My take on the different aspects within education which relates to ongoing societal concerns.

Musical Notes- Part 4 (The Piano)

Photo by Carol^-^

The Piano is the 1st instrument that I was introduced to as a child. It is also the 1st instrument that I have introduced to both Ryan & Roy.  This instrument is normally the base instrument that one would learn before branching out to other secondary instruments Ie: Violin, Guitar, Flute.

Let me start off by showing you the skeleton of the piano

Whenever you strike a key on the piano, a felt hammer would have struck briefly at a particular  steel string within the piano. The sound that is produced is a result of the metal string vibrating upon being hit. These vibrations are transmitted through a bridge to a soundboard that amplifies them.

When you play a chord, two or more strings would be vibrating at the same time and the blended sound would be resonating from it.

If you look at the bottom of the piano you would see 3 pedal in the centre.

The pedal which you would use the most often would be the extreme right – Sustain pedal. It lifts the dampers from all keys, sustaining all played notes, and altering the overall tone.The leftmost pedal is the soft pedal. By stepping on this pedal, the hammers  moves closer to the strings, allowing the hammers to hit the strings with less force and produce a softer sound.The  middle pedal called the  celeste pedal.

This drops a piece of felt between the hammers and strings, greatly muting the sounds.However the middle pedal is seldom used unless you intend to play into the wee hours of the night and do not want to disturb the neighbours.For me getting my boys to learn the Piano at this stage is for them to enjoy music, develop their sense of co-ordination, ability to listen subjectively.  It also helps in their right-brain training as it aids in them seeing the bigger picture between each and every piece that they play.A few months ago I posted on which piano method Ryan was using. 

He is still playing songs from the Suzuki Piano Method Vol 1 and is halfway through that book.  He is now able to co-ordinate both his right and left hands while playing syncopated tunes.Have you started your kids on learning a musical instrument?Tune in to the last part of the 5 part series on Musical Notes tomorrow.If you have missed any of the earlier parts of the series here they are:

Post in this series

– Musical Notes  101 (Part 1)

– Musical Notes 101 (Part 2)

Musical Notes 101 (Part 3) The violin

Musical Notes 101 (Part 4) The Piano

-Musical Notes 101( Part 5 Care for your Instrument

Making Reading Interesting

Nowadays many parents are very anxious to see their children be effective readers even before they enter elementary school. They are afraid that their child lose out to others and fall behind in the fast changing pace of education.

To give your child the edge one should start through cultivating the interest in reading in the child while they are young.

Here are tips on how you can make reading more interesting

Tip # 1 Read anything and do it often.

Reading could be done anytime/anywhere throughout the day and not only confined to bedtime stories before they sleep. You can read out snippets from the magazine/newspapers that you subscribe as a change from the usual storybooks. This can help stir their interest in the daily happenings and increase their knowledge in current issues. It also helps you build up a close bond with your child as you are sharing with him/her what is close to your heart.

Tip #2 Do not just read the book from cover to back

Bring the story/article to life. Discuss with you child what the story is talking about. Get him/her to interact with the story by asking inferential questions. Use hand actions to place focus to certain items on the page which you would like to emphasize. You can also add in songs and dance to make the story move lively.

Tip #3 Make reading fun.

Make it a positive and happy activity. Never force your child to sit and read a book if he/she is unwilling. By doing so it will only instill negative thoughts towards the activity and make them shut themselves off from being receptive to the pleasures of knowledge building through reading. If you yourself show that you enjoy reading, your child will slowly develop the same desire and interest too as they love to model and emulate what us, adults, do.