Should Your Child Take Private Or School Piano Lessons?

Is learning from a public music school such as Yamaha a better idea of engaging a private home piano teacher in Singapore?

Check out the answer below! To get the ideal answer for yourself and your child, there are several different criteria that you may want to consider.

First of all, how old is your child? If your child is a teenager, then having him or her go to lessons and travelling to and fro by himself or herself is an easy task. Additionally, there is very little for you to worry about, especially in Singapore. However, if your child is just a toddler or below the age of 7 or 10, then many parents may not feel secure having their child travelling by themselves due to lots of car traffic in Singapore. Therefore, many parents will fetch their kids to the music schools. This can be a hassle if you do not have access to a car all the time, or your house is nowhere near a music school. In such a case, then having a piano teacher go to your house is a much better idea.

Second of all, does your child learn better in a group class or with one to one attention. While it may feel as though one to one learning is always the best, some children learn best in groups due to interaction with other piano students allowing them to inspire more learning. Therefore, this really depends on your child, and you should take note of that. If your child learns better in a group, it is probably a better idea to send your child to a local music school within Singapore. If not, getting a home piano teacher in Singapore is a much better idea!

Third of all, do you like the way a music school teaches their students? If you really like it, then make sure to consider it. This is because a music school usually charges much higher rates than any other private home piano tutor in Singapore. This is because they have much larger overheads to cover such as rental instead of just travelling fees for private piano teachers in Singapore. If your child particularly likes learning from a school, then send him or her there. If not, or if your child is neutral to home or school learning, then it is probably a better idea to just save the money and get a private piano teacher in Singapore for your child.

How Long To Get Grade 8 Piano In Singapore For Your Child?

How long does it take a child to reach grade 8 piano certification in Singapore? There are many answers to this question – namely dependent on how focused your child wants to be. There are parents and children who want to take it slower and focus on learning other piano pieces as well. However, there are parents and children who want to reach grade 8 piano as quickly as possible. If reaching it as quickly as possible is your child or your goal, then read on. If you are looking for a private piano teacher in Singapore instead, then go here

First of all, your child must take up till grade 5 theory for the ABRSM piano exams to be eligible to grade 6 and beyond for the practical exams. However, he or she need not take theory lessons beyond the grade 5 level to be eligible for that. Since when most people say grade 8 piano, they are referring to the practical exams, most students only take the theory up till grade 5. An additional benefit of only taking theory up till grade 5 is that you will be able to cram more into each piano lesson your child takes, because he or she is only learning the practical part for each lesson instead of half practical and half theory.

Second of all, there are 3 practical exam sessions a year in Singapore. For example, the first session is for 25 Feb – 29 Mar 2019. However, registration for that session’s exams are back in 22 Oct – 2 Nov 2018. The second is 2 Jul – 2 Aug 2019 and registration period is 4 – 15 March 2019. The last session will be 26 Aug – 27 Sep 2019 and registration period is 22 April – 3 May 2019.

As you can tell from the above, in the event that if your child fail the exam in the first session, and his or her exam was on the 25 March 2019, your child can quickly reapply between 22 April – 3 May 2019 and take his or her second practical exam in that same year 26 Aug – 27 Sep 2019. This means that students technically have 2 attempts to take the same graded piano exam in the same year.

At that run rate, your child will be able to reach grade 8 piano if you take less than 2 attempts to pass every practical exam.

Third of all, what if your child does not fail and manage to pass everything on the first try? Then, technically, he or she can take 2 graded exams per year. Your child can pass grade 1 at 25 Feb – 29 Mar 2019, and then apply for grade 2 exam during 22 April – 3 May 2019  for the exam dates 26 Aug – 27 Sep 2019. He or she will then pass grade 2 exams, and then apply for grade 3 during 22 Oct – 2 Nov 2019. And so on. This is however, not an easy feat, especially for the higher grades. However, if your child manages to pull it off, then you will take 4 years to reach grade 8 piano in Singapore.

