ThePiano Student is a music resource directory for teachers and beginning-intermediate level piano students. Below are a few of the most popular posts and the most active posts. I hope you enjoy the resources you find. If you are having trouble finding a particular resource, please let me know.
The Little Mermaid is one of Disney’s best animated features and the music is loved by kids around the world. “Part of Your World” from the film is one of the most popular songs from that movie.
The following piano sheet music arrangements are perfect for first year and advancing piano students that have taken at least two years of lessons. If you want to check out these piano arrangements out in more detail, click the links above the thumbnails to print the first page or click the play button to listen to a digital performance.
The Little Mermaid, released in 1989, is animated feature film that was produced by the Walt Disney Animation Studios. It is Disney’s 28th animated feature film and is based Hans Christian Andersen short story of the same name. The Little Mermaid tells the story of Ariel, a mermaid who wants to become human. While swimming in the sea she sees and falls in love with prince Eric. To be with Eric, she makes a deal with Ursula, the sea witch, to become human. The Little Mermaid was released to critical acclaim and earned praise for the 2D animation, the music, and the characters.
About The Little Mermaid Music Score
Alan Menken, American composer, conductor and pianist, composed the music for The Little Mermaid. It was one of his first scores for the Walt Disney Animation Studios. Menken wrote Broadway-style music for the film, bringing a whole new sound to cartoons. One of the film’s most successful songs, “Part of Your World,” was almost cut from the movie when it tested poorly with kids, who were unfocused during the scene. Glen Keane, Ariel’s animator for the film, encouraged Disney to leave the song in until the film was more complete. The second test was a hit with children and song remained in the film.
Check out this entertaining popsicle stick theater production from the MakingMusicFun.net academy. It is one of a collection of composer video biographies. This lesson features Italian Baroque composer Antonio Lucio Vivaldi. This is a great foundation for your next composer unit.
Begin by watching the Antonio Vivaldi composer video lesson with your students. Explore the supporting resources, including the FREE printable study guide. Your students will have fun completing the FREE Meet Vivaldi word search and “Meet the Composer” Job Application worksheet.
Watch the Meet Vivaldi Video | Baroque Composer Biography for Kids
Print the FREE Meet Antonio Vivaldi Study Guide
Visit the link below to print the FREE Meet Vivaldi study guide.
Check out the FREE Meet Vivaldi word search worksheet. Tell your kids or students how many words there are to search for and then let them go to work finding the keywords from the Meet Antonio Vivaldi composer biography.
Some scholars think that Vivaldi’s Four Seasons was inspired by sonnets that he wrote himself. Armand D’Angour, a British scholar and musician, translated the sonnets in 2017.
Springtime has now arrived, and full of cheer The birds greet her return with festive song, And streams caressed by breaths of western breezes With gentle murmuration flow along. Casting a dark mantle over heaven, Come thunder, lightning, harbingers of spring: They die away to silence, and the songbirds Take up their tuneful strain once more and sing. Now in the lovely meadow, filled with flowers, Under the branches rustling overhead The goat-herd sleeps, his faithful dog beside him. Led by the festive sound of rustic bagpipes, The nymphs and shepherds lightly dance and sing Beneath the brilliant canopy of spring.
In icy snow we tremble from the cold, Caught by the bristling wind with its harsh breath; We run and stamp our feet at every moment, With teeth a-chatter, cold as very death; Or by the fire we sit content and happy While outside pours down a torrential squall, And tread across the ice with careful footsteps, Cautious from fear that we might trip and fall; We turn abruptly, slip, and crash down earthwards, Then rising, hasten on across the ice In case the surface cracks and breaks apart. Through bolted doors we hear the winds competing, Sirocco, North Wind, all the winds at war: It’s winter, but it brings us joy for sure.
To read the entire translation of Vivaldi’s Four Sonnets, visit the site of Armand D’Angour.
Play the Piano Sheet Music from the Meet Vivaldi Composer Biography Video Lesson
The Meet Vivaldi video features sheet music from MakingMusicFun.net. Visit the links below to print the piano sheet music:
Pirates of the Caribbean movies offer several scores that kids enjoy practicing more than almost anything else. “He’s A Pirate” is one of most loved pieces, and these arrangements are sure to be winners with your kids. The first piano arrangement is considered very easy, and is scored in a way that gives kids a full sounding piece, while making it easy to learn and play. They second arrangement switches the time signature from 3/4 to 6/8 (the original time signature), but keeps almost everything else the same. If your kids are in Jr. High, and they haven’t practiced compound meter songs much – or at all, this arrangement would be a great place to start.
