Isn’t it funny how the most mundane jobs become absolutely marvelous when turned into a game? As parents, Trevor and I have learned this through experience with our two young daughters.
“Pick the clothes up off your bedroom floor”… typically ignored.
“I’m going to time you.. how many items of clothing can you put into this laundry basket by the time I count to ten?”… Kids race like maniacs to clean their rooms.
You’ve likely experienced this in your piano studio as well. Game-based learning turns boring theory exercises into brilliant learning opportunities. To illustrate the power of play, today we’re sharing a piano printable that will make your students smile when it’s time to do some score study.
Crossing Galaxies: A Score Study Piano Game
To play Crossing Galaxies you will need your student’s current piece (a full-page Level 1 or 2 piece works best), two different-colored highlighters and a copy of our free printable found here.
Note: The game board does not include accidentals. If your student’s piece is not in the key of C, have him write the key signature at the top of the page. This has the same effect on the game board note names as a key signature would on notes on the staff (all F’s become F#’s etc.)
How To Play:
- To begin, the student looks at his sheet music and names the very first note on the treble (or bass) staff. Next, he searches the Crossing Galaxies Score Study page for the matching letter and colors it in using his colored highlighter.
- The teacher repeats Step 1 using her own colored highlighter.
- The teacher and student repeat Steps 1 – 2 (alternating turns, moving note-by-note across the music) in an attempt to align three stars of the same color. The three colored stars can be aligned vertically, horizontally, or diagonally. Draw a line to connect the three.
- When three colored stars are aligned, the player using that colored highlighter scores one point.
- Play continues until one of two things happens: 1) Players reach the end of the piece OR, 2) One player scores five points.
- If players reach the end of the piece before scoring five points, the player with the most points wins the game.
- Notes: 1) If a player cannot find a star because all stars containing the required note name have been colored, the turn is over AND, 2) As the game progresses, the coloring of a single star may result in a number of different combinations of three aligned stars. In this case, one point is score for each new connection of three stars. See below for a game board example.
Players may choose to “block” each other from connecting a set of three, but this may not be the best game-play strategy (if it means missing out on scoring points). The block of 5 red stars in the example below counts as 2 points as the middle star is shared by two sets of three.
Enjoy! We love to see photos of your students using our resources! Be sure to tag us @teachpianotoday or #teachpianotoday on Facebook and Instagram so we can see them 🙂