What some people do instead, is that they take one exam per year, but they skip certain grades. For example, in 2019, they take the exam for grade 1, and then immediately prepare for grade 3 or 4 in 2020, instead of squeezing 2 sequential graded piano exams per year. In this case, you may also be able to complete and get grade 8 piano in 3.5 to 5 years.

Keep in mind though, that the average music student in Singapore takes around 8 to 10 years to reach grade 8 piano.

How Much Do Piano Lessons Really Cost In Singapore?

piano lesson costs in Singapore

Lots of parents are considering letting their children learn the piano as a musical instrument. However, finances are a real consideration, and so let us look at some of these common costs related to taking piano lessons. Additionally, I will share with you some hidden costs which first time parents may not be aware are related to their children taking piano lessons in Singapore!

First of all, the main cost will be the fees that you pay to the teacher. When you get a piano teacher for your child, you will need to pay the teacher on a monthly or weekly basis (usually monthly – though you are to clear up this point with the agency you sign up with). This monthly costs will be fixed, and usually only changed when your child advances up the ABRSM grades. This cost ranges from between $120 to $150 per month for 4 lessons for ABRSM grade 1. This then increases by around $20 per grade up till around $200 for ABRSM grade 4 piano lessons. After that, the increase is greater as your child will be receiving 60 minutes piano lessons instead of the 45 minutes piano lessons for the lower grades. For table form break down, refer to the following:

Grade 1 – $120 to $150
Grade 2 – $140 to $170
Grade 3 – $160 to $190
Grade 4 – $180 to $210
Grade 5 – $210 to $240
Grade 6 – $240 to $270
Grade 7 – $270 to $300
Grade 8 – $300 to $330

The second cost will be the piano purchase cost. While some families in Singapore choose to rent a piano instead of buying one, I strongly recommend you purchase one instead. It is far cheaper in the long run, and you can also sell it eventually. Therefore, you don’t incur 100 percent of the cost of the piano in reality although you do need to pay it upfront. However, do note that many piano sellers and resellers actually offer an interest free loan payment program. Although this is not a financial consultant website, you should just opt for the interest free loan payment program. With that said, most first hand upright pianos cost between $7000 to $15000, depending on the quality. I recommend you pick something in the middle so that it is not too expensive but enough for your child to learn on as he or she progresses through the ABRSM grades. Most second hand upright pianos cost between $4000 to $13000 in Singapore.

The third cost when it comes to taking piano lessons in Singapore will be the ABRSM examination application fees. Each application costs hundreds of dollars, especially in the higher grades. Both theory and practical ABRSM piano examinations will need to be applied for separately. This means that there will be separate charges for each too! For ABRSM’s 2019 piano practical exam fees in Singapore, refer to the following table:

Grade 1 – $204
Grade 2 – $245
Grade 3 – $265
Grade 4 – $286
Grade 5 – $296
Grade 6 – $377
Grade 7 – $428
Grade 8 – $510

For the music theory examination application fees in Singapore for year 2019, refer to the following:

Grade 1 – $112
Grade 2 – $122
Grade 3 – $133
Grade 4 – $153
Grade 5 – $163
Grade 6 – $184
Grade 7 – $194
Grade 8 – $204

Do note that the examination application fees will increase over time to keep up with inflation.

The next cost you want to look out for is the any learning materials. This will include things such as the metronome, piano exam books, casual pop song sheet music, exam CDs e.t.c. These are things that the piano teacher will purchase on behalf of your child, and you will be required to reimburse the teacher. These are costs which are necessary most of the time, with the exception of pop song sheet music. This is purely if your child also wishes to learn songs other than the ABRSM related exam pieces and scales e.t.c.

Last but not least, it will be any potential exam reapplication fees. No parents nor piano students want this, but it is possible that your child may fail at a particular exam. In the event of this, your child will then need to reapply for the same examination again. This means that the relevant piano exam fees will need to be paid to ABRSM again.