get those pupets? Also I don’t agree with the last 3 comments-I like bugs !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    Anya

    on my first day i could play it two hands its nice to have more than one song to practice

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    Mila

    Mr Hoffman’s lessons are awesome. I love them. πŸ™‚

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    pamela

    Mr. Hoffman you are such a good teacher and that thing you put at the end of lesson 7 was really different then other piano teachers then I have ever had, and I have had about 35 of them so you are pretty awesome and I really like how you teach us fantastic piano. That make me feel glad we found you online but my dad says it is cheaper and really I think I have lots of fun with you. I never download the stuff I remember because they way you put us into learning it makes us fill our age, well at least me!

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    Chanelle

    Grandma might also have a pet Ferret πŸ™‚

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    Greta GT

    I’m 8 and my parents say that I should spend 10 to15 minutes on the piano each day(new lessons,old lessons,practicing). I wanted to see what you thought about this opinion.

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      I’d say that’s a good plan. I generally prefer using a Practice Checklist rather than a set amount of practice time, but for a beginning student your age, I’d aim to prepare a list that could be accomplished daily in 10-15 minutes. As you progress in your lessons, your practice checklist will begin to grow and the time you spend at the piano will increase. Good luck! – Mr. Hoffman

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    Michelle

    Dear Mr. Hoffman,
    How many Lessons do you recommend per day/per week? I did Lessons 1-7 in two days, so do you have a recommendation or just go at your own pace?
    Thank You so much for your free lessons!

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Hoffman Academy

      I do offer some general recommendations: If you’re a beginner, you should probably aim to complete 2-3 new lessons per week. If you fly through several lessons in a few days, it’s difficult to actually master the concepts in them and properly train your finger muscles. If you press on without mastering more basic concepts first, it’s likely you’ll hit a road block at some point where the lessons suddenly feel extra hard and you can’t seem to progress. On the other hand, going too slowly can put a damper on your enthusiasm, so if the lessons are coming easy, it’s ok to pick up the pace a bit. Another situation where it’s ok to move through the lessons more quickly is if you are already familiar with music theory or piano from previous lessons – then the early lessons are a great review, but you won’t need to spend as much time on them. So, the key is to challenge yourself while still taking time to practice and perfect each lesson and song. You can read more on this subject on our website: When to Move On to the Next Lesson. Good luck! – Mr. Hoffman

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        Alex

        Mr. Hoffman thank you sosososososososososdoasosososososososo much for the online lessons

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    Chris (7)

    Looking for a slug… Yuck!

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    Kayla

    I have acasio piano is that like? πŸ™‚

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    maryann

    An animal that starts with the letter f is a fawn.

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    cindy valentin

    i love this lesson! its so fun and exiting! thanks for the lesson, joseph!

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    Haydn

    Mr. Hoffman I tried something new I did two sets of the keys t the same time it makes a beautiful sound thanks for teaching Haydn

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    Sarahcat

    This was a great lesson, but you could do: Woodpecker, nap, nap, and then looking For some sleep.

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    maryanne

    HI Mr Hoffman,

    when I bend my wrist, I end up pressing the other keys also, and I struggle when I come to my fifth finger. How do I stop this from happening? also how do I exercise my fingers so they become stronger as iIstruggle especially with my fifth finger, when I press a key its very soft.

    Thank you in advance for your answer.

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      jonathan

      it is cool thanks for teaching me to play

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    OLIVER SCHORR

    Hi Mr. Joseph! I love how you make the lessons easy to learn!
    I also love the silly but educational puppets at the end

    Love & Peace ,

    Oliver

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    Mira

    I am almost 8 years old and I am just starting to learn to play piano. Mr. Hoffman’s lessons are fantastic!

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    Naomi

    I like the funny things you do at the end of every video!

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Joseph Hoffman

      Currently we do not offer an advanced piano program. Although, we are planning to add more advanced lessons in the future. Best, Joseph Hoffman

      • Hand-drawn avatar
        Naomi

        Hi, if some of these songs are easy for me can I skip them?
        I used to take lessons with a lady at my old house but now I live somewhere else out of town so I take your lessons.
        I have a Theory book she gave me and some other piano books.

        • Hand-drawn avatar
          Naomi

          My old piano teacher started teaching at the age of twelve

        • Hoffman Academy logo
          Joseph Hoffman

          Hi Naomi! If you have prior piano experience, you may be able to skip some of the lessons. It can be beneficial to review, but if you feel you don’t need the review, try jumping ahead a little. Thanks for watching and happy playing!

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    Jocelyne

    My children love these lessons! It is so convenient to do them at home! Thank you Mr. Hoffman!

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    sabbir

    Dear Mr.Hoffman
    you are rally a great Master. love you. May Allah bless you.

