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Discussing video
December 21, 2008
Selling Electronic Keybords in eBay to be used in MUSIC IN COLORS and SUZUKI methods.

How This works:
- For babies:
There is no age to start learning!
Even infants and toddlers can familiarize with the music and its instruments. Indeed, studies show that the Color/Note association helps to develop cognitive skills even in the first months of live.

- Ages 4+: Starting to understand the printed score.
Play with the written word in an adequate manner bridges sensory-motor experience and the appearing of representative and/or symbolic thought.

The kid will associate the colors in the staff with the keys in the keyboard intuitively with minimum assistance from parents or teachers.

- Ages 7+:
The fact that the notes were always properly positioned in the staff (following the standard notation) allows the kid to initiate the second phase in the method with minimum adult assistance. This phase in nothing but a replacing of the "Color association" with the standard score as we know it (ie. a symbol association based on position of the note in the staff).

Parents and teachers will only need to "blacken" the notes from the staff in order to initiate this second phase.

For further information about these methods, please visit the following site >

<a href=";rel=0&amp;fs=1" target="_blank">;rel=0&amp;fs=1</a>

<a href=";rel=0&amp;fs=1" target="_blank">;rel=0&amp;fs=1</a>

Author Ayesha Nicole
Rating 4.14 (7 votes)
Date February 13, 2009, 03:44:15 PM Views 4388
ebay colored keys SUZUKI method music piano baby babies kid kids Keywords ebay colored keys SUZUKI method music piano baby babies kid kids

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Author Topic: Suzuki method: Baby (2 & 4 months old) familiarizing with a "colored-keys" piano  (Read 20261 times)
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« Reply #15 on: April 09, 2009, 05:23:17 AM »

I am sooo surprise to read about this "color system" in learning piano!!  The first time I came across this method is at My Musikbox, they offer a piano program called First Touch Piano for 2.5 years-old children. 

The color is there to help our child to identify the key to press on the piano, without any immediate note-reading skill required, you can enjoy the fun of playing piano!!  I don't think it matters what color each key is being colored, cuz eventually when the child gets older, he/she will learn to identify the keys with the help of any color.  This is very cool way for really really young ones to enjoy the fun of piano playing.

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« Reply #16 on: March 07, 2010, 02:25:41 AM »

What is the name/brand for that piano keyboard? where can I buy it?



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« Reply #17 on: August 14, 2010, 01:47:45 PM »

I wish there was a standardized color coding for musical notes.  My concern is that when kids watch something like Trebellina, then are introduced to a different program, they may confuse the colors and notes. 

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« Reply #18 on: August 14, 2010, 02:41:09 PM »

Yes, ourboros1, you are exactly right!  that is one of the problems i have with color coding notes on a keyboard, violin, etc.  one system is red for c and another is yellow for c, etc. 
also, when they child starts to have any proficiency at all with these systems and they graduate to other more advanced programs/music, they have to learn it all over again.  why not just start out learning without colors?  if the kids on this forum can learn maths, reading and EK, they can surely learn 12 notes on a piano!
just my opinion... take it or leave it!
the doc

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« Reply #19 on: August 14, 2010, 03:24:12 PM »

I am really hoping Trebellina and Little Music will have the same color scheme...this is something I have thought about too.


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« Reply #20 on: August 14, 2010, 03:24:54 PM »


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« Reply #21 on: August 14, 2010, 07:29:56 PM »

i don't know what method the colors are
but it's not the Suzuki method
i've read all Dr Suzuki's book, taken workshops, and my daughters talking classes
and i've never seen or heard anyone using a color coded piano
as for the Suzuki method not working i would have to disagree
my husband was friends with the head of the violin department at Juilliard
who was train with the Suzuki method as a child
and he advised us to start the method with our daughter


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« Reply #22 on: September 22, 2010, 10:25:28 PM »

I agree with SoftMozart's comments about some of these things being a dead end. Color coding goes back even before the 60s, it is not new, and the trap is that if you get dependent on it then it is like numbering systems in that when it is not there, you are helpless. Getting kids started however is key, so many use color coding to start, but either abandon it abruptly or only have a small sample of material and songs in that format. Her approach is solid in that the goal is actually music literacy, i.e., the kids start with colors and transition to reading music notation. I have not used her method but it is similar in many respects to our approach, and I find her logic sound, and she seems to have success with it. We too have seen that colors are really primary, and kids know their colors by two or three and can play Beethoven in minutes without knowing it was supposed to be hard. When we begin to transition them to learning the note names or fingerings, there is a palpable cognitive pause that you can see as the interpret the symbol rather than just match the color. The key is conditioning and gradual transitioning from the color coded "map" or grid to recognizing how music  notation represents what they now know how to play, the way you learn to speak first then to read words you already know. Suzuki method has two known limitations or challenges, though it has spawned many successful musicians, and those are reading and improvisation, especially with piano, where you read the harmony, rhythm and melody all at once, as opposed to violin where you mostly read melody alone (in rhythm of course).

