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Teaching note-values to an adult student (Read 6952 times)

Offline Mayla

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Teaching note-values to an adult student
« on: August 14, 2013, 01:49:03 AM »
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Offline ajspiano

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #1 on: August 14, 2013, 02:38:13 AM »
couldn't you describe the notes with their other names rather than fractional names..

this is a crotchet, it is 1/2 the length of a minum.

so the fraction is only used in reference to the absolute note value and you never say something like their are 3 quarter notes in this bar of 3/4 time, only that there are 3 crotchets or 6 quavers etc.

atleast until the concept is more settled into her mind.

Offline j_menz

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #2 on: August 14, 2013, 03:27:45 AM »
I still get annoyed that a "whole note" is a semi-breve and a breve is "two whole notes".
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Offline ajspiano

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #3 on: August 14, 2013, 03:54:06 AM »
I still get annoyed that a "whole note" is a semi-breve and a breve is "two whole notes".

lol, me too.

Offline j_menz

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #4 on: August 14, 2013, 04:20:19 AM »
It appears only the French are sensible about this:



(At least so far as the languages represented are concerned)
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Offline outin

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #5 on: August 14, 2013, 04:43:32 AM »
Is it possible that she does not really understand the idea of different meters at all? Have you tried to give her homework: Pen and paper exercises with different meters where you have to put in the bar lines. Starting with something simple enough to not overwhelm her. She might not be able to concentrate enough on lessons to understand.

I have a friend who takes piano lessons but used to come to me to ask about rhythm and note values all the time. She just did not get the general idea at all. She was trying to memorize note values without having any framework in her mind. She needed a really thorough explanation and paperwork to get it, something that may be hard to do on a half hour piano lesson.
Pieces under work now: Franck op 18, Bach Sinfonia nr 9 and P&F a minor book 2.
Wait...no Scarlatti? Must add something soon...

Offline Mayla

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #6 on: August 14, 2013, 04:59:27 AM »
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Offline lostinidlewonder

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #7 on: August 14, 2013, 05:03:29 AM »
Teach her rhythmic solfege. Many different systems to look into.
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Offline Mayla

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #8 on: August 14, 2013, 05:06:44 AM »
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"The greatest thing in this world is not so much where we are, but in what direction we are moving"  ~Oliver Wendell Holmes

Offline outin

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #9 on: August 14, 2013, 05:12:37 AM »
I have never understood why some people have a problem with the German names (maybe because I have grown up with a similar system). It's just the most logical for me, because there's no need to remember specific names. But with this system you need to understand that the divisions to smaller note values are not always made the same way, they can be made by multiples of 2 or multiples of 3. (I'm not sure I can explain it well in English). This might be difficult to understand for a beginner...
Pieces under work now: Franck op 18, Bach Sinfonia nr 9 and P&F a minor book 2.
Wait...no Scarlatti? Must add something soon...

Offline outin

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #10 on: August 14, 2013, 05:19:12 AM »
OH!  AND, she has a similar confusion with the names of intervals ... a 5th, for example (but same with any name of an interval), she does not understand that it's not a fraction!  Again, I've tried to explain this and show its distance from the other note.  She obviously has a very strong mathematical pull that is actually getting in the way.  There has been some improvement here, but I am not convinced we are over the hump.

I have had the same problem with intervals: My mind don't want to accept that a 4th is NOT a distance of 4 notes (steps). Instead it is one note and then the 4th note counting from the first one. Maybe that's her problem? But of course we don't use 4th and so on but some italian (?) based names...
Pieces under work now: Franck op 18, Bach Sinfonia nr 9 and P&F a minor book 2.
Wait...no Scarlatti? Must add something soon...

Offline Mayla

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #11 on: August 14, 2013, 05:26:33 AM »
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"The greatest thing in this world is not so much where we are, but in what direction we are moving"  ~Oliver Wendell Holmes

Offline outin

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #12 on: August 14, 2013, 05:38:18 AM »
That is what I have shown her, but her mind is trying to take in a bigger concept still, and is stuck on the name.   I think that she thinks that if it's called a fourth, it *must* be a 1/4 of something and I think she tries to relate that to an octave, or to 12 chromatic tones within that, and it just gets all messed up.

Just an idea...Wonder if it would help as a start to refer to the finger numbers? Play a fourth is to play 1 and 4 and so on...of course one cannot think like this for long, that would give problems later, but maybe it would help her get rid of what she is thinking now?
Pieces under work now: Franck op 18, Bach Sinfonia nr 9 and P&F a minor book 2.
Wait...no Scarlatti? Must add something soon...

Offline nosilla

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #13 on: October 23, 2013, 05:12:31 AM »
Question:  Does this adult student interpret the rhythm of the written music accurately when reading independent of actually hearing the piece?

Offline florentin

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #14 on: October 23, 2013, 04:31:20 PM »
Can she play the pieces with correct rhythms?
That is what really matters in the end, isn't it?

Have you tried rhythmic dictation?
Clapping and notating measures that contain similar rhythmic divisions might help a bit.

good luck
"Piano Devotions For Little Fingers" Book/CD
Original Hymn Arrangements
Score Story Lesson  Devotion
http://www.florentintise.com/

Offline nosilla

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #15 on: October 23, 2013, 06:11:12 PM »
Can she play the pieces with correct rhythms?
That is what really matters in the end, isn't it?

What if the student cannot, in the end, play the pieces with correct rhythms?   

Offline florentin

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #16 on: October 23, 2013, 06:57:04 PM »
What if the student cannot, in the end, play the pieces with correct rhythms?   

I was just trying to make a point. Sometimes older students try to understand the theory behind the music before they can play it. With younger players it can work the other way around most of the time: sort of like learning to talk as a child - you talk first, you learn grammar later.

To answer your question "What if the student cannot, in the end, play the pieces with correct rhythm?" ... I haven't yet met a person who cannot play basic rhythms, or at least clap them back. Maybe the rhythms in the song this particular student is learning are too advanced for now. Perhaps they should get some pieces with quarter and eighth notes first?

Just a thought
"Piano Devotions For Little Fingers" Book/CD
Original Hymn Arrangements
Score Story Lesson  Devotion
http://www.florentintise.com/

Offline nosilla

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Re: Teaching note-values to an adult student
«Reply #17 on: October 23, 2013, 07:04:46 PM »
Thank you for your thoughts and your inquiries.   Yes quarters and eighths first...  I'm enjoying the input and inquiries on this forum.  Thanks again...