A long as I can remember, I have wanted to learn how to play the piano. I remember being four or five, watching my great grandmother play music on her beautiful upright piano and learning to play “Mary Had a Little Lamb”. We have never been able to purchase our own piano, but we have had several keyboards over the years. My children have always loved tinkering with music. I was very excited to hear that I would be reviewing the Music & Creativity – Foundation Course from Simply Music.
About the Course
The first thing I need to share with you is that this course is completely FREE. You simply visit the website and sign up using your email and you’re in! The entire course is online so all you need to get playing is an internet connection, a device (computer, tablet, or smartphone), and a piano or keyboard to play on. There is also downloadable material you may print if you choose.
Our Music & Creativity Program is a breakthrough, self-study piano and keyboard method that looks at music in a totally new light. It has students of all ages improvising and playing great sounding blues, classical, contemporary and accompaniment pieces – immediately – from their very first lessons.From the Simply Music website https://pianoonline.com
Below is a video from the website to give you a good overview of what the Music & Creativity program entails and how the approach used is unique and effective…
The lessons (21 in total) are self-paced, allowing you to get comfortable with each part of each piece of music before moving on to the next. Each song lesson includes soundtracks you can download and play along with which I found to be very helpful. If you play the wrong note, you can tell immediately!
After viewing the first couple of videos and looking over the course materials, I decided that I would try to have Isaiah (17yo) go through several lessons and see how he did. However, he was completely uninterested in learning to play piano, which I found disappointing as HE was the one that prompted me to purchase a keyboard in the first place!
I decided that Joey most likely didn’t have the patience and attention for music lessons at this stage, so what’s a mom to do? I sat down and started going through the lessons myself!
The lessons start off with some basics about posture, fingering, the keys and their notes, etc. These introductory lessons are very brief. You are playing successions of notes right off the bat and by lesson 3, you are learning to play your first song – no sheet music required! The way each song is broken down into “sentences” which are learned, then practiced til they are natural, made learning each piece of music quick and easy. In the very first song, you are using both your right and left hands to play notes simultaneously, which is where I have always floundered in my previous attempts to learn the piano.
I found it very helpful to be able to pause the video so I could practice each part along the way until it came easily to me, before moving on to the next portion of the song. The course teaches a total of 10 songs. So far, I have mastered one and am well on my way to mastering a second. Sadly, at the time of this writing I haven’t been able to practice in almost a week, so we will see how much “muscle memory” I have retained!
If you have an older child who really wants to learn to play the piano, they might do well with this course if they have the attention span and plenty of opportunity to practice, as well as lots of support from you. That being said, I really feel that this course is better suited to teens and adults. It’s not that the lessons are hard – in fact the methodology used makes learning to play quite simple. But the videos do contain quite a bit of explanation and some kids might zone out during those parts. That is really the only drawback I can see to this program and I found the lessons and the songs taught to be enjoyable. I am giving this course 4 stars ONLY becuase I personally do not feel it is appropriate for most younger children who might grow bored viewing some lessons.
Make sure you click the graphic below to read what other families had to say about Simply Music!