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.
Animal Keyboard Matching Cards
I had so many requests for this keyboard version of the Alphabet Animal Clothespin Matching Cards. I think it’s because most of us get new students in the fall, and one of the first things we want to teach them is the name of the piano keys. When I give workshops, I list about 10 ways to quickly teach keyboard names. Now I have another activity to add to my arsenal!
You can try this with all elementary ages. However, sometimes a graphic representation of a keyboard is too abstract for preschool children. You will have to guide them more and sit at the piano to help them out. Children also forget from week to week. This activity is something teachers and parents can do to reinforce what students learn at the lesson. I also think it’s a great way to evaluate how well they have learned the keyboard.
To print, click the caption under the picture. That will take you to my website, where you can download this PDF.
- To quickly identify the names of the keys on the piano keyboard
- To work on eye-hand coordination
- To strengthen the fingers
- To enjoy a hands-on activity
- Regular size clothespins
- Animal Keyboard Clothespin Matching Cards, printed on card stock and laminated or covered in clear vinyl, and cut out
- This activity is for one student, but can be modified for more than one
- The teacher gives the student the cards and a supply of clothespins
- The object is to attach the clothes pin on the correct name of the piano key
Why I like this game
- It does not require a lot of preparation
- It is fast and can be played in a few minutes
- It helps to strengthen the fingers a little
Search and Find G
Here is the latest Search and Find Game that I hope you will find helpful for your student. Today’s game features the giraffe that I drew for the G song. In case you’re wondering where the G song is, I wrote one, I really did! Then I tried it out with my students and I didn’t like it. For several reasons which you are probably not interested in, I didn’t like it. So I re-wrote it and I’m trying it out with a student today. If it works, I’ll post it, hopefully tomorrow! My students have also been testing another simple activity to help learn notes which I hope to post soon.
This is the fifth game in a series of “Search and Find” games. I have already posted Search and Find Middle C, Search and Find D, Search and Find E, and Search and Find F. Rather than post the directions and objectives again, new readers can go here for Search and Find C and read up on how to play this game. Of course, they can also be used as printable fun sheets.
On my Facebook page, Whitney posted this about how she uses printables.
Most “funsheets” are in page protectors, so they wipe off easily. I have several huge binders that I store them in– organized by topic and/or season. They’re also a great way to keep waiting students busy AND drill important things at the same time.
Thank you so much for the suggestion Whitney. It just so happens that big box stores and office supply stores are starting their back to school sales, so now is a good time to think about buying binders and page dividers. I love the idea to organize them by seasons as well as topic.
Search and Find E
This is the third in a series of “Search and Find” games. A few days ago I posted Search and Find Middle C and Search and Find D. Today’s game is E, featuring an elephant who loves to eat anything yummy.
This game is for young beginners who are just starting to learn notes on the staff. I made this game to go along with the song Elephants Are Eating (which has more than one note, thankfully!) To play the game, give the student some bingo tokens, such as the one that go with a magnetic bingo chips wand. I am working on a song for G and the rest of the Search and Find Games. I’ll post them in the next week or so as I get them ready and try them out with my students. If you enjoy my blog and use Facebook, please “like” my page, Susan Paradis’ Piano Teaching Resources. Thanks!
- Search and Find E (free printable from my website)
- Magnetic bingo chips to use with a magnetic wand, or other game tokens you have on hand
- Print the game board
- Place bingo chips next to the game board
- Instruct the student to find and cover all the E’s
Directions for other ways to use the game
- Play using a timer and make it a game to see how fast the student can cover the D’s.
- Laminate the game board or place into a sheet protector and let the students circle the E’s with a dry erase marker.
- Print a copy for the student’s binder and ask the student to circle all the E’s with their favorite color crayon.
- Hand the student note flash cards (such as the Fly Flash Cards) one at time. If the card is a E, they cover it with a bingo chip. After they see the card, they give it back so you will have enough E’s to cover them all.
- To learn how to visually identify middle E on the staff
- To improve fine motor skills in the fingers by picking up the small game tokens
- Preschool and early elementary ages
Chasing the Turkey
After we finish taking the state theory test, I give my students a theory break. I don’t assign formal theory work to complete at home and bring back. This makes everyone happy, including me, because by now we’re all kind of “theory weary.” But there is the problem of forgetting everything we carefully learned. So I like to play theory games to keep everything fresh in my students’ minds. They don’t mind reviewing theory in a game. In fact, they like it!
If you’re looking for a Thanksgiving game, I hope your students love this one as much as my students did. I don’t know if it was the farmer with his ax, using dice, or if it was the fact that they all beat me. (I must be the most unlucky person in the world!) This game meets my criteria for a music lesson game. It is fast and over quickly, so it doesn’t take much lesson time.
There are several levels of cards included in this printable. Look at all seven pages in this PDF, and only print what you need. If you don’t know how to do that, see my last post for instructions. The last page in this set is an optional back to the cards, but I didn’t use it!
The nice thing about this game board is that you don’t have to print out the cards I made. I also played this game using note flash cards to review note names, and for beginners, keyboard flash cards. If you want to review all the major and minor key signatures, check out my key signature flash cards on my website.
- To review previously learned musical symbols, intervals, key signatures, and vocabulary.
- To enjoy a seasonal game.
- Grades 1-5, using the appropriate cards for the concepts students have learned.
- Game board.
- Cards with musical symbols and terms, or use your own cards.
- One die.
- Tokens. (I used milk carton tops.)
- The game can be played with two or more players
- Print the game board and cut out the cards or use your own cards.
- Each player puts his token on the game board. The first player draws a card and answers the question.
- Then he rolls the die and moves the number of spaces on the die. If he lands on a circle with instructions, he follows the instructions, such as taking a short cut, or moving back to Start.
- The game continues in the same way with the other players.
- The first player to reach Safe is the winner.
- Optional: Write the instructions on the back of the game board for future use.
Why I like this game
- My students loved it and didn’t want to stop playing.
- It really helped them remember their theory vocabulary and terms.
- By using flash cards I already have, I can modify the game for all ages.