Piano is one of the most popular instruments among kids, but it’s also one of the most common first instruments for children.
However, the process of finding instructors and piano lessons for kids can be difficult.
Where to Find In-Person Piano Lessons
There are a number of places that can help find local piano lessons, however they can be difficult resources to find at times. Knowing where to find these listings is a great first step in simplifying the search process.
Listed below are a few starter ideas.
Music Teacher National Association (MTNA)
If you live in the United States, the MTNA is a great starting place to find a piano teacher for your child. It lists all of the certified piano teachers in the country. Along with the list it also has some great resources for parents to streamline the search process and interview prospective teachers.
The MTNA list will ensure that your child finds a teacher that is knowledgeable and capable of teaching according to the national piano standards. Most likely they will also encourage the student to engage in piano competitions and build their skills following the loose guide of MTNA curriculum. They are a great option for students of all skill levels and backgrounds.
Ask for Recommendations
One of the best ways to find a reliable and local teacher is to ask for local recommendations. Piano is quite a popular instrument meaning you most likely know someone who’s child is also taking it on. Getting a recommendation from someone you trust is one of the best ways to vet a new piano teacher and ensure they are going to be a great fit for your child.
If you find that there is no one you know that currently has an association with a piano teacher, then asking your child’s school music teacher is another great resource. They are integrated into the music community and may be able to recommend teachers that will not pop up with a simple google search. Additionally, it may be possible that they themselves are willing to offer lessons to your child. While this is rare, it never hurts to ask.
Local Music Stores
Another great and easy way to find piano lessons nearby is to ask the local music stores if they offer lessons. Many times, there are practice studios as well as teachers that are hired through the store to offer lessons to kids.
While these teachers are not private individuals, lessons are often still one-on-one and can offer great individual practice suggestions. The teachers are capable of growing with the student as they advance their skills.
Occasionally music stores will also offer group music lessons. This is not only an amazing social opportunity for your child to find friends with a common interest, but also can help boost confidence. The group atmosphere creates a supportive community as each child grows and is cheered on by the others. It can also create a somewhat healthy competitive environment as each child gets better and better.
Using Websites to Find Teachers
If none of the above options are proving fruitful, the outlet of a simple online search may find some websites listing nearby teachers. These are not necessarily a bad option as long as you are careful about choosing the right one and ensuring they are what you are looking for in a teacher.
Many of these websites may also be helpful as they truly do narrow the search to nearby teachers. For example, Lessons.com allows you to input your zip code to find nearby teachers. Additionally, they begin with a survey to be able to match you with the best teacher for your child. Teachers on websites like this are most likely self-promoting and therefore range between all levels and styles of teaching.
Another option is Bark.com, another website list that helps find the piano teachers near you. Bark also is meant to help match kids with the piano teacher that aligns best with what they are looking for in their piano journey.
These websites in general are a great beginning resource for those looking for private piano lessons. Teachers who teach individually are a great choice as they tend to be able to have more flexible hours as well as a more individualistic approach. Kids will get the attention and customizable lessons that they need.
What To Look For in a Piano Teacher
There are a number of things to ask about when deciding which piano teacher to engage with. Price, curriculum, and teaching style are all important things to consider. That being said, they are difficult to understand and know what is “fair” in the music industry if this is your first time looking. Let’s discuss each of these.
The price of a piano lesson really depends on the type of lesson, the length and the experience of the teacher. Typically, lessons should last between 30 minutes for beginners to an hour for advanced students. Price also fluctuates depending on if the teacher is private or through a group.
For relatively newer teachers and those that are not private, anywhere from $15 to $40 is an adequate price. However, private teachers are able to set their own rates and depending on their expertise it can be all the way up to $150. Anything over that, it should be carefully considered why the price is so high and what that teacher can offer compared to anyone else.
It is important that teachers are able to learn and grow with the child in their piano journey. It would be beneficial to ask the teacher what their curriculum is before signing on. This is especially important for beginners as they need to develop their skills rather than simply play more advanced songs.
The curriculum should be fairly standard. As a parent, you know your child best and you may want to ensure that the planned curriculum is not too fast or too slow for the learning style of your child. Moreso, you may want to ask the teacher how flexible the curriculum is to be able to adjust and cater to your child.
As mentioned when discussing the curriculum, an important aspect of piano lessons is the teaching style of the instructor. Flexibility and accountability are two great things to consider when deciding on a teacher and what your child needs to learn.
The other aspect (regarding teaching style) is in how lessons are conducted. Are they more hands on for the student (which is believed to be most beneficial for learning)? Or is it more theory based and ear training? What are the teacher’s goals when teaching a child? How collaborative is the curriculum in setting the steps to achieve the child’s goals? These are all questions that you may want to consider asking a prospective teacher.
For more, check out my article entitled: Teaching Piano to Beginners in 5 Easy Steps
Best Online Piano Lessons for Kids
For those parents that in-person piano lessons are not right, the best result from the google search of “piano classes for kids near me” may be an online option. There are a number of online piano lesson options, however the problem persists of where and how to find the best options that fit your child’s learning and piano needs.
In our opinion, there are a few options that may outrank some others.
Free vs. Paid Online Lesson
Before we dive into the specific online lesson options, it’s important to discuss the difference between free and paid online lessons. Unlike in-person options, most of which require payment, the internet can give access to some free lessons first.
Most free online piano lessons are either solely meant for beginning students and don’t go much farther than playing basic songs. However, these can be a great resource for developing the fundamentals before investing in a paid lesson option.
Also, many of the paid online lesson options offer free trials before requiring payment so students can find if they like the lesson style or not. These free trials once again do not go far enough to help students advance past the basic beginner stage, however they are great to develop fundamentals and start the piano journey.
