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#26454 - 03/03/01 02:59 AM Re: Music for Little Mozarts
Joy123 Offline
Mainstay Member

Registered: 05/22/00
Posts: 566
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Lisa Kalmar:
[B]It would appear, then, that it is commonly felt that a successful marketer of piano methods for older children does not necessarily make an excellent writer for an early childhood keyboard curriculum. Along the same lines, I am wondering if a company that produces excellent early childhood curriculums can offer quality piano pedagogy.

Lisa: Dr. Lorna Heyge who is one of the co-authors, I think, of the new Musikgarten piano course has much keyboard training. I think she has a degree in piano from The Eastman School of Music. She has taught piano. She also taught organ for some time at a college in Greensboro, North Carolina. I would trust her expertise in piano pedagogy. Also, I think Jill Hanagan (spelling?) is the other co-author. She is a piano teacher--has taught for years if I'm not mistaken. I trust Dr. Heyge as an educator. I don't think she would do anything that she did not think was right for children musically. I honestly think she's that kind of person. However, this is going to be a group course designed, I think, for children who have had training like Musikgarten or it's equivalent.

More on that in a moment... But this led to another question: is MFLM supposed to be a group curriculum and, if so, do you think offering it in a private setting isn't doing it justice? Or, as Eric so colorfully characterized it, would it suck either way?

Lisa: The teacher's guide for MFLM says MFLM is equally effective for group or private lessons. Except for a few of the songs which are NOT pretty, I have found MFLM to be a good course that is working well for my 6 year olds. However, I do feel that the Faber's new course for the very young will be even BETTER. I just have that kind of confidence in them, and I'm looking forward to seeing what they develop.

Musikgarten is now advertising a new early childhood group keyboard curriculum called Music Makers: At the Keyboard. The ads says it's an "aural approach, prompting improvisation and composition, and capitalizing on the child's love of group music-making." Their website offers even less info, so I've written off to the company with some specific questions. I'll share them here when I hear back! Has anyone else heard or seen anything at this juncture?

Lisa: I have. I may be wrong about this, but I think this course is geared to about the seven year old child instead of the very young. It is my understanding that the course will be most effective with those who have had Musikgarten training up to that point or something similar. I think this course will be a natural transition into piano from what has been learned in previous Musikgarten classes or the like.

#26455 - 03/04/01 09:19 AM Re: Music for Little Mozarts
Lisa Kalmar Offline
Star Member

Registered: 04/10/00
Posts: 4277
Loc: KC
Joy, I heard back from Musikgarten and they are going to send me a sampler pack, so I'll let you know what I think. Lorna Heyge, Jill Hannagan, and Mary Louis Wilson are the authors. Lorna (whom I did my training with too!) has a background in organ performance with a Ph.d in musicology, Jill (know her also!) has an instrumental background to the best of my knowledge, and I don't know anything about Mary Louise. It should be interesting to see what they come up with, but I think you're right - it probably will not resemble traditional piano lessons as we know them.

Personally, I am DYING for the Fabers early method to come out. I'm sure it's possible for someone to come up with a really good early piano method and am hoping they will be the ones. (Aside: I felt the same about an early religious program for many years. Imagine my excitement when Musikgarten came up with God's Children Sing!)

#26456 - 03/04/01 10:43 PM Re: Music for Little Mozarts
Joy123 Offline
Mainstay Member

Registered: 05/22/00
Posts: 566
[QUOTE]Originally posted by Lisa Kalmar:
[B]Joy, I heard back from Musikgarten and they are going to send me a sampler pack, so I'll let you know what I think.

Lisa: Great! I'll look forward to hearing from you.

Personally, I am DYING for the Fabers early method to come out.

Lisa: Me too! DEAR FABERS: It seems to me that lots of people are wanting and needing this new course. Is there ANY hope of us getting it in the Fall of 2001 instead of having to wait until the Fall of 2002?

#26457 - 03/28/01 06:09 PM Re: Music for Little Mozarts
Eric Offline
Star Member

Registered: 04/04/00
Posts: 2325
Loc: New York, NY
Ditto on the Faber Early Childhood Course! However, I will be retiring from teaching that level. Cubby will be the Alpha and Omega of my early childhood students. (Okay, maybe when his little brother Ozzie comes along, but by then the Faber Book will be released! Yippee!!!)

Cubby will be completing MFLM Book One in the next two weeks. THEN, he will begin the PA Primer, at age five! I feel he's MORE THAN READY for it. MFLM doesn't suck as much as I originally thought, although I don't think it does a good job of preparing the student rhythmically.....and the illustrations are too girly.

#26458 - 03/28/01 06:36 PM Re: Music for Little Mozarts
Lilla Carlisle Offline
Regular Member

Registered: 03/19/01
Posts: 76
Loc: Chicago
I've been previewing the MFLM series in preparation for a preschooler starting this summer. I'm trying to mentally prepare for setting bear/mouse on the keyboard without it looking silly, etc. I don't know. I think I'll be bypassing most of that. The lesson material seems pretty good - the activity book likes good for a preschooler. Can you suggest anything else at this level? For a very small but bright girl.

#26459 - 03/28/01 08:00 PM Re: Music for Little Mozarts
Rhapsody Offline
Star Member

Registered: 11/19/00
Posts: 2329
Originally posted by Eric Rockwell:
.....and the illustrations are too girly.

Hey, wait a minute -- I resemble that remark! Sounds like been reading too much John M. Williams -- or watching The Music Man too much. ;\)

I've been meaning to ask if you are using the MLFM CDs and MIDI disks along with the book. My husband thinks that are extremely well-done (very professional sounding) and wishes he could have had piano as a young child and used the entire MFLM program. Of course, he would have wanted an elephant instead of a bear or mouse. I keep hoping they'll make one. But I don't think anything other than clean fingers belong on the piano keys. The stuffed critters can just sit somewhere else.

Rhapsody, a "girly-girl" with a love for anything Beethovenish (even if it is a small stuffed bear)
There is no cure for boring.

#26460 - 03/28/01 08:38 PM Re: Music for Little Mozarts
Janice Offline
Mainstay Member

Registered: 01/19/01
Posts: 565
Loc: Newalla, Oklahoma, USA
I tried MFLM with one student but he was something else and became bored really fast. His mother had purchased the books but we set them aside. He is 5 now and reads music at the PA 2A level. This is not your everyday boy--he is going to be a "piano playing policeman". Unfortunately he moved to Houston. Anyway, it always bothered me to have stuffed animals on the keys because I was always taught you should never put anything on the keys except your fingers.

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