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    Karli

    Mr Hoffman is the BEST piano teacher EVER

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    Sophia

    This is fun! I like the way you introduce the five finger….I am playing a little song…..this is so cool!

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    Pritish

    How do we make sure that when we are playing the piano we don’t tap another note?

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Joseph Hoffman

      I think this just comes down to slow and careful practice. It may take many, many tries. Just be patient and keep at it! It will come!

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    Joi

    Lol! This man is hilarious, especially with the finger puppets!!

    • Hand-drawn avatar
      Joi

      I tried with both hands but my posture needs more work.

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    madison

    At my first try I got everything right!!!!

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    madison

    Your really good at piano. Your way better then my music teacher!!!!:D

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    Renae

    Love the funny stuff after lessons. It reinforces the lesson.

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    Ana

    In this lesson I noticed that our piano brand is the same YAMAHA only mine is a keyboard!

    • Hand-drawn avatar
      Kitta

      Hey I have YAMAHA too! But it’s one of those pianos that don’t have a lid.

      • Hand-drawn avatar
        Angelica

        I have a YAMAHA because my mom and dad bought it for my sister and brother and now I’ m using it.

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    Kitta

    Hi Mr.Hoffman! I love your lessons very much, all I have is one question when we play 5 woodpeckers, and we get to the letter F where our ring finger is, When I press the key all of my other fingers go down on the piano too. How do I stop this? I’ll be waiting for your reply!

    From,
    a student that loves you, Kitta

    • Hand-drawn avatar
      Ana

      You may want to practice holding your other fingers up while your ring finger down you’ll get it soon! Just keep trying and you’ll get it! Good luck πŸ™‚

        • Hand-drawn avatar
          Kitta

          Thanks Ana for answering my question? That’s pretty smart, I didn’t know you were going to answer my question.

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        Naomi

        Great Suggestion! I have done piano for a year and not really known what to do about that! Thanks,Naomi Owens

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    Mae and Jana

    We love your lessons. What a funny ending of the lesson 7!

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    Carolyn

    Mr. Hoffman, we LOVE your lessons. We also LOVE the song that you play at the start of each lesson. We’d like to find the entire song. Is there a place we can hear the entire intro song? Or could you post the title of it? You play it so beautifully.

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Joseph Hoffman

      Hello, and thank you for your kind words–glad you enjoy the lessons! The song I play at the beginning is called “All of Me” by Jon Schmidt. If you search for it on YouTube you can find Jon Schmidt himself playing it–I think you’ll love it!

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        Ana

        You mean the song you play at the beginning of each lesson?

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    Yvette

    Thank you, Mr. Hoffman. I love the way you teach piano.

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    Jess

    your lessons are great mr hoffman,

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    Tamara

    dear Mr. Hoffman:I like your lessons and all but my piano can’t play this song because at the middle of the video it suddenly stops and goes to the end . with that i can’t learn to play piano can I? it stops at
    when your showing us your hand. Is with that all you need to learn? Can I pass to the next lesson? and also it get a little slow, so what you are saying is going faster than what you are doing! but I think that’s internet problems. Please answer back!
    Sincerely Tamara

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Joseph Hoffman

      Hi Tamara, it sounds like it might be a slow internet connection. You might try coming back later or resetting your router. Good luck!

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    Anna

    thanks 4 the help! awesome lesson!

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    Vanessa

    Were do we download the song?? BTW You are good at singing!!! My Dad sings too!

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    Anonymous

    Mr. Hoffman,
    I enjoy your piano lessons very much. I’m so happy that I can play 5 woodpeckers with two hands! It made my day. Thank you so much for all that you do. πŸ™‚

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    Valeria

    great lessons!love how you teach piano

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    Cathy Van Dyke

    My daughter is loving your lessons. She knows how to play 5 woodpeckers with both hands already! :-). She did it even before you asked her to in the lesson.

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      Julia

      Nice lesson. I like the piano street story. Grandma!

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    Barnabas

    Really i was so happy with ur lesson sir.thank u

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    levi

    You said that should put animal that starts with
    F. Here is my animal: frog.

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    Bidan

    My 7 years old son loves this lesson, thank you so much!

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    safaa

    After watching this lesson, my son said: Mr. Hoffman I love you.

    • Hoffman Academy logo
      Joseph Hoffman

      That is very sweet. πŸ™‚ Thank you for sharing that.

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    Eshaan Kusma

    Amazing Mr. HOFFMAN. Thank You So Much

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    frances

    all i can say is thank u very much

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    lola

    Just love it. Mr. Hoffman the very best

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    Sally

    My 5 year old twins are enjoying learning to play with these lessons… they look forward to what silly thing Mr. Hoffman will add to the end of the lesson after the credits!

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    Phyllis

    Great lessons! I’m enjoying the journey.

    • Hand-drawn avatar
      lola

      Love the way Mr. Hoffman teaches the piano.