We know all about why learning to play a musical instrument is great for our children’s development.
- Brain Scans Show How Learning a Musical Instrument Enhances Our Brains
- Why You Should Send Your Child for Music Lessons
- Extra-Curricular Activities: The Wondrous Benefits of Learning a Musical Instrument
So naturally, we’re always on the lookout for anything that will nudge the boys along on this path…
Well, here’s one cool app that we come across that is terrific for budding piano players. I can’t take the credit for discovering it because it was G1’s piano teacher who introduced it to him so he could continue practicing his piano over the holidays, but I was tinkering around with it to see what it offered and I love it!
About Piano Maestro
Piano Maestro is an in depth educational tool for students beginning to study piano. The app helps students practice and learn their sight reading, rhythm, technique, playing with both hands and more. It is also FREE for registered teachers and their students.
The concept was conceived when Yuval, Co-Founder & CEO of JoyTunes, was visiting his nephew one day. Tom was much more interested in playing his Wii, and showing off the skills he mastered, than playing his piano. Tom’s mother could not rip him away from his game console for 10 minutes to practice his piano, with a huge argument ensuing. This is where the light bulb went off in Yuval’s head. Why not combine the aspects of video games with music?
- Progress up in chapters, unlock new songs and raise their difficulty level along the way. Learn to play songs step by step:
- from single note to complete pieces
- learn to read sheet music notation and symbols
- play melodies in both treble and bass clefs
- choose between right hand, left hand or both hands simultaneously
- Have access to practice options, and be able to personalize your learning experience.
- Learn songs from some of the most well known and beloved piano method books used today. Piano Maestro is a digital way for piano teachers to compliment the use of their favorite method book. All books can be found in the Library in the ‘Methods’ section.
- Teachers can receive weekly progress reports to track progress in between lessons; assign Home Challenges, to have students practice songs and exercises as homework with Piano Maestro.
- The immediate appeal of Piano Maestro is that students can look ahead to upcoming tunes which can be unlocked once current songs are “passed”. JoyTunes has collected and continues to add current hits to the library. The lure of these student favorites and the carefully sequenced selection of exercises provides the perfect “carrot” to keep gamers playing and improving their skills.
The Piano Maestro app is divided into three segments – journey, library and home challenge.
In journey, students can progress through lessons and practice exercises. Each chapter contains a lesson/tutorial and practice exercises in the form of games that must be completed in order to move on to the next chapter. Begin by listening to the tutorial…
…then practice new skills and new knowledge by playing games:
Hit the right notes at the right time to get through the challenge. Background music accompanies the player so students can play like professionals.
At the end of the game, students will get a final score out of three stars based on the accurately of their note playing and rhythm. Master each chapter to open the next, all while improving sight reading, rhythm, technique, playing two hands and much more. Progress up in chapters, collecting SKILL POINTS along the way.
Games and challenges can be played on any piano (acoustic or electronic) with the iPad microphone enabled, or by using the iPad touchscreen keyboard:
Parents and teachers can keep track of all their children/students on the teachers and parents zone.
Piano Maestro’s library contains songs, exercises and various methods for learning piano. Containing over 2000 songs, organised by category and levels, students can play anything from beginner classics to popular hits, with JoyTunes adding new songs every week!
Play beginners’ classics like:
- Vivaldi’s Spring
- Aida Theme
- When The Saints Go Marching In
And Popular hits like:
- Just the way you are (Bruno Mars)
- Love Story (Taylor Swift)
- Roar (Katy Perry)
Students can also practice their skills, new keys and playing with one or two hands:
- major and minor scales
- sight reading
- right hand, left hand, or both hands
These are some of the different methods for learning available on Piano Maestro at the time of writing:
- Alfred’s Premier Piano Course
- Music for Little Mozarts
- Doggonelt! and KittenKaBoodle by Tom Gerou
- Method Match: Library Songs Organised by Piano Adventures Units
- Piano Pronto by Jennifer Eklund
- Supersonics Piano by Daniel McFarlane
- Alfred’s Group Piano for Adults
- Tales of a Musical Journey – Irina Gorin
- MIDI for Kids
- Amen! Hymns and Spirituals by Bradley Sowash
The home challenge allows teachers and students to connect – teachers can monitor students’ home progress and assign challenges to keep students motivated and practicing in between lessons.
Piano Maestro Webinars
Extend your Piano Maestro experience with webinars from JoyTunes:
Piano Maestro is created by JoyTunes, winner of:
- “World Summit Award” from the United Nations
- “EMI’s Innovation Challenge 2013”
- “Best Tools for Beginners”, NAMM
- “Best Tablet Game of 2013”, GameIS
- “App of the Week”, Gizmodo
- “Parent’s Choice Award”
- “Golden App”, Apps for Homeschooling
Piano Maestro Availability
- All app users can play several free skill levels and upgrade to a subscription package at any time.
- Subscribers will receive full access to the Piano Maestro journey – a great complimentary tool to your piano lessons.
- The Piano Maestro journey includes the ability to progress in levels, earn ranks and full access to a constantly updating song library with new songs added weekly.
- Monthly recurring subscription for $11.99/month
- Half-yearly (6 months) recurring subscription for $47.99/6 months
- Recurring yearly subscription for $59.99/year
Piano Dust Buster
Subscribers to Piano Maestro will also have free access to the Piano Dust Buster app where students have the option to begin practicing reading notation, compete against other players or challenge themselves to 100’s of songs ranging from Beethoven to Adele. By getting students to help granny dust off her piano while collecting points and bonuses, Piano Dust Buster gets students excited about playing and practicing their piano.
JoyTunes is a team of internationally renowned musicians, rock star gamers, educators and child psychologists who are passionate about all things music. Dedicated to creating extraordinary music apps that will motivate practice, engage students in playing and ultimately improve performance, they have made it their mission to enable anyone to learn and play an instrument of their choice. JoyTunes was established in 2011 by CEO and Co-Founder Yuval Kaminka along with CTO Roey Izkovsky and Musical Director Yigal Kaminka. JoyTunes apps have been downloaded by more than 5 million users and 1 million songs are played each week. JoyTunes award-winning app, Piano Maestro, was ranked #1 education app in over 20 countries.