1st Edition

Dynamic Group-Piano Teaching
Transforming Group Theory into Teaching Practice

ISBN 9781138241435
Published May 16, 2017 by Routledge
252 Pages

USD $54.95

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Book Description

Dynamic Group-Piano Teaching provides future teachers of group piano with an extensive framework of concepts upon which effective and dynamic teaching strategies can be explored and developed. Within fifteen chapters, it encompasses learning theory, group process, and group dynamics within the context of group-piano instruction. This book encourages teachers to transfer learning and group dynamics theory into classroom practice. As a piano pedagogy textbook, supplement for pedagogy classes, or resource for graduate teaching assistants and professional piano teachers, the book examines learning theory, student needs, assessment, and specific issues for the group-piano instructor.

Table of Contents


List of Figures



Section 1 Background of Group-Piano & Working With Groups

Chapter 1 Group-Piano 101


Historical Overview of Group-Piano and Its Context Today

Categories of Group-Piano Lessons

Occasional Group Classes

Regular Group Classes

3 Weeks of Private Lessons; Group Lesson Only During 4th Week

4 Weeks of Private Lessons; Group Lesson Also During 4th Week

Private (or Partner) Lesson & Group Class Every Week

A Note About Partner Lessons

A Private Lessons and a Group Lesson on Alternating Weeks

Occasional Group Camps

Group-Piano Only and the Teaching Space

Benefits of Group-Piano for Student and Teacher

Considerations Regarding Group-Piano

Special Skills Required of a Group-Piano Teacher

Student Readiness for Group-Piano Lessons

Teacher Readiness for Group-Piano Lessons

A Final Note of Caution

Pedagogy in Action (Questions to Answer)

References for Chapter 1

Chapter 2 Brief Overview of Learning Theories That Teachers Should Consider



Learning Theories

What is Learning?


Psychosocial Development, Cognitive Development & Human Learning

Other Theorists & Theories for Teachers to Consider and Explore

Discussion & Implementation in the Piano Class

Reflection on the Use of Learning & Developmental Theories in the Group-Piano Setting

Two Sample Classes

Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 2

Chapter 3 Group Theory and Group Dynamics in the Piano Class


Two Vignettes of Group-Piano Students

Vignette One: First-Year Group Piano

Vignette Two: Beginning Seven-Year-Old Group Piano

The Power of the Group

Group Dynamics and Group Growth: Background & Relevance to Group-Piano

Stages of Group Growth



Norming & Performing


Discussions of the Stages of Group Growth and Cohesiveness

Priming the Group for Success and Considerations for Group-Piano Instructors

Pedagogy in Action

Additional Reading & Exploration

References for Chapter 3

Chapter 4 Addressing Individual Learning Styles Within the Group-Piano Class


Preferred Learning Modes

Individual Personality Types & Learning Styles

Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

Kiersey & Golay Personality Types

Kolb’s Learning-Style Preferences

Reinforcing Cognitive Strategies & Learning Styles in the Piano Lab

Useful Cognitive Strategies

Using Learning Theories & Kolb’s Learning Styles in the Group-Piano Class

Engaging Active Experimenters & Reflective Observers in Technical Exercises

Engaging Thinkers & Feelers in Improvisation


Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 4

Section 2 Group-Piano Students: Adults

Chapter 5 The Music Major: College-Level Group Piano



Philosophy for Including Piano Proficiency in the Undergraduate Music Curriculum

Suggested & Required Skills

Placement Tests

NASM Requirements & Recommendations

Overview of Piano Skills Required of Music Majors



Purpose & Materials

Piano Proficiency Exam

After the Proficiency & Supplemental Resources

College Text Overviews

Alfred’s Group Piano for Adults

Piano for the Developing Musician

Keyboard Musicianship

Contemporary Class Piano

Piano Lab

Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 5

Chapter 6 The Non-Major: Adults Groups for College Credit


The Non-Music Major

Philosophy & Theory


Individual Assessment

Piano Placements

College Texts for Non-Majors

Piano 101

Piano for Pleasure

Keyboard Fundamentals

Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 6

Chapter 7 Leisure Adults in the Independent Studio, Community Schools, and Other Locations



Grouping Adults


Lifespan Development

Characteristics of Adult Learners

Common Characteristics of Adults & Considerations for Teachers

Cognitive Changes Associated with Age

Physical Changes Associated with Age

Other Implications of Age on Piano Study: The Importance of Clarity

Needs of the Leisure Student and the Curriculum

Serious Music Study or RMM: Two Paths Toward Musical Development

Considerations when Designing Curriculum and Choosing Materials

Adult Leisure Text Review

Adult Piano Adventures

Adult Piano Method (Hal Leonard Student Library)

Piano Fun for Adult Beginners & Piano Fun

Play Piano Now!

