Piano curriculum : what teachers are using and how it aligns with Jerome Bruner's enactive, iconic, and symbolic learning theory.




Nelson, Patty, 1963-

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The purpose of this study was to determine what order piano teachers of beginning students ages six to nine introduced musical concepts in the first year of study, what piano method books they were using and if the order the teachers were introducing the concepts aligned with the order the concepts were introduced in the piano method books. In addition, this study also looked at the three most commonly used method books to see if they aligned with Jerome Bruner’s learning theory concerning enactive, iconic, and symbolic learning. The subjects of this study were 562 teachers who were members of Music Teachers National Association (MTNA) who each indicated that they taught beginning piano students ages six to nine. The teachers were asked to rank musical concepts in the order they introduced them in the first year of study and what piano method book they were currently using. The results of this study indicated the teachers’ rankings of the concepts correlates significantly at the p < .01 level with the method books rankings. The analysis of the method books indicated the books use enactive and symbolic learning for all concepts but do not use iconic learning except for hand positions, steps, and skips. Further research to determine exactly how teachers are using the piano method books in their private lesson studios is recommended.



Piano curriculum., Piano teaching., Learning theory., Beginning piano., Bruner, Jerome.