Wow, thanks for all the great responses! The last post in this category was in 2004, so I wasn't expecting any.

So many thoughts scrambled in my brain now. \:\)

Dolce, I hadn't really considered that I was trusting the teacher with the musical education of my child, just that I was trusting her with the introduction of the beginning of piano playing. After reading some of the other threads and forums here, I see teachers interviewing the student, and parents interviewing teachers. Frankly, it never crossed my mind to be that thorough. Although, I'm still not sure I know what I would be looking for. We bought a Clavinova CVP-208 and people thought we were crazy for spending that kind of money on 2 kids that had never touched a musical instrument before. We asked the store owner if he recommended any teacher, and he gave us a name. She was full, but refered her mom. And wala, we began.

I play no instrument, and have had no musical training. My wife has a couple years of piano, and some High School marching band playing the flute.

Your example of reading and writing suggests that as with language, after becoming proficient at reading and writing music, the student would be able to play by ear. So, all methods should produce, at some level, a student who could play by ear? Is that true? Or, do some methods not teach that aspect? Or were you talking about the problem of students not learning to read and write because they lose their motivation if they play by ear?

I guess, at the heart of some of these questions is that I don't know how a typical student would progress, or if my children are progressing appropriately. i.e. a good student would be at level x in 3 years, y in 5...

Jon, my son is asking to play the drums. At first, I thought this was just a fad (I think he first asked at about 4 years old), what boy doesn't want to play the drums? But, he does seem to want to -- at least he is still asking. The main issue with that is.... NOISE. \:\) I haven't really thought through how to handle this, or if this is the right choice. (Yes, I know, relax and let him enjoy music. \:\) )

At some point I want him introduced to the guitar and to have some education regarding the other features of the digital piano (i.e. recording tracks, splitting the keyboard to play multiple instruments, using the rhythms, playing with midi, etc.). I'm not sure when or how to do that. Maybe these are more high school activities, so let him do drums now? Suggestions?

Karisofia, thanks for reminding me to have fun. My son enjoys playing, but my daughter does have a tendancy to get frustrated when she can't play it right, or if my wife corrects her. She would enjoy putting on a concert, and I'll play it up more when they want me to listen.

Thanks again for all your responses.