Music with Ease > Piano Practice Aids: Two Fun Piano or Keyboard Games to Improve Your Child's Piano Playing Skills
Piano Practice Aids: Two Fun Piano or Keyboard Games to Improve Your Child's Piano Playing Skills
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Looking for free beginner piano lessons for kids, to help them play more smoothly and skillfully? Here are two fun keyboard games that children really love to play!
Skillful piano playing requires great flexibility in the hands. Your child needs to be able to stretch all the fingers smoothly to reach non-adjoining notes.
Your child also needs to practice good hand positions for confident playing:
-- There should be a nice gentle downward curve from your child's shoulders, through the arms to the hands;
-- The wrists should be held a little higher than the hands;
-- Notes should be played by the tips, not the sides, of the little fingers. If done correctly, the backs of the hands should be level, not sloping down towards the little fingers. Ask your child to imagine that there is a ten cent coin balanced on each hand. Don't let the coins fall off!
-- The fingers should be gently curled. Ask your child to imagine that each hand is a little round igloo. When the thumb is not being used, it should rest slightly under the palm, just as if the thumb is a little eskimo ducking inside the door of his igloo!
Try the following fun keyboard games to help your child develop all of these essential skills.
Note: Play the notes with both hands at once. I have only written out the notes below for the right hand but the left hand plays the same notes one octave below the right hand.
First Keyboard Game: Beginner Level
Begin with the right hand thumb (first finger) on Middle C and the little finger of the left hand on the C that is one octave below Middle C.
Use the five fingers of the right hand in sequence to play the first five notes going from Middle C up to G and then back down to Middle C:
C D E F G F E D C
Then start one note higher and play the same pattern:
D E F G A G F E D
Continue in the same way, starting one note higher each time until the final set that starts one octave above Middle C:
C D E F G F E D C
Second Keyboard Game: Advanced Level
Jump the Second Note!
Jump the second note of the sequence on the way up but don't jump any notes on the way back. You will end up one note higher than where you started:
C E F G A G F E D
You are already on D now, so continue directly into the second set without stopping:
... F G A B A G F E
Continue with the same pattern until you reach the final set starting on the B above Middle C:
B D E F G F E D C
This set ends one octave above Middle C.
Jump the Third Note!
Follow the same patterns but this time jump the third note on the way up:
C D F G A G F E D etc
Jump the Fourth Note!
Follow the same patterns but this time jump the fourth note on the way up:
C D E G A G F E D etc
Jump the Fifth Note!
Follow the same patterns but this time jump the fifth note on the way up:
C D E F A G F E D etc
See how smoothly your child can play this mind bending exercise! It takes quite a bit of concentration and is great fun to master.
For extra challenge, try reversing all the sequences in this game, starting with the little finger of the right hand on the G that is twelve notes above Middle C and playing the notes in each set downwards and then back up. For example, for the Jump the First Note game, start with:
G E D C B C D E F
About the Author:
Betty Wagner of Music With Ease has been teaching music for over 30 years. Her unique multimedia ebooks make learning to play the piano fun, easy and surprisingly affordable. Help your child learn to read music notes with the help of quirky cartoon characters, embedded sound clips and flash cards. Or help them master their beginner piano scales the simplest way ever, with scale charts, fingering tips and memory aids. And discover how to read those difficult ledger notes, above and below the staves, using the Reading Ledger Line Notes With Ease multimedia ebook. Just two simple poems are the key to reading any ledger note on the entire keyboard! For more information, visit: /read-ledger-line notes.html
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