Conferences, Printables

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, 2,936 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, 3,016 hits)

Continue reading “Printables Inspired by Irina Gorin’s Workshop”

Games, Group Classes, Printables, seasonal / holiday

January 2013 Piano Party!

Last Saturday, I held another Piano Party for my students.  I had record attendance: 14 students!  Here’s a run-down of what we did:

We introduced ourselves, and shared our favorite Christmas present this year.

Christmas Recital and Name-That Tune game.  Yes, I know Christmas is over!  Because of how busy December often can be, I decided to try scheduling our students-only Christmas recital in early January instead.  Besides, students always play their Christmas pieces through the break anyway, so they might as well do the recital after that!

I took advantage of the fact that my students would be playing familiar tunes, and held a name-that-tune game.  I gave each student the worksheet below, and they had to write down the titles as they heard them.  If they got it correct, they got to color in the star on the right, in order to keep track of how many they guessed correctly.  This was a huge hit!  Even the students who didn’t know very Christmas tunes were able to learn some new ones by the end.

DSC_20130105_124025

You can download the Name-That-Tune worksheet by visiting the Printables > Games page and scrolling down to “Name-That-Tune – Christmas Edition.” Continue reading “January 2013 Piano Party!”

Early Childhood Music, Games

Printable: Black Key Group Sorting Cards

A new free Printable has been added to the Printables page:

These cards are a great manipulative to use with young beginners when you are first introducing them to the keyboard.  Students can use the cards to build a keyboard on the floor, alternating the groups of 2 and 3 black keys.  Or, students can use these at the piano, and lay the cards right on the piano keyboard, matching the groups of black keys appropriately.   I printed a few sets of these cards, laminated them, and put them in zipper bags.  This short activity is great for Piano Readiness Classes.

There are two versions included in the pdf: one with the letter names on the keys, and one without.  To download this free pdf, visit the Printables > Other Resources page and scroll down to the B’s for “Black Key Group Sorting Cards.”  Enjoy!

Early Childhood Music, Group Classes, Resources

Fingerplay Puppets

Thanks to Pinterest, I recently came across a blogger who designed some charming little finger puppets to go along with a few fingerplay songs she enjoys singing with her son!  Her name is Kate, from the picklebums.com blog, and she generously offers each of the printables pictured below for free.  I assembled a set of her beautiful finger puppets for my 4-year-old nephew as a birthday gift last month, and made myself a set, too, to use with my Piano Readiness class.

One of my all-time favorite fingerplays ever is Five Little Speckled Frogs (click for link to Kate’s puppet printable).  I discovered this fingerplay during an Early Childhood Music course I took during graduate school.

Continue reading “Fingerplay Puppets”

Studio Business

Updated: Record of Attendance & Payment Printable

Just a quick post today to those of you’ve who’ve asked if I planned to update the dates of the Record of Attendance & Payment printable for 2012-13.  The answer is YES, and here it is!  Visit the Printables > Studio Business page and scroll down to the R’s.

The “Student Information Form” has also been updated.  Previously, it said “2011-2012,” and I’ve decided to remove the years so that I won’t have to re-upload it here each year.

Hope you are all having a great week!

P.S.: Don’t forget to check out the responses about our current Forum Q&A about keeping teenager students motivated!

Group Classes, Rhythm, Teaching Piano

Introducing…The Color In My Piano Shop!

Greetings!

I have a big announcement today: I have just added a “Shop” page to ColorInMyPiano.com, where I have listed a few items for sale!  Don’t worry…I’ll always share lots of freebies too, but I have some bigger projects that I’d like to make available in the shop.  :)  Right now, I’ve got two items listed:

Rhythm Cards – Level 1.  These cards have simple two- or three- measure rhythm examples on them, perfect for using with beginner students.

Continue reading “Introducing…The Color In My Piano Shop!”

Games, Music Camps, Printables

Musical Olympics Camp – Lesson Plan & Materials

I have finally completed the lesson plans for the Musical Olympics Camp!  This pdf is a FREE download from the Printables > Lesson Plans page.  Let me give another thank you to Sheryl Welles for her great game ideas, and for her permission to include descriptions of those games in the lesson plan.

This pdf also includes a few new printables I created for the Musical Olympics Camp.  I decided to make some of those new printables available for download on the Printables page too, since some of them may easily be used for activities besides the camp.  Here’s a list of all the printables:

Early Childhood Music, Music Theory, Worksheets

Treble & Bass Clef Dot-To-Dot Worksheets

Here’s a new worksheet I just added to the Printables page:

To teach my beginner students how to draw and recognize the treble and bass clef, I created this pair of dot-to-dot worksheets for the treble and bass clefs.  The dots and numbers are nice and big for little eyes to see!

To download, visit the Printables > Worksheets page and scroll down to the T’s for “Treble & Bass Clef Dot-To-Dot Worksheets.”

Enjoy!

  Treble & Bass Clef Dot-To-Dot Worksheets (68.0 KiB, 24,802 hits)

Games, Group Classes, Music Camps, Printables, Teaching Piano

Spell-A-Keyboard Game

This morning with my homeschool music class, I played this game with my students:

As I was lesson planning last night, I was trying to think of a new way to practice the names of the piano keys.  My homeschool music class is mostly a music history class, but we’ve been learning basic music/piano concepts too.  My students already know how to figure them the piano key names by counting from Middle C, but they need more practice to get them memorized.  So I came up with this game, which I called the “Spell-A-Keyboard Game.”

