Over the years of teaching, one of my many favorite things about teaching piano is showing students how to play chords, even at the first lesson. Of course it depends on the student, yet once students start learning to play songs with chords, they will be hocked. I will say that I use chord charts from ultimateguitar.com. Here are three of my favorites I like to teach, using chord charts. There are others, yet these seem to get students excited and motivated. Before I go any further, I should explain that I teach inversions of the chords, so it's easier to move their hand to the closest chord inversion. I show them the root, 1st and 2nd inversions to explain the different sounds these chords produces.
The first song is Proud Mary, performed by Tina Tuner. The song has 3 chords, yet I usually skip the Bm chord and only show the students how to play D and A chords. The song is mostly D chords, which is great to encourage students to be successful. I usually have them play whole notes with the chord in their right hand and once they are able to add the root in the left, they get more depth in their playing. After they are confident, I pull up a YouTube of the song and have them play the chords. I really love when their eyes beam when they are playing chords to a song using chord charts.
The second is Alyisa Keys song Fallen, which uses Em and Bm. Again using inversions make it easier for students to play the song. You will have to explain to the students about key signatures, as it's in 6/8. Yet the back and forth of these two chords will sound great for students learning how to play chords.
The last song I use is Achy Breaky Heart by Billy Ray Cyrus. Judge me. Yet people know the song and certainly enjoy learning C and G chords. Plus once they start playing chords in the right hand and a root in the left, students will feel confident to be able to play more chords.
What are some of your favorite songs to teach with chord charts? When do you start teaching chord charts? Thanks for your support. Blessings.