Do you have beginning piano students who only play loud? Or soft? Or slow? Or fast?
Some students get stuck in a rut and it can be difficult to break these habits and to encourage them to listen as they play. But we’re sharing a quick little game today that will have your beginning piano students learning to quickly adjust how they play… all the while having a blast!
How To Play “Sounds Like…”
To play this game you’ll need this printable. Then…
- Cut out the animal squares and paste them on the sides of a cubed tissue box.
- With your piano students, discuss how these pictures could represent sounds on the piano: Snail = Slow, Sheep = Soft, Bunny = Fast, Elephant = Loud.
- Place the tissue box on the piano with an animal square facing your piano students.
- Instruct your piano students to begin playing their piece in the style of that animal.
- While your students are playing, rotate the tissue box to reveal a different animal.
- Instruct your students to change their playing style (on the fly) as the tissue box is rotated.
Your piano students will learn to quickly adjust their tempo and hand weight to match the “Sounds Like” image. And, in the future… if the “constantly loud” piano playing re-emerges from a student… you can quietly turn the “Sounds Like” box to the bunny side as a gentle and memorable reminder 🙂
Other Fun You Can Have With “Sounds Like”
There are many extensions to this activity. Here are our 3 favorites:
1. To add a bit of fun to scale practice, turn the box around for each scale (or even mid-scale) to adjust how your students should play.
2. Brainstorm other ways you can adjust sound on the piano, and the pictures that could represent these changes in sound. Then, send your students home to create their own four “Sounds Like” images.
3. To incorporate some ear training, give the box to your students. As you play small examples, your students can turn the box to match what they hear. For example, if you are playing a piece that is fast, your students would turn the box so that the bunny is showing.
Game-based learning is one of the most efficient ways to introduce, reinforce and explain concepts in a piano lesson. If you’re excited about incorporating games into your lessons and are looking for the most exciting and kid-approved games check out www.pianogameclub.com and get 4 games every month for just $8!