My students loved this game!  I gave them each a set of cards with words containing only A-G (I gave them only the three-letter words for today) and a silent keyboard or paper keyboard, and three glass gems (pennies or buttons work too).  Then I instructed them to “spell” the words from each flashcard by covering the right keys with glass gems.  If you are playing this game with students at the piano, you can require that students spell the letters in order from left to right, but on a silent keyboard there might not be room to do so (as in the example shown in the photo).

This game is a great way to practice the piano key names without it actually feeling like a drill!  My students really enjoyed seeing how quickly they could spell the words and were pretty proud of their work each time.

You can download the “Musical Alphabet Word Flashcards” on the Printables > Games page.  When I created the cards, I tried to pick mostly words that kids would know.  Enjoy!

Update: I just realized that Susan Paradis plays a game very similar to this, except the words are spelled on the staff!  Read more here.

Update: Read about the outdoor version of this game here, where I describe my Musical Olympics Camp.

Update: I also found a way to adapt this game to be used with two floor keyboards indoors, with two teams.  Click here for more info.

Group Classes, Music Theory, Worksheets

Just Added: “Gallery of Music” Symbol Drawing Worksheets

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!  I have a free printable to share today…

This is a set of simple worksheets for having students learn to draw various music symbols.  The worksheets can be used singly or in groups, depending on what concepts your students are currently learning.  I would encourage students to use colorful crayons to draw the symbols.

Here are the symbols covered on each page:

  1. Quarter, half, dotted-quarter, and whole notes.
  2. Quarter, half, dotted-quarter, and whole rests.
  3. Single eighth note, beamed eighth notes, eighth rest, and dotted quarter note.
  4. Treble clef, bass clef, staff, and grand staff.
  5. Barline, double barline, repeat sign, and time signature.
  6. Forte, piano, mezzo forte, and mezzo piano.
  7. Sharp, flat, natural, quarter note with flat.
  8. Slur, tie, staccato, accent.

If you have suggestions for more symbols to include in additional worksheets, let me know!

To download this set of worksheets, visit the Printables > Worksheets page and scroll down to the G’s for “Gallery of Music – Symbol Drawing Worksheets.”

P.S.: I received an email yesterday from the MTNA Collegiate Chapter at Butler University, asking if I’d send a link to the survey they created about online marketing for piano teachers.  They are looking for responses to help them with a session they will be presenting at the MTNA National Conference in NYC next month.  Please take a minute of your time to help them out!   http://tinyurl.com/butlersurvey2012

P.S.S.: Today is the last day to sign up to attend the MTNA National Conference at the early registration discount!  Visit mtna.org to learn more.  Hope to see you in NYC!

Games, Group Classes, Music Camps, Music Theory, Printables

Just Added: Musical Flashcard Sorting game

This is a simple game to play with groups of students that makes note-naming flashcards a bit more interesting.   It involves sorting the flashcards onto alphabet letter signs on the floor, as pictured on the right (the “A” flashcards would go in the blank space on the right side of the page).

The game is pretty flexible, because beforehand you can sort out exactly which flashcards you want to focus on with your students.  This also allows you to control how long you wish the game to continue.

You can also use different flashcards.  With my Homeschool Music Class this week, we used my Piano Key naming flashcards (they came with the MiniMusic set I purchased earlier this year).  With my Piano Readiness Class, we’ve been doing on-staff work so we used regular staff-note-naming flashcards (I use this set from Faber & Faber, but any flashcards will do).

Another tip with this game: if you are using the note-naming flashcards, arrange the musical alphabet signs on the floor in a column, so that A is at the bottom and G is at the top.  I recommend this because this arrangement resembles the staff, where the musical alphabet progresses vertically.  If you are using piano-key-naming flashcards, I would arrange the signs on the floor horizontally, just like the keyboard.

Download the pdf of the alphabet signs and detailed gameplay instructions by visiting the Printables > Games page.  Scroll down to the M’s for “Musical Flashcard Sorting game.”

Early Childhood Music, Games, Group Classes, Music Camps, Music Theory, Printables, Teaching Piano

Just Added: Musical Alphabet Cards

There are others who have shared alphabet card printables similar to what I’m posting today, but I’m adding mine to the mix anyway.  :)  I wanted some that would work well to print onto colored cardstock paper.  Since I don’t have a color printer, this is an easy way I can still get colorful things to use with my students!

I used these cards with my new weekly Homeschool Music Class (just started last week, thanks to Sheryl’s recent post at her Notable Music Studio blog) and with my Piano Readiness Class.  My students LOVED making “musical alphabet snakes” in order to learn how the musical alphabet is different from the regular alphabet.  Included in the pdf is a card which outlines some other possible activities to do using the cards.  These activities work great in both group settings and private lessons.

Do you have some other activities to share that involve alphabet cards?  Share them in the comments!

To Download: visit the Printables > Other Resources page and scroll down to the M’s for Musical Alphabet Cards.

  Musical Alphabet Cards (275.9 KiB, 11,738 hits)