Disclosure: This is a paid conversation on behalf of HoffmanAcademy.com but a positive review was not required and opinions are 100% my own.
When I was asked about a paid review for HoffmanAcademy.com, I immediately knew this would either be an amazing blessing for our family or a complete dud. After all, I am married to a professional musician and music educator. My fear was that he would take one look at this video series and stick his nose in the air with a snooty sniff. What do you think his reaction was? Please hold…
Created by Joseph Hoffman, HoffmanAcademy.com provides an interactive music education without the need to leave home. Expensive materials are not required and the video lessons are 100% free. Supplemental materials are available, but are an incredible value and are only needed if you want to provide your student with complete musical training in piano and basic theory.
The printable materials for lessons 1-41 includes 64 pages of instructions for parents, detailed lessons for children to reinforce what they see in the videos, and written learning exercises. When you purchase this download for $23.95 (on sale right now for $19), you will also receive a free mp3 album to help train your child’s ear by listening to the accompanying music.
How the online piano lessons work
I placed our nine year old, Lira, at the piano with the laptop or iPad. Each video lesson is approximately 8 minutes long, so she does not grow tired. (Please note that although the lessons are relatively short, additional practice is encouraged for your child to develop a musical proficiency.)
As Lira worked through the piano lesson, she was able to mimic everything she saw as Mr. Hoffman is extremely clear in his presentation. The lessons are presented with such simplicity that I am planning to give Franc (our 6 year old) a chance with the lessons.
After the video, Lira sat at the table and reviewed what she learned during the online piano lesson with the printable materials. If a bunch of loose pages is intimidating for you, I plan to swing by Office Depot and have them bind the pages with a spiral comb.
What does my professional musician husband think of free online piano lessons?
First, I have to say that as a trained vocalist, I was super impressed with the thoroughness of the lessons. In the very first video, I even learned some new terminology.
As for the music educator in our family, he was very pleased with the amount of time and professionalism Mr. Hoffman has obviously put into this product, and the fact that the videos are free? “Why didn’t I think of that!?”
What I like most about FreePianoLessons4Kids.com
Regardless of where you are, you can access Hoffman Academy on a computer, laptop, or tablet since the videos are available through YouTube.
As parents who believe in the value of fine arts in education, Bill and I are both excited to have Hoffman Academy available as an option for our children. When you have four kids, running back and forth to different lessons and sports is exhausting and can pick away at the unity of your family. However, Hoffman Academy will help provide our children with a strong music theory foundation without a need for expensive lessons and time on the road.
I already mentioned the printable materials available for lessons 1-41 that include 64 pages of written learning exercises. The price is a very reasonable $23.95 (on sale right now for $19), and you also receive a free mp3 album. To purchase a workbook that would include everything you receive from Hoffman Academy , you would need to pay about $28 and would need to pay more to get an accompanying CD.
The only thing I didn’t like
The audio of the lessons is not always reliable. In a small room like our bedroom, the sound was fine even though the movement of the camera does cause fluctuations in your ability to hear Mr. Hoffman at a consistent volume. Once in our living room, which is much larger with a vaulted ceiling… not to mention three loud siblings close by, the sound is much more difficult to discern. However, once we started using a headset, the problem was solved.
Overall, I would highly recommend HoffmanAcademy.com for anyone who wants to learn to play the piano. No previous music training is required, the lessons are thorough, and the experience is very interactive.