Music 549

MUSC 549

Catalog Entry

MUSC549 Piano Pedagogy
Three hours lecture, demonstration, laboratory (3).

Prerequisite: Level 4 proficiency in piano.

Survey of piano teaching materials, methods and approaches, with emphasis on elementary through intermediate level students; practical demonstration and application of material; observation of teaching; supervised student teaching.


Detailed Description of Content of Course

1. Teaching beginning piano students (individuals and groups)

        a. Middle-C methods
        b. Multi-key methods
        c. Eclectic methods

2. Evaluating methods and materials
3. Aspects of piano teaching:

        a. Rhythm
        b. Technique
        c. Sight-reading
        d. Ear-Training
        e. Theory

  • Memorization
  • Improvisation and composition
  • Productive practice

4. Studio Management
5. Stylistic considerations:

        a. teaching repertoire from all periods
        b. ornamentation
        c. contemporary techniques

6. Practical psychology for the piano teacher
7. Group lessons
8. Recitals


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

The course is conducted through lecture-demonstrations by the teacher, oral presentations by the students, class discussions and experiments, and work on individual and group projects. The class makes use of the extensive library of pedagogical materials available for their study as they learn to make judgments on the comparative value of the immense amount of piano teaching materials being marketed. In addition, students will observe private lessons of local teachers and will teach, under supervision of the instructor, pupils of the Community Arts School.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

At the conclusion of the course, the student will have developed better teaching skills and methods to be an effective piano teacher. Development of critical faculty for making judgments about materials and method books is very important in this course. The student is encouraged to approach problems in a creative and individual manner, rather than being required to memorize rote formulae. A major goal is the development of a person's own unique teaching style. Through supervised teaching, the student learns new ways of meeting needs of individual students and how to handle better problems, which arise in day-to-day teaching. Students registered for graduate credit are expected to complete an additional research project and/or paper on some aspect of piano pedagogy chosen from a list of topics suggested by the instructor.


Assessment Measures

The student's growth and development as a teacher is assessed through class discussion and projects and through a log kept of teaching of one particular piano student's. This log is read several times during the semester by the teacher, who gives comments and suggestions. A videotape of the student teaching, with actual children, is helpful as self-assessment for the student as well as the instructor for the course. Each student must also complete a final paper, which is designed as answers to a series of questions which help the student to clarify his or her own teaching methods and philosophy.


Other Course Information


Approval and Subsequent Reviews

April 2002 Revised E. Fellin, Chairman