In the program Soft Mozart, music notes become visual and interactive. For the first time in the history of music, a musical notation starts “talking” to a student: the program is receptive to every movement and helps arrange all the nessesary skills for effective learning.
A sheet of music changes according to the beginner's level of visual perception, and numbers help define at what stage of development his or her skills are.
The most important rule, when teaching using Gentle Piano, is the rule of the effect of note names. Having its name there on the note gives a greater advantage for developing a student’s fine motor skills and coordination technique. The opportunity to see the name of each note and find its counterpart easily on the piano keys allows a student to pay more attention to developing fine motor skills instead of hunting for keys.
The presentation of a music text without the opportunity to see note names claims a beginner’s attention while he or she is counting lines and spaces. Visual perception requires a lot of energy to be able to orient in these lines and spaces. That's why, for beginners, presenting the music sheet on the 2nd, 4th, 5th and 6th times must be simple so it will help his or her coordination. The development of a visual skill must be well trained.
As a rule, many teachers, who are used to teach using the traditional system, try as soon as possible to get away from a vertical presentation of a music stave. They shouldn't do that because the unification of each line and space with a piano key must be stuck in a student's mind so later he or she can sight-read rapidly by means of the fine motor skills.
The Hiner Method works on sight-reading only when a student is already fluent in fine motor skills and visually fine motor coordination.
How do you know when it's the right time to start?
If the begginer is able to play most of the Introductory songs by heart and is able simultaneously to perform them with a teacher or with our Tutorial Video, it means that he or she can sight-read pretty well.
The First Album for sight-reading is Nursery Primer 0. In this album, there is a monophonic tune, which passes from one hand to the other. A student should start sight-reading using separate hands. When a student plays the album using only the right or left hand, he or she learns quickly where a note sheet passes from one hand to another because if he or she accidentally starts to play the other hand’s part, its sound slows down.
It's important, during sight-reading, to read a few pieces without stopping and polishing mistakes so the student won't be able to memorize the text. The quantity is important not the quality in the playing pieces and you should focus on decreasing the number of mistakes, while not worrying about artistic quality just yet.
You can even set a goal for your student to play one or another album using either the right or the left hand and not make more than 5 mistakes. You should gradually level down this criterion. The goal is to be able to sight-read with minimum errors.
Passing from the 2nd to the 4th, and then to the 5th and the 6th presentations must be gradual. This gradual approach must be provided by the student, who should be the one to decide when to move on to more challenging pieces. As a rule, some students try to pass to the 6th presentation as soon as possible. It's so important for a teacher to move the student forward at the right time because the goal of the lessons is for the student to make personal progress, not to arrive at level 6 as quickly as possible.
Often, when a student plays pieces with a lot of chromatic signs, he or she should get back to the 4th and even the 2nd presentation. The opportunity to see sharp notes (diesis) and flat notes (bemolle) without having to think about them or search for them on the keys--all these help a student put his or her attention at the muscle level. Then students start understanding the scales at a muscle level.
The passage from sight-reading on the 6th presentation to common notes should be carried out gradually, too. If a student easily sight-reads on the 5th level and higher, you can give him or her a paper music sheet of the 1st-2nd levels.
In the program Soft Mozart, often if a piece of music is performed not to the end or without melismatas and other embellishments, you should work with the program and the text. Such a combination helps a student master sight-reading quite easily using a paper music text.