Piano Lessons: There’s an app for that too!

Most Lessons on Piano Marvel have a video to introduce new skills.

I am a geek, I know! I have been obsessed with all things educational & technological!
So what about Piano Lessons?  Yup, There’s an app for that too!

Most Lessons on Piano Marvel have a video to introduce new skills.
Most Lessons on Piano Marvel have a video to introduce new skills.

I have been using Piano Marvel for the last couple of months to brush up on my piano skills.  Lets face it, I was never that good.  I took classes with a kindly lady.  She made me do scales over and over and over and over and…… well, you get the idea.  I wonder sometimes if she is still around, I am pretty sure she was in her 70’s back when I took lessons in the late 70’s.  Yes, it’s been that long!

I came across Piano Marvel while searching some way to support lessons for my 8 year old, as well as spruce up my own skills. With music being left out more and more at school I wanted to encourage her to continue with lessons even when we can’t work them into our budget or schedule.  As it turns out, I am obsessed by it! It is more than an app, it is a fully interactive software that makes piano learning fast and fun.

Piano Marvel allows students to learn progressively through different levels.
Piano Marvel allows students to learn progressively through different levels.

Each level has a PDF Method Book with an over view of everything you will learn.  There are also videos on the lessons explaining the new concepts introduced in the lesson.  This system is so comprehensive.  It is being used not only by parents, but by piano teachers as another way to get their students engaged.
Each of the lessons have a backing track that plays with you so it doesn’t get so monotonous.

I love the instant feedback that the computer gives you too.  The design shows you where you went wrong in the piece and you can work to bring up your score.

Piano Marvel shows you what notes you played wrong, early or late.
Piano Marvel shows you what notes you played wrong, early or late.

You can also work on songs in the library, so you have a repertoire that you can play.  There is so much sheet music included in this program that I can’t image how much it would cost if you were to go out and buy it in books.  The Library works much like the lessons, the songs are broken up into smaller sections that start out slow, so the student can perfect each section before combining them at speed.

Piano Marvel lets you track your students, children or your own practice time and award levels.
Piano Marvel lets you track your students, children or your own practice time and award levels.

I love that the program allows you pull reports of how well your student is doing and how much they are practicing. These reports make it easy to reward your kids (or yourself) for doing such great work!

You can explore more about Piano Marvel, see some videos or take a tour by clicking here PIANO MARVEL  You can also get a free trial account by clicking here:  Free Account

Get a Discount

When you are ready to can sign up for the full benefits of being a Piano Marvel Student or perhaps you are already a Piano Teacher who would like to find out how to introduce this method into your own studio   you will get $3 off a month by using the Promo Code PianoCyndi at check out!

What you will need

You need a Midi Compatible keyboard and high speed internet.  We bought the Casio Privia px160 full size keyboard and I am so amazed by it!  It feels like a real piano and sounds amazing.  It has sorts of other sounds that my daughter likes to use while practicing just to keep things entertaining I guess, but for me the concert piano sound is perfect!  It was the perfect choice for us with small condo living (volume control).

However you can find great keyboards for less just make sure that it has a midi in it.  You can also start out with a mini keyboard, however keep in mind it won’t be long before you need the full size 88 key piano.

 

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Teach Me Apps by 24x7digital #AvoidTheSummerSlide

Teach Me 1st Grade

Teach Me 1st Grade This is another app that in my opinion is 100% educational!  It is part of our summer screen time strategy.  My daughter has to earn screen time by spending time on one of 4 educational apps of my choice or by reading her chapter book.  “No Mine Craft for you until you have edjamekated yerself kid!”  Yes, I am just that mean!

So the Teach Me Apps are great! They offer Teach Me Toddler, and Teach Me’s for K-3rd.  They also have a new one called Teach Me Math Facts.  This summer we are finishing up Teach Me 1st Grade and starting on (hopefully) 2nd Grade.

