Kids Love Music
Mr. Hoffman’s top priority as a music teacher is to make sure students experience music at every lesson. This is really hard to do with the standard method of teaching piano, which trains children how to sight-read songs from a book. Reading notes off a page isn’t a musical experience, it’s an intellectual one. Instead, Mr. Hoffman teaches music by teaching songs. Some call this learning to play by ear, but Mr. Hoffman calls it putting the music inside the child. Kids come away from their very first lesson with a song they know and can play and enjoy.
Kids Are Naturally Curious
Kids are naturally curious and want to learn things by trying them out. If a child wants to learn how to ride a bike it doesn’t do much good to sit the child down first and talk about gravity, friction, and Newton’s laws of motion. The best thing to do is let the child get on the bike and try it. In order to teach music theory, Mr. Hoffman starts with a musical experience that illustrates the principle he wants to teach, and then helps the child see the new concept in the context of the music. This engages the child’s sense of discovery and makes them eager to learn.
Kids Enjoy Visual, Self-Paced Learning
Everyone knows that kids love to watch videos, and Mr. Hoffman’s online video lessons are fun to watch. He uses lots of visual music teaching tools to help keep kids engaged. His many years of experience in teaching piano students allow him to anticipate what children will need in order to learn the concepts he’s presenting. Lessons are well paced, with concepts chosen to build naturally on previous learning. Kids can also learn at their own pace, by re-watching parts of lessons that they didn’t understand the first time, or by watching several lessons a day if they’re learning quickly. By having more control over the pace of the lessons, it’s easier for kids to find that sweet spot between frustration and boredom where learning happens best.
Kids Love Interactive Teaching
Mr. Hoffman’s video lessons aren’t meant to be passively watched. His interactive teaching style makes kids feel like he’s speaking right to them. He gives clear, direct instructions, asks questions and leaves time for children to answer, and often directs that children stop the recording so that they can practice something on their own piano keyboard. Lessons are also short, most of them around ten minutes, to best suit a young child’s attention span.
Kids Love Fun and Games
After Mr. Hoffman teaches a new concept, he likes to use it in a game. Simple guessing games and find-it games give children a chance to review what they’ve just learned in a fun way. He also uses stories to teach note names on the piano and other concepts. Kids love the way he explains the importance of good piano posture in Lesson 3 by showing them that eating a bowl of cereal with your hand wrapped around the back of your neck might not be the best idea.