The easiest and most logical way to introduce a new student to the piano is by learning the keyboard. While note reading and recognition on the staff and keyboard are quite a big challenge, it should be postponed until the second/third lesson. Getting to know the white and black keys pattern could be a great way to start actually playing the piano.
DO you need activities for your 4 years old pianist? Are you looking for some fun elements for the first piano lessons? Well, Here are what I use with my students:
Observe the obvious/Learn keyboard layout
At a foresight, Piano is such a simple instrument. White and black keys grouped together. If the white keys are just a bunch of keys. Then the black keys are congregated in groups of two and three. Which give us a great opportunity to start exercising and playing rote pieces using the black keys as a focal point.
Take the first shot
- Count the groupings of two black keys then the groupings of three black keys.
- Play the black key pairs going up. Then all groups of three black keys going down.
- When playing, press one set of two black keys together and one group of three black key one by one.
- Play “Ball on the stairs” – starting from the right play all black keys down to the left with your RH (LH) and finger #3 imagining a ball jumping down the stairs
Use Props for the very young students
Explaining the pattern to the 4-5-year-olds can be fun if you use a reasonable amount of hands-on material.
- Decorate the piano. This exercise is fun for the youngers. Prepare 7 bouncy balls and 7 rubber caterpillars and decorate a group of two black keys with balls and group of three black keys with caterpillars.
Off bench activities
- Make a snake – using cards of two and three black keys make a snake alternating between the groups. To augment the exercise, you can ask the student to close their eyes and make 1 or 2 mistakes by misplacing the group of keys.
- “Chinese Lanterns” – play two and three black keys going up and down
- Using a black keys cards, ask the student to chose one card and play the note shown on the card. Also, you can amplify the exercise by encouraging them to play given key with RH or LH hand with a specific finger.
Where to Find
You can find Printable Flash Cards here. Printing in the Actual size is recommended for the better result. If you want to use this cards for a long time please, visit our post Piano Studio Office Helpers.
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