Here are a couple snapshots from my studio this week as my students worked on their Key Signature – Scale Matchup Worksheet.
I had them all do the Major Sharp worksheet in the studio under my supervision, and then gave them the Major Flat worksheet to do on their own and bring back completed next week.
Even my young students easily understood the concept of matching the scale with the key signature that had the corresponding sharps. Interestingly, the only student who had trouble with the worksheet is an older beginning piano student who is in a band program at school. His teacher had told him to identify the key by going up from the last sharp in the key signature. Since he didn’t understand that he should just go up a half step, he got several wrong. When I showed him that all he had to do was identify the name of the scale and then transfer that to the name of the key, he quickly identified the correct scale and key names.
I just keep drilling into my students the concept that the key signature indicates what scale a particular piece is built on. The goal is not just to memorize the key names (although I hope they do that, too!), I want them to really understand the theory behind them. We’ll see how it goes by the end of this emphasis! For next week, I’m planning to use the minor scale – key signature worksheets. Then, after that we’ll move onto a different Fresh and Fun! idea. Remember, if you have an idea for a short activity that can be done at the beginning of the lesson to reinforce the concept of key signatures, either leave it in the comments below or send me an e-mail.