Printables Inspired by Irina Gorin’s Workshop

After attending Irina Gorin’s 2015 workshop in Fishers, Indiana, I was inspired to create a series of free printables relating to her ideas and teaching approach. Here they are!

On p. 20 of Irina’s method, Tales of a Musical Journey, there is a neat activity where the student learns to play the “EIEIO” part from the familiar Old McDonald tune by rote, using the three black keys and finger three. Irina usually improvises the rest of the song on the piano or uses the accompanying CD track. I decided to write out the teacher duet part and share it here, in case you, like me, prefer having the sheet music on hand as a reference!

Download it here or at the Printables > Sheet Music page:

  Old McDonald Teacher Duet Part (48.1 KiB, 2,474 hits)

The next printable is a set of poetry cards. Irina likes to use short, easy poetry to teach students to speak clearly and expressively with words — a skill they will later use with music. My thought was that it would be convenient to print these little poems as a set of cards for use both at home and during the lesson.

Download it here or on the Printables > Other Resources page:

  Poetry for Rhythmic Expression (380.7 KiB, 2,538 hits)

In her workshop, Irina mentioned a few (non-musical) activities that can help students improve their focus, concentration, and memory skills. One activity was to give students a page with random single-digit numbers all over it and ask them to circle all of the 2’s (or whatever number you choose). I decided to make a music note version of this sheet because I thought it would be fun to for students to do while in the waiting room area of my studio. I printed it two-sided, laminated the sheet, and plan to pair it with a dry erase marker.

Download it here or on the Printables > Other Resources page:

  Circling Fun Sheets (38.6 KiB, 9,512 hits)

Here is the fourth and last printable. During her workshop, Irina suggested showing students clipart of horseback riders to draw correlations to sitting at the piano. Looking at these silhouettes, the student can consider the support and connection needed through the feet, sit bones, and arms. Your students who have ridden horses before will especially enjoy this activity! 

Download it here or on the Printables > Other Resources page:

  Piano Posture - Horseback Rider Image Cards (358.0 KiB, 1,679 hits)

I’m looking forward to trying out these new resources next week when my Fall teaching schedule resumes. It’s always great to have some fresh ideas and printables to use while kicking off the new school year, isn’t it? Enjoy!

Joy Morin is a piano teacher in northwest Ohio (United States) who enjoys keeping her teaching fresh with new ideas and resources. serves as a journal of her adventures in piano teaching as well as a place to exchange ideas and resources.

Joy has blogged 1131 posts here.

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  1. Posted 21 August 2015 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for more great printables! I especially like the poetry card idea – never thought to try that, but it makes sense that hearing rhythm in words would help students hear rhythm in music! :)

  2. Erica
    Posted 22 August 2015 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

    You are awesome, Joy!

    Thanks for your generosity! Appreciated.

  3. Posted 26 August 2015 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    Dear Joy,
    Thanks for sharing. I really enjoyed meeting you. I can tell your students are so lucky to have you! Good luck on a great year!

  4. Katrina Palsky
    Posted 2 February 2016 at 4:44 pm | Permalink

    Joy, do you use the poetry cards with any particular unit in Piano Adventures? I am thinking level 2A phrasing unit. your opinion and practise? perhaps unit 1 eighth notes for rhythmic dictation.


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