Questions about We Hear and Play

General topics and issues.
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Bass Geek
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Questions about We Hear and Play

Post by Bass Geek » Wed Dec 07, 2005 9:58 am

Hi, I'm considering using this method with my piano students, but I have a few questions:

1) What is the latest age recommended for beginning We Hear and Play? (I have many 4-5 year olds right now)

2) Should We Hear and Play be taught in private lessons, or group lessons?

3) Is one lesson a week enough? And how long should a lesson for a 3 or 3 1/2 year old be?

4) How often should a child practice/play with parents during the week in order for the program to be effective?

5) Do the Taneda's have a website or other published material about their experiences (even if it's in German or Japanese)?

6) Are there any recommendations for training older children (5-12)?

Thanks!

aruffo
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Post by aruffo » Wed Dec 07, 2005 3:39 pm

The quick answers:
1. The oldest recommended age is 5.
2. It is designed for a single child.
3. The weekly lesson (usually 1/2 hour for a 3-year-old) is mainly for the teacher to discover the child's current progress and to show the parents what to do in the coming week.
4. Ideally, every day.
5. You're reading it..!
6. (see below).

The longer explanations:
1. We Hear and Play teaches music as a written language. It is widely documented that there is an apparent developmental shift in a child's neurology at approximately age 5, after which they do not absorb languages as readily. We Hear and Play can be successful with older children, but after age 5 it may be neurologically "too late".

2. The training is designed for a single child because every child develops and learns at different rates. Although I suppose it's possible to adapt the work into group activity (because they are games, after all) I'm not sure that this would be necessary unless the instructor is being impelled to work with a group instead of with individuals, and even then, each child would have to work individually anyway.

3/4. This is learning a written language. If you think about how much time and effort goes into learning the A-B-C's you'll have a sense of what this system ideally requires. That is, the parents will be doing most of the "teaching", with the instructor primarily providing guidance and assistance. A parent should expect to spend at least half an hour every day with their child (if not more, depending on the child's tolerance). [The Education for Absolute Pitch handbook discusses this topic further.]

5. Aside from a few articles published in German newspapers in the 80's, no. The system was developed between 1972-1993 when, of course, there was no Internet, and the published material of their work is the system itself. Since then, although the system has been available through the Ettlingen school in Germany (which was its incubator), the impression I've received from the [translated] news reports I've read and seen is that the lay public simply doesn't recognize the significance of the work. I'm hoping to change that through my efforts... because the Tanedas are also fairly modest, and I am not.

6. I'm confident that the Fletcher material is going to prove the logical and practical extension of We Hear and Play. It's the only method I know of which teaches advanced concepts to groups of children (aged 5-12) via games and puzzles and presumes absolute pitch as a necessary foundation of musical comprehension. I fully expect that once I've established We Hear and Play I will turn a good portion of my attention to resurrecting the Fletcher method.

Bass Geek
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Joined: Fri Nov 18, 2005 11:07 pm
Location: NYC

Post by Bass Geek » Thu Dec 08, 2005 10:23 pm

Thanks, Chris!

You can expect an order from me very soon. I think I will give the parents of my young students the option of switching to We Hear and Play after the holidays. And I will let folks know that there is a program for younger ones out there. Quite a few times I've been asked how young one can start (usually by a parent who has a three-year-old asking for lessons because an older sibling plays) ... and up to now, the method I've been using has rarely been effective for those under four. I am very excited to try this method!

One more question:

From what little I've read about the Fletcher method, it is a group method only. Is this correct? If so, do you think it is a method that could be readily adapted for private lessons? (My students are all private, and I go to them. I don't have a facility in which to provide group lessons, nor do I think many of my students would be interested in switching to group lessons)

Thanks again,
-Heather

Bass Geek
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Joined: Fri Nov 18, 2005 11:07 pm
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Ordering

Post by Bass Geek » Thu Dec 08, 2005 10:36 pm

Hi again, Chris ...

I was just trying to place an order, and there seems to be something going wrong ... whenever I try to "add" the extra stickers to the cart, it links me to my paypal login page, and I can't get back to the cart.

Bass Geek
Posts: 10
Joined: Fri Nov 18, 2005 11:07 pm
Location: NYC

Post by Bass Geek » Thu Dec 08, 2005 10:43 pm

Actually, it does this same thing if I try to "add" any of the individual books or sets of colored balls, too.

aruffo
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Joined: Tue Dec 14, 2004 12:09 pm
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Post by aruffo » Fri Dec 09, 2005 5:59 am

Dear me! Not again! I've encountered that Paypal problem before, but I thought I'd fixed it. I'll take another crack at it right now and report back here when I've managed it.

From my reading of it, I would think the Fletcher method could be adapted for private lessons, yes. She uses a game-oriented method (as does We Hear and Play) so that a teacher, understanding the principles driving each game, could invent similar games involving single students. That is-- although the games are group games, none of them (to my recollection) require cooperation between the children for their completion, so it seems probable that the games can be pared down to have one-on-one rules.

aruffo
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Post by aruffo » Fri Dec 09, 2005 6:18 am

Okay, the Paypal shopping-cart links should be fixed now. I apologize for the inconvenience!

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