A camera is a useful tool during piano lessons. It’s quick and easy and doesn’t use a lot a valuable lesson time.
Beginning students usually have trouble with a rounded hand shape. Sometimes it’s the index finger and sometimes it’s the pinkie that flies up, no matter how hard we have tried to keep it rounded by dropping into the keys.
Notice how this child is gripping the hand and hiking up the 4th finger? The tension causes the pinkie to fly up. This problem developed over the summer when she was having fun playing by ear. After I took the picture, we looked at it together and it was like a light bulb went on. I don’t think she really understood what I meant until I showed her the picture. Children just want to have fun at the piano and sometimes they don’t even know what you’re talking about. It can get real tedious for the average child, so anything we can do to make it more fun and easy to understand, the better.
Most digital cameras and cell phones have viewing screens large enough to see little fingers. If you have one, give it a try.