Forgive me if I sound ignorant, but does anyone actually go through an entire series of books such as the Music Tree? I don't recall doing more than Book 1 when I started piano and after that I was performing "real" music. Yet these methods exist in books 1, 2, 3..... on and on so someone must be using them!
At the least, this experience reminded me of the importance of listening to my intuition when determing a student's curriculum and at the greatest, it got me reading up on learning styles again. Here's a breif run down of my current thoughts on the Music Tree Primer and Suzuki Book 1:
The Music Tree: Time to Begin
Teaches Interval Recognition--highly useful once a full staff is finally introduced
Teaches the concept of reading the staff by breaking it down to the "nuts and bolts"
The fact that every song requires the student to figure out the changing staff, which lines and spaces are which notes, is confusing!!
The "songs" just sound like a few notes until the teacher part is played.
Suzuki Book 1
Emphasizes playing with a good tone
Uses a carefully selected progression of quality music that is interesting to the student and sounds like music when played alone
Can not be used by self-learners as it does not explain musical concepts at all. i.e. Staff reading must be taught by the teacher.
Follows Suzuki's Method which is cannot be fully incorporated by a teacher without the certification
I never consider my learning days to be over, so I am constantly trying to learn new things about piano pedagogy and would love to take piano lessons again for a while. There is nothing quite like teaching while you are actually learning yourself. In the mean time, I read as much as I can and I use all of the resources I can get my hands on. Through these experiences, I am filing away valuable information I will use for the rest of my life. I will not "throw out the baby with the bathwater!"