Recorder Karate Idea Bank

Note Detective - Drilling Note Names For Recorder Study

Submitted by Gretchen Taylor, Illinois

Idea posted 2003-10-09

I just finished planning my first recorder sessions for my middlers filled with lots of review to get them back in the swing of things. This year, taking from someone's mention of the importance of drilling the note names, I am planning on employing some kind of note identification activity into every session. Some of the standard activities I've already used successfully are:

1. Basic pencil/paper "name the note" worksheets
2. Spelling tests where I hold up a card with a word on it (i.e. CAGE), which they must spell on staff paper using the corresponding notes.
3. Recorder note BINGO
4. Swat the note
5. Flash card drills (I show a card with a short melodic pattern shown on a staff and the class finger plays the pattern while saying the note names, then plays the notes.)
6. Skittles Staff game
7. Fingerboard dictation

Well, I've come up with another idea this year I'm calling Note Detective. With a piece displayed on the overhead projector, I will call out a measure or pair of measures. The students must locate the measure(s) and write the note names on paper in the order they appear in that measure. So, an answer might look like this on someone's paper: 1. m. 18-9: C A G A E. This will help them to locate measures and then identify the notes within the context of a piece. Of course to check, I'll have them play the measure together. It should be easy to tell when someone's wrong.

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