Cecilly has another game that she has said I can post here. This is a great idea to teach sharps and flats and the direction they move. I can’t wait to try it out with my students.
I made some cards to go with this game that I plan to use, and I’m posting them here to share with you. There are 2 pages, one for flats and one for sharps. Cecilly didn’t have a lot of time to proof these cards for me, but she gave me some quick suggestions for the natural cards. I made them rather quickly, so let me know if you see any mistakes. These cards are not on my web site, but you can print them here: alphabet-cards-sharps-and-flats
Here are the directions for this great game, in her own words:
Sharp/Flat race to middle C:
Materials: 2 pawns and 2 sets of music ABC letter cards, one marked
as A# B#, etc., the other as Ab Bb, etc. Shuffle each set separately
and place the Flats set to the right side of the piano, the Sharps
set to the left. Have the student choose one set with you having the
other. Sit one your respective side of the bench as your set.
To play, hold card sets face down and place pawns on the highest &
lowest C’s on the piano. Players take turns turning over the top
card from their set and moving their pawn to the nearest key
corresponding with the letter ALWAYS in the direction of middle C and
never going back toward the player’s end of the piano. After all
cards are played, the player who ends up closest to mid. C is the
winner. Switch sides.
The idea is to not only become familiar with identifying the keys as
flats/sharps, but to become more aware (with play always directed
toward center) that flats move down and sharps move up. Get it?? 😉
You can also mark some of the letters with a natural sign, just to
mix things up a bit and keep ’em on their toes (to see if they really
understand that naturals are always white keys)!!
I played the game on a flat paper floor keyboard with each pawn on
the last white key at each end. They were both 18 white keys away
from mid. C. I also placed a little piece of colored highlighter tape
on the mid. C key to make it more obvious what we were both moving
toward. So if you use the actual piano, just count 18 keys away from
mid. C. That distance made the game go quickly and we played “best
out of 3”. I won 2 of the games so the kids definitely want a
rematch next week. Fun fun.