Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Spooky Halloween Classical Sampler - Level 2 Elementary

Classical music is full of spooky themes that children love!  A few weeks before Halloween, I throw out my lasso and rope in the practice slackers with some festive surprises.  If my students have a keyboard in their home, I point them to all their scary organ sounds.  I treasure the smiles on their faces when I crank up Bach's Toccata and Fugue with an organ sound!   

I arranged this medley as a classical sampler for the level 2 student.  Even a level 1 student may be taught these short themes by rote (I spell out the letter names and finger numbers on the back of their practice sheets as a back-up for memory failure). I included "spooky" themes by Bach, Chopin, and Grieg.  I put them all in A minor to minimize accidentals and utilize a familiar level 2 hand position.  If they decide they like what they hear, we can procure a more lengthy version later (often, they decide they want to play the whole song).  Add as many repeats as you like, and experiment with sounds on your keyboard!  SO FUN!!!

Halloween Piano Music, Level 2 - Jennifer Warren-Baker,

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Saturday, October 8, 2016

Clocks (Level 2): Motivate with this Popular Piece by Colplay!

The older student in a practice slump.  We all know the type.  This is the kid who can be re-ignited when the sensitive piano teacher dishes up Coldplay.  This is a very keyboard-centric pop song.  The keyboard part is recognizable to -- I'd say, 95% of Americans, regardless of age.

I like to keep my arrangements at this level short and sweet (note:  I left out the bridge).  All kids need to get going again is a recognizable tune that they can relate to (the kind they would be willing to blast in their earbuds).    

Also....have the students write in the names of the chords.  It's a good theory exercise.