Recorder Karate Idea Bank

Colored Note Heads For Reading Help

Submitted by Emily Paladin, Pennsylvania

Idea posted 2004-10-12

For my special education inclusion kids, reading music is a real challenge. (Many of my third graders are on a first grade reading level.) To help them learn notes and fingerings, I write the letter names of the notes in the music, along with a colored circle, different color for each note name. Then, using self-adhesive reinforcement rings that I've colored different colors, I put a different colored ring around each tone hole as we learn the fingering for that note. This works very well for B, A, G, E, and D. Once we get to C and D, it gets a bit tricky. (I've tried edging the second hole with a different/darker color for D, and using a hollow circle to mark music for C.) The colors seem to help them coordinate their fingers (i.e., "Cover holes DOWN to that color.") and gives them more confidence when they have trouble reading notes on the staff.

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