Teaching chord piano is a great addition to your teaching curriculum
As a piano teacher, I created Chord Piano Is Fun to teach my students how to play chord piano and be able to read chord charts or lead sheets. Many of them wanted to learn how to play popular music, but were still too new in their ability to follow many of the popular music books' left hand line along with the melody line. So, after spending hundreds of dollars on other chord methods to try to find one to teach well and for my students to follow, I realized I had to write my own.
A FANTASTIC benefit with teaching chord piano is that you will have a "niche" that other teachers in your area may not. I advertise that I teach chord piano and because of that I can charge more for lessons -- and have a waiting list a mile long!
This is a very easy book to follow and use. Chord Piano Is Fun integrates very nicely with methods such as Alfred, Piano Adventures, etc., and gives a deeper insight into the theory of music. Teachers have found that with use of this the students have a greater understanding of what they are learning and tend to progress at a quicker pace. I use this in addition to and along with my other method books and music pieces for my students.
Because Chord Piano Is Fun is a spiral-bound book, it lays very nicely on the piano and is easy to flip through. It is packed full of resources, such as How to Create All Types of Chords, All of the Family Chords for each Key (Major and Minor), All the Major and Minor Scales, Circle of 4ths/5ths, How to Write a Song, How to Play the Blues, etc. With purchase, you will also be able to sign into the Customer Page to download new additions, such as Christmas Music, etc.
I have found that once the student understands their chords and how they are created, they are able to pick them easily out of their music, thus helping them to learn their pieces easier because they have a "visual" in their mind.
The Songwriting Chart in the book is a great way to get a child starting on writing his/her own song. Once it is written, and with the help of a notation software (I use Capella), it's so exciting to watch a child create their first song, put a name to it, and the copyright on the bottom. They are published! I have each student perform their songs at a recital and with their permission give copies of each student's song to the other students so that they can try them at home.
Please see below or go to my Reviews page for reviews from other teachers and students.
I hope you decide to give Chord Piano Is Fun a try. I know you won't be sorry!
And, please email me if you have any questions!
Here are a few reviews from teachers using Chord Piano Is Fun:
From Natalie Wickham, Music Matters:
Don’t you just love it when someone else does all the hard work and puts together a systematic approach to teaching something that is just the way you would do it? Honestly, it’s pretty rare to find something that’s a perfect fit, but T.K. Goforth has done just that with her book, Chord Piano Is Fun!
The book begins with a fabulous introduction of How to Create a Major Scale, then moves into chords, scale degrees, chord inversions, key signatures, 7th chords, and more! All of this is introduced with the objective of helping pianists learn how to play from a lead sheet (a.k.a. fake book). The layout of the book is very clean, with lots of helpful images, and some of the most concise explanations I’ve read for various theoretical elements in music. This would be perfect for a student who wants to learn chording skills on their own, or for a teacher who is struggling to know how to introduce scales, chords, key signatures, and playing from a lead sheet to his or her students.
I love that the terminology used is accurate, but is broken down in such a way that even beginning students can begin to grasp the concepts. The one exception to this that I’ve discovered is the use of the term, “Family Chords” rather than “Primary Triads.” I could definitely work around this, though, for the value to be gained from the rest of the book. There is even a brief lesson on song-writing in the back that I think would be appealing to a lot of students!
The primary reason that I rarely use theory books with my students is due to a lack of relevance. The written material is divorced from the music that they are playing and it becomes more of a busywork assignment than a real learning tool. A book like Chord Piano Is Fun! is a wonderful approach to learning theory because what is being learned is immediately relevant to music and styles that the student wants to learn to play. I am excited to begin using it in my studio!
From Laura Beasley, LHB Music:
As a seasoned piano/vocal teacher, I have been looking for a book to teach a chording method without having to write it myself! This book is exactly what I have been looking for! Chord Piano Is Fun is a fantastic tool -- a very clearly written, easy-to-understand, and thorough method of piano chording. It can be used to self-teach as well as used as a method book with a teacher. I have added Chord Piano Is Fun as a mandatory supplement for even my youngest students to the traditional method lesson and theory books.
I have found "Chord Piano Is Fun" to be a very helpful tool in the areas of ear training and improvisation as well as a fun way to teach my students how to play popular music. I have further found that some of my students who were not responding quickly (or at all) to the basic method, yet were very bright as well as musically talented, were becoming so discouraged that they wanted to quit taking piano lessons altogether. At that point, in trying to salvage their self-esteem as well as their interest in piano playing, I gave them a copy of Chord Piano Is Fun and basically started over with them. What I found was renewed interest, increased passion, and a super sense of success in each of those students! At my last recital, one of those students accompanied herself with chords while she sang a beautiful song, and the other played a fairly difficult Disney piece (Under the Sea) using only the treble clef and chord symbols along with some improvisation on his part. Both were FABULOUS performances and I accredit both to the fresh start with Chord Piano Is Fun!
I also put two of my students with learning disabilities (particularly in reading) as well as ADD/ADHD students on Chord Piano Is Fun and all are excelling and enjoying playing piano when other teachers gave them no chance of learning how to play the piano! THANK YOU FOR "CHORD PIANO IS FUN!"
From Carolyn, Former Piano Teacher, Camano Island, Washington
"Chord Piano is Fun" is a well-written, easy-to-understand resource for learning to play the piano using chords. The book is so logically organized that it is possible to start at the beginning, with little or no understanding of HOW TO PLAY or HOW TO BUILD CHORDS, and to complete the lessons with the ability to play many songs in various styles! The method is not just for beginners, but also for the seasoned pianist who wants to play with the freedom chords allow in many kinds of music from hymns to pop. It is especially useful for the church musician who wishes to embellish the hymns or praise songs.
As a retired public school music teacher, private piano teacher and church musician, I know how valuable learning chords can be in the areas of theory concepts, ear training and just enjoying playing whatever you wish. I regret that I did not have this book when I was teaching, as I spent many hours creating my own worksheets for chord study. CHORD PIANO IS FUN.......REALLY IS!