Generally, teachers demonstrate a movement, a sound or a rhythm and the student matches it. A good teacher demonstrates the correct motion or sound and then carefully observes the student’s attempt to match it. At David’s studio two pianos facilitate easy demonstration and imitation of skills.
A private lesson has proven over centuries to be the best way to teach musical skills. The student practices at home the skills they have learned at each lesson. Every week the student exhibits their improvement in skills to the teacher. The lesson is also a chance for the student to integrate their skills in a way they tend not to do at home. A pianist must be able to perform all of their skills at the same time. Piano playing is like a juggling act, A student has to juggle many skills at the same time.
In addition to the left hand playing different notes than the right, they might also be playing different rhythms. Playing dynamics, perhaps soft in the left hand while loud in the right. Articulations as well, staccato in the right hand and legato in the left. There’s phrasing, shaping, accents and more. Most beginning students really struggling to do even half of these things. A means for integrating all of these skills is needed. Group lessons serve as dependable way for students to work on the integration of all the skills they have learned.
Given a private lesson, a group lessson and practice, a student can expect to be playing simple music within a matter of weeks.
There are so many skills to master that a private lesson is necessary to focus on each one.