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piano TRACKS Curriculum and Checklists

Curriculum
At the heart of the piano TRACKS project lies our piano curriculum. The curriculum currently runs from beginner level up to approximately grade 5. It is designed as a stand-alone pedagogical tool but can also be used alongside a more traditional exam based route.

The curriculum is separated into 8 Stages (Stage A – Stage H). These are the progressive levels of achievement. Stage A – Stage C are pre-grade 1 level. Following that each Stage prepares students for the next grade exam. For example, Stage D will develop a students’ skills so that they are ready to take on the challenge of Grade 1.

Stages D – H do not exactly match the requirements of any one particular exam board. The content of the syllabus aims to develop a student so that they are able to play to an intermediate standard by the end of Stage H. In future we may extend the curriculum to include more advanced skills.

The curriculum is designed to be flexible so a single student might span a number of stages at the same time.

Curriculum Modules
Crossing the Stages are knowledge and skills Modules as follows:

  1. Notes & The Stave
  2. Rhythm
  3. Tempo
  4. Pulse & Metre
  5. Dynamics
  6. Articulation
  7. Hand Positions and Coordination
  8. Intervals
  9. Accidentals
  10. Tonality
  11. Scales, Arpeggios, and Other Technical Exercises
  12. Chords and Harmony
  13. Ornaments
  14. Pedalling
  15. Forms and Structure

Not all of these Modules appear at each stage, and as you may imagine, there is potential for some overlap.

Checklists
Piano teachers can assess a students’ progress through the Stages by using the checklists. There are two for each stage: one for knowledge and one for skills.

You can use the checklists with or without the students’s input, to spot where the gaps are and what has become secure. Use this with our short and medium term trackers to set goals with your students to assist their learning and identify their achievements.

Notes
The curriculum was designed to suit our own teaching styles and preferences. You may find that you don’t agree with some of these choices and you are encouraged to adapt the original piano TRACKS material to fit your own style.

If you are adapting the material for other instruments we would love to hear from you. We may be able to put you in touch with others who are working on material for the same instrument. In future we might also be able to put the material online.

Versions and Price
The 2nd versions of the curriculum and checklists were released in May 2018. The curriculum is free to download. The checklists are now only available in a book form or as a download to our Patreon supporters.