>My students are being told at school that the piano (manual) is a
>presently being classified as a string instrument rather than what I always
>was taught, piano is a precussion instrument because the hammers hit the
>strings. I am wondering if the new nomenclature comes because strings are
>a greater part of the structure of the instrument. Why was it classified
>as a percussion instrument before?
Because the strings are struck by hammers, like the gong and the chimes.
The harpsichord, however, has traditionally been considered a stringed
instrument because the strings are plucked. The pipe organ is, of course,
a wind instrument, while the electric organ and various synthesizers are
electronic instruments. All are keyboard instruments.