Students must have a piano or a high quality keyboard at home to practise on.  No matter how excellent the teaching, student progress will be extremely slow, if not at a standstill, without practising between lessons.  

Both acoustic pianos and digital keyboards have their advantages.  Digital keyboards allow students to experiment with other types of sounds, record themselves, and use headphones when they do not want to disturb other people in the home.  They do not require tuning and can be portable.  There are many keyboards on the market that are excellent electronic replicas of a piano’s sound.  However, my preference is that students have an acoustic piano since high end keyboards just do not yet have the complete feel and touch sensitivity of an acoustic piano.  When I have played top quality keyboards, I have found that I cannot do as much with a piece of music as I can when I am playing the same piece on an acoustic piano.  Ideally, having access to both a digital keyboard and an acoustic piano would be beneficial but this is a much more expensive option.

If you feel that a digital keyboard would be the best option for you and your family, be sure that your keyboard is a high quality digital 88-note touch-sensitive keyboard with weighted keys.   Look for keyboards with “graded hammer-action,” or “scaled hammer-action,” which take the realistic feel a step further by giving the bass octaves a heavier touch than treble notes.  Please avoid inexpensive keyboards that lack touch sensitivity as students will not develop finger strength or artistry on such keyboards.

If you own an acoustic piano, it should be tuned at a minimum every year and ideally, twice per year as the household heating is turned on or off.