Hello Piano - Lessons & Games

App review by
Ana Beltran, Common Sense Media
Hello Piano - Lessons & Games App Poster Image
Video lessons and adaptive games make piano practice fun.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Through games and mini interactive lessons, kids will learn piano playing techniques and how to read notes and music sheets. They'll explore how to play different songs. The app also incorporates games and music theory that help develop rhythm and ear training. In addition to practicing piano through a digital device, it also offers the option to connect a midi keyboard for a more realistic experience.  

Ease of Play

Simple to follow and provides tons of visual cues and supports, including color coding and an animated guiding hand. Clear directions for each of the games appears on the screen each time kids play. The lessons build on each other and are paced out for kids. Completing a day's session unlocks the next lesson.   

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After the free three-day trial period, a subscription is necessary. Reminders to users that they have the option to connect a real keyboard, which may require special purchase. Under settings, kids will also find a list of apps by the same developer with direct link to the app store.  

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What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Hello Piano - Lessons & Games is an education app that introduces kids to playing piano and helps them build their musical skills through interactive lessons and games. The app addresses four key components of playing piano: rhythm, playing techniques, ear training, and reading music sheets. The app provides clear directions and ample visual cues, in the form of a guiding hand and color clues, to help users navigate lessons and games. Each lesson includes a brief video lesson followed by interactive games that encourage kids to practice the skill. The experience is adaptive and aims to meet kids' musical needs. Players have the option of practicing piano on their digital device or connecting a real keyboard. A subscription is required to continue enjoying the app's features after the three-day free trial period. Read the developer's privacy policy for details on how your (or your kids') information is collected, used, and shared and any choices you may have in the matter, and note that privacy policies and terms of service frequently change.          

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What's it about?

HELLO PIANO - LESSONS & GAMES addresses basic music theory and information about to playing piano. It includes lessons that teach names of notes and correct playing posture. The adaptive experience starts off with a brief game-type assessment of kids' rhythm, playing techniques, experience with sheet music, and ability to identify and distinguish musical sounds. Kids can then choose from the selection of courses, which include "Beginners 15 Day Challenge" and "Music Fun Course." The courses are paced out across a number of days and build progressively based on performance or adapts to kids' needs. The daily challenges within each course include video lessons followed by a sequence of games the reinforce the mini-lesson and also provide an opportunity to develop key music skills. Outside daily challenges, kids can choose from 10 different games to continue practicing the skill of their choice or choose one of the thirteen theory lessons. The app also offers songbooks categorized by level of difficulty or genre. Under the My Stats tab, kids can track their personal progress. Under settings, kids will find the option to personalize their curriculum by prioritizing certain listed goals.  

Is it any good?

This fun and engaging musical experience is appropriate for kids and teens interested in learning piano playing basics using brief tutorial videos and games. Sometimes the biggest hurdle of learning to play an instrument is finding the time and motivation to practice consistently. The entertaining design of Hello Piano - Lessons & Games and the targeted and succinct design of the daily challenges will motivate kids to make practice a part of their daily routine. Kids won't even realize they're developing and practicing key skills. For example, they won't realize they’re ear training when playing the Note Pool game, which requires them to listen to melodies and connect musical dots to recreate it. The app is easy to navigate; some aspects are quite intuitive and the rest have clear written prompts and are supported by visual clues. The videos and theory lessons are clear and to the point. The theory lessons cover a range of topics, including timing and measure, notes value, chords, and intervals. The option to connect a real-life keyboard makes for a more complete experience. It allows kids to use what they're learning onscreen and practicing through games to actually play the instrument. The app is also adaptive, meeting player's needs and keeping the game interesting. The progress tracking feature is a great tool for families who want to track and celebrate consistent practice. Currently the app only offers two courses and has a limited collection of songbook titles. There are only three classical song options and three under Dance Hits. Although there could be more songbook options, the app is a fun way to learn and practice piano.   

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the benefits of learning how to play an instrument when using Hello Piano - Lessons & Games. Learning to play the piano can help memory retention, spatial intelligence, and hand eye coordination. Although at times challenging, learning to play an instrument also helps kids set goals and develop grit.   

  • Consider how to use this app to support piano practice. The app can be an on the go tool for practicing and building music skills, such as rhythms and a more intuitive understanding of sounds. Kids have the option of exploring and practicing piano on their digital device or they can connect a real-life keyboard in order to make a kinesthetic connection between the onscreen games and real-life experience. 

App details

  • Devices: iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad
  • Subjects: Language & Reading: following directions
    Arts: improvising and music analysis, music, rhythm
  • Skills: Tech Skills: using and applying technology
  • Price: Free to try
  • Pricing structure: Free to try (three-day trial, then subscription options from $7.99 - $49.99)
  • Release date: November 15, 2019
  • Category: Education
  • Topics: Music and Sing-Along
  • Size: 409.80 MB
  • Publisher: Gismart OOO
  • Version: 1.19
  • Minimum software requirements: iOS 10.0 or later
  • Last updated: August 17, 2020

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