Want to check out what the He’s A Pirate – Very Easy Piano Sheet Music sounds like before you buy it? The following video gives you a full performance. Make sure to bookmark this post so you can head back to it for help with the rhythms and fingerings.
About “Pirates of the Caribbean” (He’s a Pirate)
Pirates of the Caribbean started as a ride at Disneyland which opened in 1967. It was as one of the last rides that was overseen by Walt Disney himself. Since then Pirates of the Caribbean has become a series of movies, spin-off novels, video games, and more. The first movie to be released was The Curse of the Black Pearl in 2003. The movies had grossed $4.5 billion worldwide by 2019, and placed the movie franchise on the list of highest-grossing franchises of all-time.
Looking for a new piece of sheet music to share with your piano students or play yourself?
“Christmas Time Is Here” is a Christmas standard written by Lee Mendelson and Vince Guaraldi for the television special A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965). It is based on the comic strip Peanuts, by Charles M. Schulz. The special was one of the first animated Christmas specials created for network TV in the USA. There are two versions on the soundtrack album, including an instrumental version by Guaraldi and a choral version by the members of the St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in San Rafael, California.
Print Easy Piano Sheet Music
This piano sheet music arrangement is ideal for the advancing pianist, with parts written specifically to make the arrangement highly playable. Visit MusicNotes to listen to the arrangement, and print the score. The digital recording on the site may also be useful to you in learn to play the sheet music.
I’ve seen many amazing performances over my years of adjudicating music competitions. For this post I thought I’d share outline the things I consider when adjudicating a students performance. Hopefully this will be helpful to you for your next competition or just to play better at your next concert or recital.
Tips for Students
1) Select Music – Choose a piece that is right for you. The student that plays the fastest music or the music with the most notes isn’t always the one who gets the trophy. The perfect piece is the one you can play musically and with confidence.
2) Daily Practice – Jamming all of your practice into the last few days before your performance can deliver good results – just not the best. You stand a far better chance of giving a perfect performance, if you practice consistently for several weeks or months before your performance. It will give your fingers and brain plenty of time to build muscle memory.
3) Practice Very, Very Slowly – Most kids never discover their full potential – whatever age they are – because they don’t practice slowly. When I say “slowly,” I mean very, very slow. Practicing at a very slow tempo allows you to discover and work out flaws in your performance that might not be heard at a faster tempo.
I LOVE seeing the smiles that come over student’s faces when their potential is realized. All it requires is trading a few minutes of very slow practice.
4) Record Practice Performances – When you think your piece is fully prepared, record your performance and watch it. You’ll probably discover a few things you could improve on.
Here’s a checklist of things to consider in the order of importance.
a) Steady Beat – Are you playing with a steady beat? Every trophy winner that I’ve ever chosen has played with a steady beat – even if they missed notes. Every other musical element should get inline behind steady beat.
b) Dynamics – Some pieces don’t have many dynamics. If they do have dynamics, or your teacher feels dynamics should be added to make your piece more interesting, do your best to play them. It will make your performance stand out from the competition.
c) Note and Rhythms – Playing the right notes and rhythms is important. It’s where you start. Work every note and rhythm out very slowly, practicing with a steady beat. When you can get from the beginning to the end of your piece with few mistakes you’ll be ready to add dynamics.
It’s the attention the everything on this list separates an average musician from a superstar!
This one of several popsicle stick theater productions that MakingMusicFun.net has been creating to enhance their great composer biographies and music academy lessons. This video features Scott Joplin, an American ragtime composer and pianist. It’s a fun resource to share with your kids as a music appreciation lesson or to include in a music classroom lesson.
Begin with the Meet Scott Joplin video. Next, check out the supporting resources provided below, including a FREE Scott Joplin composer study guide, Scott Joplin coloring page, Scott Joplin word search worksheet, and piano sheet music arrangements of his most popular rags.
Learn About Scott Joplin | Ragtime Composer
Get the Meet Scott Joplin Study Guidefor FREE
Get more out of this MakingMusicFun.net Music Academy lesson with this free study guide. Click the link below to print this worksheet.