What both ourselves and SoftMozart have attempted to do is leverage the power and intuitiveness of color coding but use it to transition them to music notation. As crazy and confusing as music notation is (it is a thousand years old and started with a monk's hand, and has been modified thousands of times to keep up with new music developments until it is a complex obsolete code for most people) it is still the accepted and universal method for sharing and learning music, new and old. My analogy is that the Chinese must have really considered switching to an alphabet system at some point, but the historical, literary, and cultural treasures lost would have been tragic. We have the same situation with music notation, it is crazy, outdated, illogical, and yet universal, so we must learn it to keep our musical treasure chest alive. Starting with color coding is great, but it needs to be thought through to be a real vehicle to deeper learning and not a dead end crutch.

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« Reply #23 on: September 26, 2010, 12:57:05 AM »

i agree with you that color can not be a dead end. From your experience when (aprox at what age) is it conveinent to stop leaving colors and emphasizing the notes?


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« Reply #24 on: October 11, 2010, 09:00:14 PM »

I am reposting and editing some posts from other sections to summarize our position on color coding, and our logic. This is not to put down other systems, only explain our thinking, process and results.

There is a lot of talk about whether colors work in teaching or if people will be hopelessly tied to color coding and never learn to read sheet music (contradictory assertions by the way, which is it, it doesn't work or it works too well?)

I am not going to argue about this, just post one of many videos, one that for me closes the case that anyone can both learn with the colors and then learn to transition to music notation. He is not an exception, he is the norm, even though he faced extraordinary challenges. We learn best by doing, and the game is designed to transition children from the colors to the reading. Here is one irrefutable piece of proof.

I cannot compare this to Soft Mozart, I have not used the system, she seems to have success with it, but I am pretty sure she has not used Piano Wizard Academy either. When you see Piano Wizard Academy in action, there is no more argument about whether it works or not, and the children are insisting on doing it again and again.

There is a method to our color coding madness, as there is in DoReMeFaSoft, it is different, but let me explain ours. First, color coding often restricts itself to the white keys, or diatonic scale in C major. This is obviously a dead end, as most music is not in C or does not stay there if it is. We decided to map the colors to the chromatic scale, or all 12 notes. We used white for "C" because that is a reference note for many styles of teaching. We experimented with following the color wheel at first, but the adjacent colors (red, orange, yellow, light green etc) were too similar to distinguish easily. So we tried contrasting colors, and it was a lot of work to come up with something that both worked (first priority) and was not aesthetically clashing. We finally decided to let the white keys be pastels, and fluorescent type colors, with the black keys being darker, and we distanced dark green and light green so they weren't adjacent, same with blue and red. We used white and black and brown because we wanted colors that were not subtle that any kid could see and say. That being said, the biggest issue was to be able to map to MIDI. MIDI means Music Instrument Digital Interface, and it is a computer protocol that has been around for over 20 years, and there are hundreds of thousands of songs online in this format (we are upgrading our Wizardtunes to include tens of thousands of legal MIDI files from Hal Leonard Corp). Computers could not handle the confusing code of music notation, so they created something much more mathematical and simple to translate to computers. Then people translate the MIDI into music notation. We used this bridge technology to create a system that turns almost any song written in music notation or MIDI into a game, that would then take them back to the notation. By mapping the colors to the chromatic scale we ensured that anything from Twinkle Twinkle Little Star to Rachmaninoff's Second Piano Concerto could be played in the game. That consideration of making this open source so people could load and learn their favorite music became our main consideration for the 12 color system. We transition the kids to fingering numbers before taking the colors away completely, so the color coding is just a step along their path to music literacy, one dropped in the last two steps of the 5 step process.

 We also had to deal with two different color schemes CMYK used for print and RGB used for computer screens and other backlit sources, so our stickers are actually printed on a 10 color pantone printer, quite expensive, but it helps the kids see the colors on the screen match the ones on the keyboard. The stickers are washable and removable, so they can be put on virtually any digital or MIDI keyboard.

