It’s summer and the perfect time for some fun activities that help kids strengthen their weak spots.
I have one young student who is a bit of a mystery. If any of you have experienced something like this, please share your insights below. We’re starting to work on quickly identifying key signatures, but and he says he can’t remember the names of the notes. For two years in a row he has performed very well in my studio’s rapid note identification competition and he is an excellent sight reader.
My thinking is that perhaps he just crams before the competition, so I designed an activity that requires ongoing practice. I’ve called it our Summer Note Name Challenge. Here’s how it works:
To get the reward, students know that they must practice and prepare every week. I aim to give them goals that will make them stretch but are well within reach. For the student I mentioned above, the first goal was for him to name and play at least 8 notes randomly selected from my stack of flashcards within one minute. The next goal is 12.
I’ve also invited my new beginner to participate. His goal is to be able to identify treble C,D,E, with no time requirement. I’m excited to see how this challenge helps my students progress this summer and will keep you posted. You’re welcome to try it out too. I have included the score sheet as a free printable. Just click on the image above to give your students a fun summer challenge.
Here’s one other element that I included in the challenge, that you may or may not want to incorporate: teams. I have some students who are VERY competitive. This is great because they really get into our challenges. But this time I wanted to require them to work with each other instead of against each other. So I’ve paired them up and told them that each partner must complete the challenge in order for them to get their prize. I encourage them to quiz each other and motivate each other. Each individual has their own goals, but they must work as a team to help each other learn the notes.
Go ahead and give this fun note identification activity a try. I hope you’ll come back and leave a comment to update us on how it goes!