Better to learn with numbers or letters for the keys (For the Advanced players)

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Dave Teo
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:07 am

Better to learn with numbers or letters for the keys (For the Advanced players)

Post by Dave Teo » Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:24 am

Hi this is a newbie question.

Is it better to learn with numbers or with the original letters for every key?
I started to learn with the letters but found out that numbers are much and much easier to play.

What is the best option to learn from the beginning

andrewwegierski
Posts: 378
Joined: Fri Apr 06, 2018 4:37 pm

Re: Better to learn with numbers or letters for the keys (For the Advanced players)

Post by andrewwegierski » Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:15 pm

Hi Dave,

Great question. I think it's best to learn with both. It's hard to compare them to each other - it's a bit like comparing apples and oranges.

They pertain to entirely different concepts. The note names are really good for helping with your reading and music theory skills - being able to recognize what notes you're seeing on the staff. Lots of times, I see this in beginning instrumental method books too. It's GREAT for learning the notes at first, but eventually, you'll want to challenge yourself to playing without the note names on. Remember, it's just an aid!

On the flip slide, the fingering numbers are really good for developing correct piano technique with your hands. This is a step up from just knowing the note names, at least in my opinion. Now you'll be thinking critically about not only what note it is, but what finger to use and more importantly, why. It gets a little hectic when you're thinking about this and that all at once, but it's so great for learning!

Also, it's not as important to get away from the finger numbers right away. I have a good deal of experience with the keyboard myself but I'm still using the finger numbers. It helps to learn the piece. Eventually, you can memorize them, but don't worry about it too much.

The one danger with only using fingering numbers is that you might associate notes with fingers only, and not realize what the names of the notes are that you're playing.

So, the short answer is, use all 3 methods: letters, numbers, and nothing at all. It's a bit tricky to figure out exactly what's right for you, but hopefully this helps!!
Andrew Wegierski

Support Tech & Music Arranger
andrew@playgroundsessions.com

Pohutukawa
Posts: 28
Joined: Sat Feb 24, 2018 8:18 pm

Re: Better to learn with numbers or letters for the keys (For the Advanced players)

Post by Pohutukawa » Thu Nov 08, 2018 10:55 pm

I went through rookie bootcamp only using numbers. Now I'm partway through intermediate, I'm at the same time going back through rookie and playing with no numbers or letters. This idea was suggested by someone on the FB group and it's working well for me. I reckon the numbers are great for starters, but that's just me.

Dave Teo
Posts: 5
Joined: Thu Nov 01, 2018 8:07 am

Re: Better to learn with numbers or letters for the keys (For the Advanced players)

Post by Dave Teo » Fri Nov 23, 2018 6:57 am

Thanks for the answers ;)

I started with the letters and have been sticking to it.
I am also now half way into intermediate and have sometimes trouble to switching to the right notes on the keyboard.

But think that is only going to work better to practice a lot.

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