Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Adventus MusIQ Homeschool-review

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For Christmas Makenzie asked for and received a keyboard so she could play around and eventually take some piano lessons.  I was thrilled to see that MusIQ Homeschool from Adventus came up for review because I knew that Makenzie would be really excited.  

First I wanted to let you know that if you want to use this program you need a MIDI piano keyboard. Adventus does offer one that you can purchase on their website that's a plug and play and is $114.95. Thankfully the keyboard we had purchased for Kenzie at Christmas was compatible and all we had to purchase was a USB cable to hook it up to the computer. Although it did take me a little while to figure out why everything wasn't working correctly at first.  I'm affectionately called the "geek squad" of our family so I got it figured out and working and then Makenzie was off on her music journey!
 Kenzie hasn't had any piano or music lessons ever so we decided to start her at the very beginning with Children's Music Journey Vol. 1 (each volume has between 25-35 lessons).  She's 12 years old and caught on really quickly so she was able to skip ahead quite a bit and is now on Vol. 3.  As you can tell from the picture this software is all animated and would really appeal to a younger crowd of ages 4-10.  Even though she's 12 she's still enjoying the lessons.  Each lesson would begin with a piece of music by a famous composer and then that composer would teach the lesson for the day.  As you can see in the picture up above the first lesson began with Ludwig Von Beethoven.  After each lesson then 10 games open up and they help reinforce what the student has just learned.  Another fun component is that you are able to compose your own music with dozens of different instruments.

Recommended ages are 4-18 and they offer a 7 year curriculum that includes over 20 levels and is for beginner to advanced intermediate students.

2 different options are available, you can download the software onto your computer which does require a monthly subscription (lesson plans are not included with the monthly subscriptions) and is only $10.95 per month or you can purchase the software and they will send you CD-ROM's. Depending on which software you choose then your price could start at $89.95 and go up to $489.95 for the complete bundle.  I really think any of these options are a wonderful price because I was checking piano lesson prices in our area and they were about $20 per lesson per child and most of them require at least 4 lessons per month.

Makenzie has been enjoying her keyboard lessons and practices quite often.  I told her that her "required" practice per day was 30 min. I feel that's very fair and is exactly how long I had to practice the piano when I was a child.  Although lesson plans were included in our package I'm just letting her move at her own pace right now, when she's been playing for several months that option might change. This has not been a problem for her at all since she loves this software so much she can easily play for an hour or more (if I let her).  She's soaking it up like a sponge and is so excited about music now!

 I'm hoping Kylan will catch her enthusiasm and try the curriculum for himself.  Which brings me to my next plus about this curriculum, you have the option for many different students to use the curriculum.  It keeps track of each students profile and remembers where they are at and how often they have practiced.  That's a bonus in my world, especially if you have multiple children that want to learn to play the piano.

Thanks for reading,

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