Teach Me 1st Grade Fish Store Reward Area
The fish swim away when you touch the tank

This app is bright and has loads of little animated graphics that help to keep the kids engaged.  There are several play areas, where the kids can “spend” the coins they have earned answering questions.  Coins can be spent on things for a fish tank in the Fish Store, or in the Art Shop.  Coins are fairly easy to earn and the rewards are not too spread out so they work as great motivators.

Teach Me 1st Grade Math Problem. Teach Me 1st Grade Math Problem.

   I like that the kids have to write in their answers, for added printing practice.  They don’t just get to click on the correct answer, they have to write the numbers or spell the word on the lined writing space.  I have seen an improvement in my daughters printing due mainly to this.  She has been very lazy about taking her time and writing neatly, and this app demands just that. It is not a bad idea to pick up on of those stylus pen thingies (that is the technical term) for older kids.  A finger will work either way.

I also like that it switches back and forth between math problems and sight words and spelling.  I think it helps keep it interesting.

Teach Me 1st Grade Mastery Levels.
My daughter and I both benefit from being able to see her progress in math, spelling and sight words.

The curriculum looks like it covers the basics and appears to meet the major benchmarks for learning in each grade.  My daughter likes it and really doesn’t mind doing it, even though she knows this is, for us, the summer version of homework.  She says that she wishes her homework during the school year were like this!

This app appears to be best for reviewing materials.  It does give hints, but they don’t really tell you how to get the answer, it just gives you the answer.  This really isn’t a problem though, but as we all know, practice makes perfect.

Gus on the Go: A Language Learning Adventure App Giveaway & Review

Gus on the Go

The Giveaway will run 2/19/15 – 3/5/15.

Click Here for a Rafflecopter giveaway of Gus on the Go

Gus on the Go  a Language Learning Adventure Review & Giveaway

 

Gus on the Go

This App is brilliant!  There are no other explanations!  Gus on the Go is without a doubt the best learning app I have come across.  Go get it now, I love it!  I bought it on a recommendation from a friend and I am so happy that I did!

This is the first App that I have reviewed, not because I haven’t found fun apps, but because I had not yet found one that, that in my opinion, had learning the learning outcomes that I want to see.  Gus on the Go changed that for me.  The learning outcomes are clear and strong, and the entertainment level knocks it out of the park and keeps kids coming back.

Gus on the GoGus on the Go has 26 languages and the kids learn 89 words in each one version.  I kid you not, my daughter (7 years) blew through this thing in a few sittings. Not because it was too easy, but because it was so much fun! (What’s more, I didn’t mind!)

The balance between learning, practice and fun is exactly right with this app.  Each section introduces you to new words with cartoon graphics.  In order to go onto the next level, you have to earn trophy’s by playing fun mini games.  The games are activities like recognizing a Gus on the Goword in French (I bought the French one) then popping the corresponding balloons with the correct animal in them, or participating in a horse race by knowing the correct vocabulary words.

The graphics are colorful, clean, and engaging and the games are simply fun, so fun that my daughter didn’t want to put it down.  Heck, I wanted to play it too!  I was surprised at how quickly she learned the vocabulary words and she is actually retaining them.

Gus on the GoThe only problem with it is that we want more!  More levels, vocabulary and sentence structures please!  I sent an email over to the nice folks at Gus on the Go and told them how much I love their app, but could they please hurry up with some more levels?  The lovely Alice wrote back explaining that the Gus on the Go Team is actually only 2 people (yes, the two of them created this amazing learning tool). She and her counterpart Yono are working hard on the sequel that will teach short sentences using stories.  With any luck it will be available early this summer.  All I can say is that my family can’t wait!

It gets even better!  Alice is giving us 5 iOS promo codes to give away to randomly chosen winners!

The Giveaway will run 2/19/15 – 3/5/15.

a Rafflecopter giveaway of Gus on the Go

Gus on the Go is available on Itunes and Android Play Store.