The last aspect of free vs. paid online options is if the price is worth it. While it is our opinion that nothing can replace an in-person student teacher interaction and curriculum flexibility, the paid online options can still be a great resource. Most of them are priced fairly for what they give the student and can actively engage in student advancement at their own pace.
The next few options all have the option to pay for a premium subscription or likewise. After we discuss these we will also contribute a few free options for piano lessons as well.
Piano for All is an easy to use, fun online course. It consists of 9 interactive eBooks, where you’ll get to learn and play everything from Blues and Rock n’ Roll to Jazz and Pop.
Designed to help those whose skill level ranges from beginner to intermediate, Piano for All uses its 200 videos to help learn chords through helpful memory tricks, instilling in you the confidence to change chords at speed using Inversions.
The interactive books work on pretty much any device you can think of—from PC to Mac to tablets and certainly smartphones.
And while Piano for All isn’t a course designed for specifically for kids, I think it would be a really great option to consider for any gifted teenager you know.
Hoffman Academy is arguably one of the best online options for learning piano, and this is for multiple reason. Like many paid online options there are free resources, and even more items with a paid premium subscription.
Hoffman Academy is one of the most in-person-like online options. While there is no interaction between student and teacher, each lesson is taught by Mr. Hoffman through a video. This allows for visual and auditory learning to occur as well as attention engagement with a person rather than a computer.
The website of Hoffman Academy is easy to navigate, and the student can progress through the units at their own pace. The best part is that each unit is small when it comes to learning the fundamentals so as not to overwhelm the student. It’s combination of piano games, progress tracking, and forming individualized practice plans gives Hoffman Academy almost every aspect that an in-person teacher would give to a student.
Playground Sessions is built for students of any and all levels of piano. The best part about their modules is the simple diversifying that occurs within their system. They have packages meant for rookies as well as advanced players, but also some that specifically focus on different aspects of piano playing. These modules include focusing on things such as rhythm, notation, and playing by ear.
Playground is great for kids because it uses popular songs that many students already know to teach music theory and playing. It draws on students’ previous knowledge to demonstrate how much music they already know just by listening to their everyday music choices. Combining this teaching method with their hundreds of offered lessons and hours of video tutorials, Playground Sessions is one of the best paid online piano options out on the web.
You also might like: Playground Sessions review
Perfect Praise Music may come up with a simple google search, however they make it on our list of recommended options for a number of reasons. They offer in-studio lessons as well as their accessible online piano lessons. They are one of the most accessible and resource heavy online piano options offering include private synchronous lessons with one-on-one learning, as well as asynchronous lessons where students can learn at their own pace. Instead of organizing lesson plans by skill level, they are organized by age from baby and toddler to 5+ years and adults.
The second reason Perfect Praise Music is our recommendation is because of their special needs home music lessons. Especially for parents with kids that may be neurodivergent, finding a lesson option that is not necessarily private and yet fits the needs of their child can be difficult.
Perfect Praise offers a four-step process and daily activities for students to engage with. They customize their program for a child’s specific needs and abilities to be able to engage with the children more. Perfect Praise Music allows kids of all abilities and ages to progress through their music education and achieve the goals.
Obviously there are many more options of paid online lessons, but these are just a few we recommend and ideas to get the search started. It’s important to find the one that works best for you and your student’s learning capabilities.
Free Piano Lessons for Kids
If paying for online piano lessons is either not an investment you are ready to make, or simply not in the budget there are also a number of free online piano courses as well.
While these may not be as intricate or detailed as the paid options, they can still provide a great foundation and start to a student’s piano journey.
Zebra Keys is a free interface that offers lessons and technique building practices for mostly beginning piano students. It has over 50 piano lessons, each divided into five sections of learning songs, chords, theory, improvisation and technique. In order to develop their own sense of musical style and create a passion for piano, students are heavily encouraged to learn techniques such as improvisation and theory. They even offer blank staff sheets to let students try out their hand at composing their own piano pieces.
The lessons on Zebra Keys are written in text which can struggle to keep the attention of younger students. However, they are laid out in simple terms and include animation to make the learning easier. This site is especially great for students who are wanting to learn more of the theory and music fundamentals of playing piano, rather than the actual playing techniques.
The last option we will recommend here is Piano Nanny. Piano Nanny contains 32 lessons on their website starting with finding middle ‘C’ on the keyboard and eventually becoming more advanced with Jazz integration. This website allows and encourages students to work at their own pace to really understand the material of one lessons before moving on to the next.
Similar to Zebra Keys, Piano Nanny is a completely written lesson plan without videos to keep kids’ attention, however their lessons are complete and thorough taking 10 lessons before even teaching students a major scale.
Piano Nanny is one of the most comprehensive free online piano studies. Their lessons truly range from beginner to advanced which is not found in many other free options. It’s worth checking out and potentially starting the piano journey before deciding if you wish to invest more time and finance into the instrument.
Once again, these are just some of the options on the internet that offer free piano lessons to kids. Even though there are less free options compared to paid, this is not an exhaustive list and it’s important to take the time and really find the option that is best suited for your child’s learning abilities. Another option can include YouTube videos that often link to more comprehensive websites.
If you’re still interested in learning how to play piano or keyboard, get your copy of Piano for All today, which features 10 eBooks, 200 video piano lessons and 500 audio piano lessons!
There are so many options of piano lessons on the internet and in-person locally. The search to find the best one for you and your student can be difficult and overwhelming. However, it’s important to remember that in the search to find piano classes near me, there are tons of great resources to help you accomplish this task.
Take your time and ensure that whichever option or teacher you choose is exactly what you are looking for, hopefully the relationship between piano teacher and child will be a long one.
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