“Mary Had a Little Lamb” is a great first song to learn on the piano, and this lesson will get your kids playing in minutes. Find a tablet or laptop to set up behind the piano keyboard, or put the tablet or laptop on top of the piano. Taking the first piano lesson with your kids, will help them understand what they need to do. Pause the piano lesson after every phrase to drill what was taught. Get it right and then play each phrase correctly a few more times. After the piano lesson, print the FREE beginner piano sheet music from MakingMusicFun.net. It’s a good idea to repeat the lesson daily to remind your kids what they need to do, as kids often forget what the rhythms sound like and don’t practice effectively. Twenty minutes a day is the perfect amount of piano practice time, including time with the video lesson. It won’t ever overwhelm your kids, and they’ll make excellent progress as long as they’re getting to the piano each and every day.
Mary Had a Little Lamb – FREE Beginner Piano Lesson
Print Beginner Piano Sheet Music
Print the FREE beginner piano sheet music for “Mary Had A Little Lamb” at MakingMusicFun.net. Your kids will need it to to practice after the lesson.
Want to teach your kids about one of the greatest composers of all-time?
Johann Sebastian Bach certainly qualifies as one of the greats, and with some of his being compositions being over 300 years old his works are still just a popular.
This post includes FREE music lesson resources to share German composer, Johann Sebastian Bach, with your kids or in the general music classroom. Start by watching the Meet Bach popsicle stick theater lesson video that covers all the highlights, and follow by diving into the worksheets. If you kids are piano students, I’ve also included links to beginner and easy piano sheet music below.
Print the FREE Meet Bach Study Guide to get more out of this MakingMusicFun.net Music Academy video lesson. Click the following link to print this worksheet.
Hey Kids, Meet Johann Sebastian Bach Composer Biography
Johann Sebastian Bach was born in Eisenach, Germany in 1685. As a child, Bach’s father taught him to play violin and harpsichord. His uncles were all musicians, serving as church organists and court chamber musicians. One of his uncles, Johann Christoph Bach, introduced him to the art of organ playing. In 1707, Bach married his second cousin Maria Barbara Bach. They had seven children. In 1720 Maria died, and Bach married Anna Magdalena Wilcke in 1721. Bach had 13 more children with Anna Magdalena. He was a father to 20 children in all. Read more on MakingMusicFun.net.
More Free Johann Sebastian Bach Worksheets
Have fun completing the following free worksheets. Put on a recording while your kids color. It’s a great way to keep them focused.
Amazing Grace is one of the most known songs in the whole world. The lyrics for “Amazing Grace” were written by English poet, John Newton. His words are based on a prayer by the Bible’s, King David, where he marvels at God’s decision to choose him and his house. The Christian hymn was popularized in the 1960’s during a folk music revival. Since then it has been recorded by many people, including top recording artists Elvis Presley, Rod Stewart, Aretha Franklin, and Willie Nelson.
Want to learn one of the most popular Christian hymns ever written?
This post shares a free online beginner piano lesson for kids from the MakingMusicFun.net Music Academy. There’s also FREE piano sheet music that you can download and print to practice after the lesson. Dy-na-mite!
Getting the most out of this beginner piano lesson will require you to pause the video every few seconds to practice what was taught. Without doing this your kids will miss out on the greatest strength of video piano lessons. It’s the instant do-over! The repetition helps you remember what was said, and practice it until you get it right. The great musicians you know practiced in the same way, drilling what was taught. However, most of them didn’t have video lessons to repeat the important stuff over and over again. You do. If you’re ready to be a great musician yourself, and do it in record time, this lesson can help.
2. Count As You Play
The MakingMusicFun.net Music Academy developed a counting system that consistently helps kids play rhythms correctly. Some kids resist counting out loud, and they miss out on the benefits. Parent that take the time to reinforce this practice routine will soon see the rewards.
3. Practice Very, Very Slowly
It would be great if we could play the music perfectly every time we sat down to play it. However, it’s just not possible. That very real desire is probably the reason why kids struggle to slow things down while practicing.
Practicing slowly teaches your fingers what you would like them to do. When the music is learned perfectly your child’s muscle memory in their fingers will take over, and they’ll be able to perform in ways you never thought possible. I’ve seen it happen many times. It just requires the patience to practice very very slowly.
Want to introduce your children to the musical instruments of the orchestra?
This lesson follows a young boy named, George, who chats with players of the Sydney Youth Orchestra. They teach him about the four families of the orchestra, including the strings, woodwinds, brass, and percussion. It’s so adorable and and easy lesson to understand.
This music lesson is perfect for kids ages 3-9. For at home learning or something to share in the general music classroom.