||It is always very difficult for the piano teachers to select appropriate teaching materials from many published method series. Assigning them to meet the need of each individual student is also a challenge. From the Chinese editions of several piano teaching materials, the following three elementary piano method series with similar attributes were selected as the base of this research: David Carr Glover Piano Library, Bastien Piano Library, and Alfred's Basic Piano Library. Through systematic analysis and comparison, this research reaches certain conclusions about the similarities and differences between these method series. The outcome of this research may help piano teachers in selecting method books more objectively and in improving their teaching techniques.|
This research compares three selected piano method series from the following four aspects: the longitudinal connection of core courses, the latitudinal connection of core courses, the functional techniques of core courses, and the degree of applicability and compatibility of the supplementary courses. Items being analyzed for the first two aspects are basic knowledge of piano playing, reading approach (including pre- staff reading, staff recognition, recognition of intervals, scales and tonalities), rhythmic training, playing techniques, and interpretation or expression. The results of all analyses are arranged in tabulate form with necessary comments. The functional techniques of core courses are summarized in four categories: sight reading, transposition, harmonization with primary chords as the accompaniment, and playing primary chord progressions. The degree of applicability and compatibility of supplementary courses in the selected series is also determined through the consideration of same items listed above.
The findings of this research are threefold which reveal the uniqueness of each piano method series: 1.The "Piano Solo" book of the David Carr Glover Piano Library works better with its core courses in the latitudinal connections than the "Piano Repertoire" book. 2. The Bastien Piano Library is the only one out of the three selected series offering the functional techniques of sight reading and emphasizing the transposition technique. 3. The Alfred's Basic Piano Library performs the best in the longitudinal and latitudinal connections within its core lessons. Its selected supplementary courses and "Piano Lessons" books have the highest degree of applicability and compatibility.