It’s easy to set up. All you need is a cell phone, tablet, laptop or home computer with a decent sound system and some flexibility in your practice space for adjusting your camera angle. No other equipment is necessary.
PianoGarden offers online lessons on Zoom and Google Meet.
How are online lessons different from having lessons in person? Remote lessons offer a surprisingly intimate experience. Viewing one another through electronic screens is different than meeting in person, and to be sure, the sound quality is not exactly the same. But all of the basic components of a piano lesson are still present—physical considerations like posture and hand position—as well as such elements as tempo, rhythm, basic dynamics, pitch, and so on.
The surprising advantage of remote meetings is that now lessons can happen from a great distance! Remote teaching has opened PianoGarden to students who live very far away.
Typically I ask students to set up their device so that I can see their profile. That way, I can see posture, hands on keys, torso, and so on. We can fine-tune your set up in your first lesson, including how to maximize your audio capacity.
In addition to your keyboard instrument, you will need a reliable internet connection and a device with a decent sound system. The quality of sound available on your keyboard instrument is also a factor.
You will also need access to a Google Drive so we can share copies of music and completed written assignments like theory or compositions. This is done on a weekly basis by scanning materials or photographing them with a cell phone, and emailing them.
A pencil and notebook at the keyboard is a given, so you can make notes.
For young students, we will need to arrange a notetaker, whether it be a parent or myself. Students ages 10 and older are coached to take their own notes.
Very young beginning students are also required to have an adult present who can offer technical and other support (this person can double as note-taker).
Frequently Asked Questions (concerning online lessons)
Do online lessons cost more?
No, the charge for online lessons is the same as in person lessons. However, PianoGarden offers a discount to student families who take their own notes. To learn more, click the Registration tab and go to Pricing.
How effective are remote lessons?
Remote lessons have proven to be not only effective but highly enjoyable. The lessons have a different flavor which can be hard to define. There is a kind of intimacy available, with less distraction, when we are both focusing through the lens of a camera.
Do I need a special kind of keyboard for online lessons?
No. We can use what you already have, whether it is acoustic or electronic. The better your instrument sounds on your end, the more we have to work with. That is true from a remote standpoint, just as it is from the perspective of your own musical growth.