St Patrick’s Day Composing
In my never-ending quest to change everything on my website to portrait orientation, I have updated these two St. Patrick’s Day composing pages and put them together into one PDF file. It’s time-consuming, which is why it is taking me so long!
The first page is for composing on the staff. I wrote a little poem and put the rhythm above the staff. The student can write a melody with bass notes, or just the melody.
The pre-reading page has the rhythm written above shamrocks, and they write the finger numbers of their melody on the shamrocks.
I always suggest to my students to start and end on the same note if they want a singable melody and I suggest D using only white keys for an Irish sounding melody. It is always amazing to me that some students have an innate ability to come up with a good melody! Other students write notes willy-nilly here and there and it sounds rather like me composing 12-tone music for a theory class. 🙂
Some students want to compose melody and accompaniment, so I suggest they start with fifths in the left hand and use D minor and C parallel fifths. If they get carried away and want to expand their composition, check out the staff paper I’ve posted that has a braced grand staff, measures, and bar lines. It’s one of the pages in this bundle. Staff Paper Variety Pack
If you don’t know how to print only one page in a PDF bundle, there is a tutorial in my FAQ.
Shamrock Keyboard Race
This is a game I made up to learn piano keys. I got the idea from my friend Cecilly who told me about a similar game to learn sharps and flats. I changed it around for learning piano keys, made some cards, and it kind of took on a life of its own! It has become a staple for piano teachers all around the world.
Keyboard Race is played on the piano keys. It’s fast and it works! As a matter of fact, I like it so much that I’ve made a lot of different variations for each season and even baseball cards! I’ve even made cards with an H instead of a B for German teachers. Check out the links at the bottom of this page.
Since these cards are not particularly cutesy, they are good for older beginners.
- To quickly identify piano keys
- To identify middle C
- Optional: To identify B flat and F sharp
- Piano keyboard
- Keyboard Race Cards, one color for each player
- Two tokens • Collectable erasers will not damage your keyboard and I have an extensive collection of cute erasers.
- This is a two-player game, usually the teacher and student.
- The teacher sits on the right side and the students sits on the left side of the piano bench, at each end of the piano.
- Each player has one set of cards and one token, and places the their cards on the piano book rack. Shuffle the cards well.
- The first player turns a card and moves his token to that piano key, the closest to his end of the piano. The second player does the same.
- Play continues with each player drawing a card and moving his token toward the middle of the keyboard.
- The game is over when one player passes the middle of the keyboard. I like to use middle C with my young students.
- Note: The player on the right side (treble end) usually loses, so that’s where I sit. Games are more fun for students if they win.
Why I like this game
- My students love it and want to play it over and over.
- It is the fastest and most fun way to learn keyboard names.
Here are links to the game using different cards:
Baseball Keyboard Race
Pumpkin or Leaves Keyboard Race
Snowflake Keyboard Race
Reindeer and Elves Keyboard Race
German Shamrock Keyboard Race
If any of these links don’t work in the future, use the search engine on the right. A Google search will produce results, also.
Shamrock Notes Bundle
Today I am posting another printable but I have added some things. You can use these as printables or on your iPad. The blank staff can be colored and used to learn how to draw clefs and notes. Students can color the rainbow at the top. All of these work equally well on an iPad or other tablet.
The original version of Shamrock Notes had all the notes in a row going up the staves. But some students found that too easy so I’ve added a staff with notes in random order.
If you’ve been following me for a while, you know that I’ve made staves like this for almost all of the special days. Children need a lot of review! Save these to your computer and only print out what you need.
Clover Full Of Notes
I have been trying to update my old material and I’m working on St. Patrick’s Day material this week.
I’ve updated the text on this rhythm worksheet to make it more iPad friendly. Included is a black and white version for teachers who don’t want to print in color.
Students complete the worksheet by drawing half notes in the first ring around the whole note in the center, then quarter notes in the middle leaves, and eighth notes on the outside leaves.
A few years ago I wrote a tutorial about how open a worksheet on your iPad or Android. MetaMoji (also known as Note Anytime) can also be used on other tablets as well as an iPad. https://susanparadis.com/metamoji-note-an-app-for-writing-on-the-ipad-and-other-tablets/
Notability is a good app for the iPad, and it works almost the same as MetaMoji.