Saturday, July 16, 2011

Go Bug Dad For Anything - Mnemonic Devices

I start teaching staff notation very early.  Even with 5 year olds, it will come in the first lesson -usually.  By the second or third lesson, they are chanting "All Cows Eat Grass."   Here is the chart I teach them, with the exception of the Good Burritos - I teach "Go Bug Dad For Anything," just for laughs:

New tips I learned:

Rhyming and Reading Music

"Notice that if you say it this way, "FACE is for the space" it rhymes.
"Every Good Boy Does Fine is for the lines," rhymes as well.
This will help with the hardest part for students, which is keeping the memory tools for the lines and spaces straighted out in your head. Also keep in mind that there are 4 spaces on each staff and 5 lines. So that helps narrow down the options."   -

 For intermediate students: Once I asked a friend, "How do you remember the keys with sharps and flats?" For the order of sharps, she reminded me of the mnemonic I learned so long ago it was like stumbling upon the old train set in the attic: 

Fat Cat Go Down Allies Eating Bird.

 But she lamented not having a mnemonic for the flats.  Now I know why.  On this music theory site, I just learned that the order of flats is the same sequence but backwards. Nice!


P.S.  I always tell students that Go Bug Dad For Anything is not good advice.

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