I Used to Play Piano

Returning to the Piano

Handbooks for Teachers of Adults

Making Music at the Piano: Learning Strategies for Adult Students

Recreational Music Making Handbook for Piano Teachers

Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 7

Section 3 Group-Piano Students: Children

Chapter 8 Overview of Group Music Programs for Children



Historic Group Programs for Children – European Influences

Dalcroze Eurythmics

Applications to Group-Piano

The Kodlày Method

Applications to Group-Piano


Applications to Group-Piano

Asian Influences

The Suzuki Method

Applications to Group-Piano

Yamaha Music Education Program

Applications to Group-Piano

North American Influences

Kindermusik International


Music for Young Children

Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 8

Chapter 9 Group-Piano for Children in the Independent Studio & K-12 Schools


Overview of Group-Piano for Children

Philosophy & Theory of Teaching Children in Groups

Typical Types of Group-Piano for Children & Curricular Considerations

Methods & Materials for Children in Beginning Group-Piano

Average-Age Beginning Methods

Alfred’s Basic Group Piano Course

The Music Tree

Other Methods That May Be Used

Resources for Advancing Groups

Ensemble Resources

Alfred Basic Piano Library Ensemble Books

Hal Leonard Student Piano Library Ensemble Books

Ogilvy Music Ensembles

Ensemble Music for Group Piano



Teacher Books on Games

Useful Books for Theory, Improvisation, Composition, & Music History

General Resources for Teachers


Resources for Teachers

Books for Students



Books for Teachers

Books for Students

Music History & World Music

Materials Designed for Group-Piano Camps

Books Specifically for K-12 Piano Classes

Pedagogy in Action

References & Teacher Resources for Chapter 9

Section 4 The Group-Piano Instructor

Chapter 10 Advantages and Disadvantages of Group Teaching & Additional Thoughts on Assessment from the Instructor’s Perspective


Advantages of Group-Piano Teaching

Disadvantages of Teaching Group-Piano


Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 10

Chapter 11 Characteristics of Effective Group-Piano Teachers


Effective Group Teachers


Lesson Planning & Realization

Group Engagement

Measurement of Individual Outcomes

Student Motivation


Pedagogy in Action

References & Resources for Chapter 11

Chapter 12 Common Pitfalls of Beginning Group-Piano Instructors & How to Avoid These Mistakes



Policy & Procedural Issues

Lesson Scheduling & Length of Term

Unclear or Unstated Expectations for Students and Families

Curricular Issues

Inappropriate Lessons & Materials

Lack of Specific Long-Term Goals & Objectives

Inadequate Reinforcement

Teaching Difficulties, Issues, & Assessment Concerns

Teaching Not Telling

Pacing, Flexibility, & Wasted Time

Too Few Group Activities & Little Serious Learning or Musicianship

Classroom Management

Individual & Group Assessment

Final Thoughts & Ideas

Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 12

Chapter 13 Establishing Trust Within the Group



Teacher’s Role

Sample Student Activities

Rehearsing Ensemble Repertoire

Improvising Accompaniments

Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 13

Chapter 14 Logistics of Teaching Group-Piano




Optimal Time of Day


Space in the Studio – Considerations

Ancillary Materials

Books & Multiple Copies of Music

Games & Manipulatives

Pedagogy in Action

References for Chapter 14

Chapter 15 Technology for the Group-Piano Instructor



Basic Technology

Digital & Electronic Pianos

Computers, Audio, & Visual Aids

Additional Technology to Enhance the Learning Experience

Keeping Up With Technological Change

Pedagogy in Action

References & Resources for Chapter 15

Appendix A.1

Appendix A.2

Appendix A.3

Appendix B

Appendix C.1

Appendix C.2

Appendix C.3

Appendix D.1

Appendix D.2

Appendix E.1

Appendix E.2

Appendix E.3

Appendix E.4

Appendix E.5



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Pamela D. Pike is Aloysia L. Barineau Associate Professor of Piano Pedagogy at Louisiana State University.