Re: Beginners writing in notes
Posted by No! on 1/9/2020, 12:16 pm, in reply to "Beginners writing in notes"
In general, it's a no from me. It definitely hampers their learning of the notation, because they're reading the letters rather than the notes. They'll often make rhythmic mistakes because they're focused on the letters (which of course have no rhythm). I often see music where every note is written in, and a bunch of them are just wrong. |
I do commonly use writing notes in as an accommodation for my SPED/504 kids. Even with them, I work hard to get them away from it.
As new notes are introduced, I don't mind if they write in the name of the new note for a few lines in the book. After 2-3 lines of reading concert G, they shouldn't need to write it in any more.
As a way to wean them off of it, limit how many they can write in. Maybe allow them 1 per measure. Later one per line. Or the first time each note appears in the line (if you have 3 Ds in a row, you don't need to write in each one).
You can also do more sight-reading with them. We use sightreadingfactory.com to generate random exercises using the first 5 notes and do that every day. You'll often find that the kids who need the help the most will not participate in the sight-reading unless you sit next to them and force it.
This is more a next-year solution, but you might use it to catch these kids up - flash cards. Have the kids make their own on index cards (studies have shown that the physical act of writing things down helps to strengthen recall). Drill them in class. If you have technology available, musictheory.net is great for this. You can project on the screen, or have kids do it for homework.
Check out the After Sectionals podcast for more ideas. Darcy and her crew seem to have a great system.
So I want to get yalls opinions on Beginners writing in notes.
To preface this all, I am typically very against beginners writing in their notes because I am worried about it becoming a habit that will eventually cripple their music reading ability.
However what I am coming across is that I have many students that are still at this point in the year that are struggling to read the notes....or if they can read the notes they are struggling to match up the note names and the fingerings. Whether that is from a lack of effort/practice or from other things is neither here nor there.
Is it worth the battle of trying to keep them not to write their notes in when they arent playing because they cant read it anyway or should I allow them (or even encourage some of them) to write them in while stressing to them that of course they wont be doing this forever (I always tell them its kind of like reading a book...they used to have to sound it out and now they can just read it like anything else)
and if you let them write in their notes what are some steps you take to try to wean them off of that crutch as they get older? (either later in their beginner year or as they get older into their JH/HS career)