Why Learn the Piano?
12th April 2008
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Learning the piano can be a great thing, as long as you have the right teacher and the right resources, and as long as you learn music that you love.  If you love to hear it, then you will probably love to play it. 

There are many reasons for learning to play the piano.  Most people agree that it is a beautiful sounding instrument.  Learning to play the piano, sharpens the mind and body and it can be very therapeutic.

Do Your Children or Grandchildren Learn the Piano?

Recently, research has shown that children who learn the piano do far better in scholastically than their fellow students.  Not only are their artistic and musical skills above the norm, but also their language and mathematics skills are also improved.

Playing the piano also develops a high level of manual dexterity.  It's not just about playing the right keys.  Learning to perform complex pieces with precision and emotion needs time and a human touch.  (One suspects this is why professional pianists have not been replaced by computers.) 

Children generally live 'in the moment'.  Many find it difficult to appreciate the value of something until they are older.  Learning the play the piano involves hard, steady work over a long period of time.  This can mean that many children want to give up piano lessons before they have really achieved very much; they can become unmotivated in their lessons.  It is therefore, particularly important to choose a teacher for your children who can make lessons fun, interesting and fulfilling for them.  A teacher, who can make lessons exciting and enjoyable for your children.  Learning should be fun, so it is imperative that children want to go to lessons.  In this way, they are likely to achieve their best.

I spoke to Dr Elizabeth Sampson (LGSM) who is a full-time music teacher, based in Melton Mowbray, specialising in piano and music theory tuition.  As well as teaching children of all ages, Liz sets no upper age limit.  She encourages mature students. 

What About Adults Learning the Piano?

Adults are living longer, retiring earlier, and maintaining healthier lives.  Researchers have also noticed that there has been a growing shift from a linear life plan - one that reserves education for the young, work for the middle aged, and leisure for the elderly - to a blended life plan - one that blends education, work, and leisure at all points throughout life (Cross1).  As a result many more adults are taking up the piano.

How many times have we heard someone say, 'I never really got started trying to learn piano and have always regretted it'.  While many potential adult students feel that they are 'too old to learn', studies have shown that intelligence doesn't diminish with age, although the rate of learning may slow down. 

Generally, adults are highly motivated to learn; they come to music because they want to, not because a parent is requiring piano lessons.  They also often have greater self-discipline, drive, and enthusiasm.

In spite of their enthusiasm, they are often more insecure, more self-consciou

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