This course is for younger children starting to learn piano or keyboard, aged roughly 5 to 8 years old. The emphasis is on fun, creativity, and being playful. Many of the lessons also have short film clips (ambient films of nature or from different countries) – which children can create soundtracks for, by playing the pieces they’ve learned, or creating their own music that responds to the film.
It is designed to support children who are learning with a teacher, giving some activities that can run alongside regular lessons. So it isn’t a step-by-step guide for learning the piano or keyboard, and doesn’t cover reading music. But it does give some lessons and activities that help with learning some really useful skills, such as:
- learning by ear,
- using dynamics (louds and softs) to explore emotion,
And if your child is already learning another instrument, and wants to have a go at learning a bit of keyboard/piano as well, this is a good course to dip into and have a go!
- some simple pieces of music, which you can learn by copying the videos, and learning by ear
- how to get a relaxed hand position for playing
- the names of notes on the keyboard
- how to play chords
- how to improvise and make up your own tunes
Meet your teacher – Jo Ballard
Jo is passionate about the ability of music to bring wellbeing to children and young people through teaching, group work and performance. She loves exploring improvisation with children which enables them to find their flow and be creative. She has worked as a composer, a music director for children’s theatre groups, as a summer music school producer, created project-led music podcasts and she brings instrumental teaching and creative music making to children and young people who struggle at school.
Jo is also a trauma-informed practitioner. She studied at Dartington College of Arts where her focus was multi media performance. Her work is often project based and involves getting children and young people together to explore a theme to produce music through composition and ensemble work.