KinderBach: Simply Discover Piano is the free (or lite) version. The first few lessons are free with the remaining available through in-app purchases. Try this version before purchasing the full version.
Classroom KinderBach: School Version is the full version. It does not contain in-app purchases as the app contains all of the lessons for one price. This is the version we will be focusing on for our review.
Both are universal apps designed for kids ages 3-7 learning the piano. They can be used in a classroom or home environment. Karri Gregor, Professional Musician and Artist, guides children through activities and games that will enable them to learn intervals, notes, rhythm and patterns. It is obvious that Ms. Gregor enjoys working with children. She is energetic and presents the material in a way that makes it easy for kids to comprehend.
Video lessons and other activities designed with the objective of making learning the piano fun are the main focus of the app. The short videos include Karri and KinderBach cartoon characters, such as Frisco and Dodi. An intro video, describing the objective of the lesson, is the first video of each lesson.
Included in the app are three levels, each level contains 10 lessons, each lesson contains five videos. In addition to the lessons, six mini games are included. The games re-enforce what was taught in the lessons.
Some preparation is required on your part before handing the app off to the kids. Videos are not downloaded along with the initial download of the app. They are downloaded the first time they are played. You will want to download the lesson videos ahead of time or your child may become frustrated waiting for not only the video to load but for you to gather the necessary items for the activities.
Some activities require you to print coloring or activity pages. If you do not own an iPad compatible printer, the pages can be downloaded from the KinderBach web site for a fee. Crayons, scissors, glue and items to make a rhythm instrument are just a few of the items you will need to gather prior to your kids getting started. Ms. Gregor has the kids doing hands-on (or feet in some instances) learning, not just sitting and watching videos.
I was able to use the in-app keyboard provided on the iPad for many of the lessons. This was not true on the smaller screen of the iPod. My son’s smaller fingers were not able to use the keyboard on the iPod either. A piano or keyboard would be beneficial.
The full version does not contain in-app purchases or social media buttons; however, it does include a couple of external links that when touched will take your kids out of the app. Ideally, all external links would be moved to a “Parents only” type menu and protected so as not to distract kids from the main purpose of the app. This includes the Help button which takes you to the KinderBach web site.
The price of the full version may be a bit of a sticker shock. I have to agree that when I first saw the price I did a little gasp of my own. It really is not so bad when you stop to consider all of the material included; less than $1.00 per lesson, plus there are the games and printable sheets (if you own a compatible iPad printer).
This is not an app that you are just going to hand off to the kids. There is a time commitment from you, too.
For this to be considered a five-star app, a couple of changes need to be made. The external links need to be placed in one location and protected; especially considering the targeted audience of the app is 3-7 year-olds. Users without iPad-compatible printers need to have free access to the program materials.
Classroom KinderBach: School Version is the full version of the KinderBach: Simply Discover Piano. Designed for kids ages 3-7, it is fun and educational video lessons and hands-on activities. If you are serious about your child’s music education, don’t let the price scare you.
- Improves all forms of musical skills including the Piano itself.
- No subscription required, once you purchase a lesson it is yours for good.
- Keyboard included in the app for use during the video lessons.
- Hours of content for children in 3 Levels, each containing 10 lessons, a school year of music education.
- 150 videos and PDF coloring pages allow children to work directly with Karri Gregor to learn concepts and skills.
- Six Mini-Games help children learn more advanced concepts.
Regular Price: $26.99