Bats and Cats Note Game
Wow, this graphic really is over the top! I illustrated it this way so I could show the “Card of Doom” in Pinterest. We’ve been playing the game in my studio, and my students love the Card of Doom, especially since the teacher is usually the one who draws it! Honestly, it’s good that I love for my students to win because somehow they usually do!
We have really enjoyed this game. Even beginning students who have not learned to read notes can play by using a staff chart such as Halloween Notes on a Staff. If your students are getting ready for a theory exam, this is a great review for that, too.
Included in this set are 3 pages of notes on staves, one page of fun instruction cards to mix up with the note cards, a game board, and an optional colorful back for your cards, which make them look more professional. Be sure to set your printer to landscape orientation. Yes, this uses a lot of ink, but you only have to print it once. If you want it too look really good, use photo paper and laminate it. [If you don't know how to omit the optional back to the cards, check out my FAQ.]
This game can be played with students or teacher and student. The players take turns drawing cards and moving to the correct alphabet name. Mix up the staff cards with the instruction cards. The game is over when a player draws any note card after the last D. It is such a quick game you can play more than once.
- To reinforce or learn note names on the staff
- To learn the word “octave”
- To play a fast Halloween board game
- Kindergarten to grade 4 or 5
I know some of you would like keyboard cards so you can play this with beginners. Email me and I’ll send a PDF copy to you. But give me a few days, because I don’t have them made yet. I didn’t think to add them to this set because I only have one beginner, and he knows the keys now. So we used the Halloween Notes on a Staff sheet, which he filled out himself, and I was surprised to see him learn a few note names as he played.
Rhythm Flash Cards
These rhythm flash cards are about the size of a deck of playing cards. They are small enough for students to hold in their hands to play card games. A variety of levels are included, from beginning to late intermediate, whole notes to dotted eighths and sixteenths.
There are 6 pages of flash cards in this printable. The last page is a colorful graphic designed for the back of the cards so they are more fun. You can print only the pages of the cards you need. You will have to reinsert the graphic for the back of the cards into your printer. If you are not sure how to do this, look at the FAQ on this blog. Scroll down until you see “How to Print On Both Sides of Flash Cards.”
To keep the pattern for the back of the cards lined up evenly and to look nice, I didn’t make a cutting line all the way across the page. Instead, there is a thin white line to cut on.
If you are not going to print the colorful graphic for the back, take a ruler and connect the dotted lines on the front (the black and white side) of the cards before you cut them out.
For my young children, I made two sets of the first page (the easy patterns) so we could play “Go Fish”. I also played matching the cards with them, because matching these patterns is often a challenge for young beginning students. They also love to play the patterns on rhythm instruments.
With older students, we simply tap some cards at the end of lessons or string them together to make a phrase and tap. Sometimes I put a few of the cards on a table and one person taps while the other guesses the correct pattern.
These cards are very useful as a review for the bonus question of the Texas theory test. They are also helpful when a student is first learning eighth notes.
I am certainly open to suggestions on more ways to use these. If you have a good game or idea, please leave a comment here to share with others!
The Incredible Whole Rest
Do your students think that a whole rest always gets 4 beats? If so, they probably get confused when they are asked to add a rest for the entire measure in 3/4 time and not use dotted rests! According to the Oxford Concise Dictionary of Music, “The whole-note rest is used as a whole measure rest, irrespective of the actual time-value of the measure.”
I print out my NoteBoy posters on cardstock and laminate them. Then I place them on the sofa table in my studio for students to read and chuckle before their lesson. Humor has a way of sticking to your memory!
Teachers always ask me who is the note with the red cape and mask who always has a little comment to make. He is Mighty Dot, the super hero who wears black and flies to notes to make them longer. He’s a powerful guy. In my mind he has an accent kind of like Zorro, and he is an expert in rhythm and all things theory related!
If you are not familiar with my NoteBoy posters, check them out. There are NoteBoy posters on all kinds of music theory, such as lead sheet, ledger lines, and chord inversions, and they are all my gift to your music students. My students love them! Let me know if yours do, too!
I Can Count Rhythm
Today I am posting the second worksheet in my “I Can” series for young beginners. My last post was I Can Write the Music Alphabet. The one I am posting today reviews rhythm. I think that it is also big enough to use on the iPad.
As with all of my worksheets, this is free for personal use. In order to print, click on the picture or the link below the picture. That will take you to another page, where you will select “download”.
I am working on a worksheet like this for rests, so hold on and I’ll post it this week. Meanwhile, don’t forget these fun rhythm games for the younger set: Quarter Note Hunt, Fish Rhythm Matching Cards, Rhythm Round About, and Counting Up the Mountain. Average age beginners will learn rhythm values quickly with the black ink Rhythm Memory Game.
If you use all of these games with your beginning students, they will probably learn rhythm note values very easily!