A little history is perhaps in order. We first developed the game, and its curriculum was just a random collection of folk, classical and pop songs. While it had the four steps, it did not have any supporting materials how to use them to move from the game to sheet music, nor did it have a step-wise set of songs to take someone gradually from zero to 60. In other words there was no smooth path or guidance. It was at this time Fisher-Price licensed the program from us for a toy version, "I Can Play Piano". This was our first deal with a Fortune 100 company (Mattel) and we learned a lot about this process. First, they did not know music at all (in fact their keyboard was missing a key when it came out) and their arrangements were worse than ours for easy learning. As you know, music is infinitely complex and some kind of sequence needs to be laid out or people can get quickly overwhelmed. Parallel with this we of course saw those gaps, but did not want to do something half way. At that time my former piano teacher, Don Beattie, founder of the International Beethoven Society, MC of the World Piano Pedagogy Conference and 30 year professor of piano pedagogy at SIU embraced the task along with his wife Delayna, also with about 20 years experience with children, to create a solid, play tested piano curriculum to go with the game. This took him about 18 months to complete, and he worked with children every step of the way to optimize that sequence and those arrangements. He was having spectacular results from those kids, children with behavior issues were doing their homework to be able to "practice piano", a girl with dyslexia's reading improved to grade level, his college student helpers were changing their majors to music education based on their rich experiences, and more. He then came to Boulder Colorado to do the first every "boot camp" of a week long intensive class at our local school, a kind of summer camp for kids. The children were grouped ages 3-6 in the morning, 7-12 year olds in the afternoon, the classes were about an hour long, 4 days in a row, and then the fifth day, a Friday, they had a little recital. On that fifth day, the kids had learned up to 20 songs in a single week (Books 1 and 2 of the Academy) and were reading at the grand piano with no tears or trauma. You talk about my enthusiasm, but even I was stunned. I realized that Don had a lot more science and art behind his choices of curriculum then I had realized, and that somehow his contribution needed to be captured. We spent the next 18 months filming 50 lessons, each based on one of the first 50 songs, but gearing the video lessons toward PARENTS and NON-music educators, with extensive notes for piano teachers included. This was the creation of a much deeper product, the Piano Wizard Academy, which I don't believe you really understand, is much deeper than the original game we designed years before. We also modified the game play, and created the sheet music, created an Academy Quickstart DVD so people could get a handle on all the was involved.

As for reviews and testimonials, I only gave you one (above), we have dozens and dozens, but that one testimonial, spontaneous words of gratitude from a mother and a video she posted online, speaks volumes for me. If you read the mother's words, you realize that somehow this game and method reached even someone who had trouble with basic language and comprehension, couldn't understand even toddler programs on TV like Teletubbies, but was now playing piano and reading music, with his language abilities improving as well. My point is, this dramatic example proves it will work for almost anyone. We see every day other examples, but his moved us beyond words.

I consider this system to be "training wheels" for the piano, nothing more, nothing less. A great way to get started without the normal trauma associated with learning music, and especially reading, which as you know is usually where you lose most kids, and yet is fundamental to their musical literacy. This program, the Piano Wizard Academy, is NOT the only way, the only path, the be all end all. It is a great tool, and a welcome advance, and designed for people with NO music or education experience to be able to succeed quickly and consistently. One day I would like to meet with you HH, perhaps at a conference, and we can trade notes as fellow colleagues both on the same mission, to bring music to the world, and make it a universal language, for the betterment of mankind. I know what we have, and I am sure there is great merit in what you have, as there is in Suzuki practices etc., but this is another approach, and it is WORKING. Thank God for that, and God bless everyone trying to find a better way for all.


Chris Salter
CEO and Founder
Piano Wizard Academy

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« Reply #25 on: October 11, 2010, 09:57:17 PM »

Let's talk lirics after the proven facts
I can't wait for your answers! Let's do it in one thread for comfort of our readers!


\"Education in music is most sovereign because more than anything else rhythm and harmony find there way to the inmost should and take strongest hold upon it, bringing with them and imparting grade if one is rightly trained. Plato
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« Reply #26 on: October 22, 2010, 09:41:19 PM »

We have had some spirited discussion in this forum, with lots of curiosity and different points of view, especially about color codes and music, but ranging over a whole host of aspects and approaches. We don't shrink from that, we hope to learn from it and take the best ideas and bring those tools to our homes to help our children grow.

With that in mind, we shared the free report on "Is Music a Birthright?"( that gives some perspective the challenges of learning music, and their roots, some of which was brought out in our discussions. SoftMozart has some similar, more in depth articles on the origins and challenges of traditional music notation as well, the summary of which you can see in this thread ( What I also added, in a different section, to try and give some perspective of the range of approaches and choices, is a series of posts about the four common approaches to learning piano (up to now). I believe that our methods, both Hellene of SoftMozart and Piano Wizard Academy, begin to shape a "fifth way". What is important to appreciate is they were both developed in response to something that was not really working, in the context of the limitations of the other approaches, trying to compensate for those gaps and yet leverage their strengths. Though each method has its advocates and champions, including Hellene and I for our own, and those advocates can be as we have seen quite passionate and compelling, NONE OF THESE APPROACHES IS PERFECT. We do strive to honestly "perfect" our process every day, with more and more knowledge, and this forum has been I think very fruitful in its exploration of the options. Here is my latest contribution to that conversation.

Below is the link to that section of the forum.

I don't know how many parents are following all this, but I can tell you if you are, you are now MUCH more knowledgeable about both the challenges of music education, and the pallet of options available, and I hope it helps you all find your own unique solution to your children's needs, and leads to a less dogmatic, more practical, efficient and fun way to bring music into their lives.

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