About two years ago, in the middle of my late fifties, I started learning to play the piano. I used to play guitar, both acoustic and electric during my college days but I have been away from playing musical instruments for a long time. It seems we have a piano lesson studio in each block of major cities in my country so quite easy to find one nearby where I lived at that time. My piano teacher first selected a book for me to start from very basics. For me, she chose a textbook which was written in Germany in the 19th century. The author of the book is Ferdinand Beyer (1806 – 1863). He wrote the textbook sometime around 1850. His textbook was first introduced in 1881 by a piano instructor from New England Conservatory of Music in Boston. Since then the textbook was very popular in Japan especially among young students who learn basic piano skills and music theory.
I asked my piano teacher why I should use such an old textbook while I can find hundreds of modern piano lesson book at the bookstore. “Yes, there are so many ways for you to learn playing the piano using many different methods but either way you need to learn “must-to-learns” in proper order and in the proper manner. This Bayer textbook is very old yet still the best if you like the classical era or the Romantic era of music.” Indeed, I like the music in that era, especially piano music by Beethoven, Mozart, Schumann…etc. She continued “if you already know what kind of music you like, there are certainly better ways to learn to play piano. I think Bayer left the best way for you”.
After a little more than two years, I still work on the textbook following the method Bayer architected. Every tune has a purpose, every tune has a joy to play, so I never get bored practicing. Every next song gives me a challenge a little higher than my current sills level so I am put outside of the comfortable zone, which makes me try harder so I can come back to my comfort zone again. This pulling out from and coming back to a comfortable zone makes a good learning cycle and I feel I am moving forward or climbing up next step in each lesson.
My Piano lesson also gives me a life lesson and professional lesson as a practitioner who uses another kind of method called “LEGO®️ SERIOUS PLAY®️” or LSP. When we LSP facilitator learned the method, we learned the method in the best textbook published by the Association of Master Trainers in the LEGO®️ SERIOUS PLAY®️ in the 4-day foundation training. The method is robust and very clear as long as you hold your objectives of learning the method. LSP method was architected for the clear purpose of unlocking our hidden knowledge, constructing collective intelligence otherwise not possible. By learning and practicing the knowledge and skills explained in the method, you can make a different kind of meeting where EVERY and ALL participants lean forward to talk and listen.
Playing with LEGO bricks are always fun for kids and adults at home or even at business. But depending on what you want to achieve with the brick, you need to choose the right method and right training so you will surely build a foundation in you to become fluent to perform as a facilitator. Just like my piano teacher chose me Bayer method to learn to play the piano, you need to choose carefully what to learn and who to train you.