Addi and Holly love playing games at their lesson, so this week we started with a fun mystery note game. Each of them chose a colored game piece and placed it on the designated starting key on their piano. I sat in my chair and turned around backwards. Then I would call out instructions like, “up a 3rd, down a 4th, down a 2nd, down a 5th, etc.” and they had to move their piece accordingly. After five or six directives I would ask, “What’s the mystery note?” They would both call out the name of the note they were on and if they were correct, they won! We did this several times and they both did really well!
Ryan just started playing the trumpet this year, so I asked him to bring it in some week and play it for me. I had him tell me what each part of the instrument is called and show me how it works, then he played a scale and a couple of short songs on it. I am impressed at how quickly he is picking it up!
For Melodie’s lesson this week, I pulled out the Rhythm Chart. She is just getting into the dotted quarter-eighth note pattern, so we started by counting while playing the rhythm sticks through each rhythm square. Then we played a game where I played two rhythm patterns in a row and she had to identify the numbers of the squares that I played. Once she got it correct, she had to play two patterns and I had to identify which ones she played. It proved to be more challenging for her to identify two in a row than I anticipated, so I should have started with just one at a time. I’ll know better next time!
Thursday night, eighteen students and I crowded into the studio for our first group event of the year. In accordance with our theme, I’ve dubbed the group events, “Private Eye Workshops.” Our topic for this event was Instruments of the Symphony Orchestra. We started the evening with me playing excerpts from the Instruments of the Orchestra CD set (awesome resource, by the way!) and the students identifying which family of instruments was playing. Then I interspersed a Case of the Missing Instrument game with student performances. We concluded the evening with me giving the students the code to crack the clue and identify the Mystery Word for this session. (I know some of this is probably a little unclear since it pertains to the studio practice incentive theme I’m doing this year, but hopefully by the end of the year I’ll have all the kinks worked out and will be able to make it available along with my other practice incentives!)
I did a little bit of video recording this week, so I’m hoping to get some of those loaded soon too!