The piano has been a revolutionary stringed instrument, allowing the performer to not only play the melody of a piece but also the harmony simultaneously. Interestingly, there are many studies that show the benefits of learning piano at a young age. A study from the Center for the Study of Human Development at Brown University discovered that musical training boosted second graders’ counting and math skills significantly above their peers. Additionally, a recent study from Cardiff University showed that learning piano can strengthen hand muscles and hand-eye coordination, especially in children with reduced motor skills. It is evident that playing the piano is a beneficial skill for children, but many students in various countries do not have the opportunity to do so.
This is where Piano Marvel comes in; Piano Marvel is an all-in-one online platform for anybody interested in learning, practicing, and playing the piano! The successful piano learning platform was created for students of any age to learn at their own pace with the help of professional piano teachers. And for students in Haiti, this is their perfect opportunity to learn a new life-changing skill! Piano Marvel is partnering with ITIAH Angels for Learning (IAFL) to provide 10 students with subscriptions to Piano Marvel. Along with the subscription, the students need keyboards with midi capability and their proper cables to connect to their internet device, both of which could be found at a more affordable price at pawn shops or second-hand stores. Piano Marvel will subsequently connect students with piano teachers that volunteer to teach via Zoom. The children will need a teacher’s aide to monitor the students, assist them with technology, and track their progress in learning.
The platform was the brainchild of Aaron Garner, a professional piano teacher who dreamed of a way to teach a myriad of piano students simultaneously at each of their respective skill levels. After having it developed, he and his wife Heidi debuted Piano Marvel at the Music Teachers National Association Convention in 2009. The software has since evolved into a huge platform that is used by schools and universities across the country. With over 25,000 pieces and exercises on the platform, Piano Marvel engages students with variety in their learning and lots of fun! Piano Marvel, through partnering with IAFL, hopes to provide the opportunity of learning to play the piano to students in Haiti. “We want them and everyone in the world who wants to learn to play the piano to have that opportunity,” owner Heidi says. “Piano Marvel is only possible because of the advancement of technology and the love and passion that we at Piano Marvel have to provide the best virtual learning experience combined with traditional and modern methods of teaching.”
“This is a wonderful opportunity for the students at EML, and I look forward to working with Heidi Garner to bring this program to fruition,” says Ms. Magnolia McGlothen-Brown, Education specialist at IAFL and a recent retiree from the Trenton Board of Education.
If you have a Keyboard that you no longer use or you know a music shop that donates keyboards, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. Learn more about Piano Marvel on their website: https://pianomarvel.com/.
Written by Kat Dinh