In any piano lesson setting, be it individual or group, it’s important to have some activities where your students are up, moving and active. And with summer on the horizon and many teachers conducting piano camps, we thought many of you might really appreciate another group piano lesson game… that does indeed get your students off the bench!
Action-infused “brain breaks” are important for maintaining focus and motivation… but they can also be a great opportunity to progress a lesson; brain breaks don’t need to be a complete departure from learning.
The game we’re sharing with you today will strengthen note-reading and keyboard awareness skills. It’s easy (or is it “keyzie”?!) to implement and it’s an absolute hoot!
How to Play Keyzie Relay
Keyzie Relay uses a pack of note-reading flash cards (no doubt you have a pack kicking around somewhere). From the pack, you can choose treble or bass clef notes, or use a mixture of both.
Before the game begins, divide your group of students into 2 teams and have them stand in two lines. Place your piano bench in front of the two piano student lines. This serves as a barrier, but also as a flat surface on which the game will be played. Split your flash card deck into two equal piles and place these piles face down on the bench (use flash cards that don’t have the answer on the back!).
How to Play:
On the word “Go!”, the first student in each line flips over the flash card from their team’s deck, names the note and then runs to the piano to play the corresponding key. Then, she tags the next student on the shoulder and races to the back of the line. The tag on the shoulder indicates to the next student that he can flip over the card in the pile and repeat the process.
Your role as the teacher is to stand at the piano and ensure “quality control”. If a key is incorrectly played, that student returns to the deck, flips over a new card and repeats the process.
How to Win:
The relay continues until one team has correctly made their way through all of the cards in their team’s deck and every member of the team is sitting in a line behind the piano bench.
The directions above describe the most basic form of the game. To make the game more challenging…
1) Instruct the students to name the note on the card and then play the key on the piano that is a major or minor third (or fourth, fifth etc.) above the note on the card.
2) Instruct the students to name the note on the card and then play the major triad using the note on the card as the root of the triad.
3) Instruct the students to name the note on the card and then play the major scale using the note on card as the tonic.
4) Instruct the students (especially beginners) to name the note and then play all of the keys on the piano that share that note name (this one gets intense as you have two kids leaping over each other… I suggest helmets 😉 ).
Loving Piano Game Ideas?
Well, we love to write about piano games! Check out these past blog posts on the topic of Piano Teaching Games…