This is how to get started:
A music work station.
The music work station for learning to play the piano consists of a computer connected to an electric piano keyboard or digital piano. If you are short of space, a portable piano keyboard has an advantage in being smaller and more easily movable. It can be installed before a lesson and put away after practice to save some space. However, if you can afford it, it is much better to organize a permanent space. Our experience shows that your students or you will practice more often if the piano keyboard is always available without any additional set-up time and effort.
To run the Gentle Piano™ software, you may use any modern computer (the least expensive on the market) or even a 10-year-old one if it has a decent graphics card and enough memory. We recommend using a good computer monitor for piano practice. It will add enjoyment to the practice and spare your students’ eyes.
You may use any electronic piano keyboard or digital piano that has MIDI functionality (nowadays, most of them do). The main criteria of choosing a piano are the price and the quality of its sound. For young beginners we recommend any inexpensive Casio or Yamaha 61-key keyboard.
Piano to computer connection
To use the interactivity of our software, you must connect your electric piano to your computer. We have MIDI interfaces for you in our store. Buy MIDI interface here.
Tables and stands
You may put the piano and computer monitor on the same table, use a special table or a stand for the piano keyboard, or put the computer monitor or laptop on the top of the digital piano. Be sure that the foundation for the piano and monitor is stable. Many keyboard stands, especially folding ones, lack this quality. Such stands can fall down after any accidental move, which is inevitable when working with children. For a piano keyboard, we recommend using an adjustable table or stand that is lower than the monitor table.
It is very important to match the height of the keyboard with the height of the chair for the student to achieve correct posture. If the student puts her palms on the piano keyboard, her relaxed forearms must be parallel to the floor. It is helpful if you can adjust the height of the chair, the piano, or both.
Placing the monitor
During the student’s piano practice, the monitor will play the role of the music sheet, so put it behind the piano keyboard or on the top of the digital piano. If it is not possible to place it in the center of the piano because of a sheet stand, you may shift the monitor to one side of the piano. It doesn't matter if the student must turn his head a little while reading and playing.
We usually place the computer keyboard right on the top of the piano keyboard or digital piano.