Below find some great games that are simple to play and effective at aiding the teaching process. Click here to see Games for Students and Parents
This game can be played with marbles, pennies, M& M’s, etc. Choose which fits best for your student and studio.
Place the reward items on one side of the piano (in a jar or cup). When a student plays a difficult spot perfectly, he/she gets to move one reward to the other side of the piano (again in a jar or cup). If he/she makes a mistake, then the student stops, and all the reward items are moved back to the original side. The goal is to get all of the rewards moved over to the “perfect” side. If he/she is successful then let him/her keep the reward.
This game of Copycat is great for practicing Ear Training and Rhythm.
Teacher claps a rhythm and student repeats it from ear exactly. For young students and beginner students, start with simple rhythms (like all quarter notes, which are even) and then increase in difficulty as the child is capable. This game allows for difficult rhythm examples, so this is not a “limiting” exercise. It can grow with the child.
Challenges are a great way to motivate the competitive student.
Play an example (technique, student’s music, etc.) and have your student try to copy you exactly. This is a great way to practice expression and articulation!
Create a matching game with a TWIST.
Set up a matching game where the “matches” are related items instead of exact matches, such as:
For this game you will need two different sets of flashcards and an object to use for pointing/tapping the cards.
Spread two sets of flashcards out on the fallboard, floor, table or any other surface. One set has the key signatures on the staff and the other lists the name of each Major/minor key. Give the student something which they can use to point to/tap the cards. The teacher then calls out “Simon Says…” either the name of a key or a specific number of sharps/flats. For example, “Simon Says… key of A Major.” The student points or taps the corresponding key signature on the staff. Or, “Simon Says… 3 sharps.” The student points or taps the card that says A Major/f# minor.
This is a game of role reversal.
Have your student play chords, arpeggios, intervals, etc. and YOU guess the answer. This will give your student the opportunity to think, and it’s always fun to try to stump the teacher.
Play incorrectly some technique exercises, examples from your students, music, or any other activity and see if your student can figure out and explain what you are doing wrong.
Fun competition with the teacher is a great way to enhance a student’s skills.
Set up a playful “duel” between teacher and student. For example: “Can you do it as fast as I can?” If the student is able to keep up, he/she receives a reward. This can be applied to almost anything. Below are some additional ideas to consider:
Provide students with a fun and exciting way to practice elementary theory terms. This crossword puzzle includes 10 early elementary music terms and definitions — tie, whole note, repeat sign, quarter note, half note, bar line, slur, double bar line, measure and staff.