Archive for the 'Learning' Category

music music quizz

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Barre Chord Basics

Learn all about barre chords and how they are played with this video tutorial. What exactly are barre chords and what makes them so interesting? They are simplistic chords that can be shifted anywhere up and down the neck while retaining the same shape. This allows you to hold the same shape with your hand while moving up and down the neck to play different chords. No need to change finger positions!


Keep practicing and don’t forget to leave a comment by clicking on the comment link or entering them in the form below!

Play piano online with this virtual piano keyboard!

Take a break, have some fun with an online piano game!

Fiddle around with this virtual piano keyboard, and discover the relationship with pitch and keys on the piano.

See how the notes go higher when you play to the right- up- on the piano and vice versa.

Of course the best is to play on your real piano, but on this piano game you can see the relationship between both notes and keys!

If you press the “Loop” button and then “Play”, you can hear your masterpiece (!) play over and over!

You can change the rhythm slightly by adding quarter rests as well.

Have fun!

Careers in music A practical guide for parents

Music is such a broad field – there is the music industry and music itself. So there are lots and lots of choices for a career within music. It’s not just about being a pop star – we have music lawyers, admin support staff, sound engineering. It is a valid choice to make as a career.
Jacqui McDonnell, Life Coach

If your child is mad about music they may be thinking about further study or even a career in music. At this point many parents ask: is there really a future in music?

Today music is a major industry with a wide range of opportunities, employing an estimated 130,000 full-time in the UK alone. Your child may want to study music for the love of it, or to pursue a career as a singer, instrumentalist, or composer, but the possibilities don’t stop there. Whatever the level of skills your child has achieved, there are career paths open, whether they decide to leave school at sixteen or go on to university. Whatever their interest there are jobs in teaching or music therapy, production, promotion, management, as well as performance.


You don’t need to be musical to help your child develop their musical abilities. But it can help if you understand a few basic musical terms. Music Essentials is designed to help you with any new words you may encounter in Parents Music Room. It is a guide to commonly-used words, explained in simple language.

If your child is learning music in school, or wants to sing or play an instrument, this will help you support them. Just click on the tabs above or links below.

However this is not a substitute for a comprehensive guide to music terminology, a course in music theory, or good teacher.
A – E
F – J
K – P
Q – S
T – Z
Music Sense
Our interactive activity Music Sense brings basic concepts to life with sound and visual imagery in an interactive glossary.

The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music
A wide range of useful publications and ideas on music theory and practice from the examination board, Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music. It includes the Royal Academy of Music, the Royal College of Music, the Royal Northern College of Music, and the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama.

music notepair dyads

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music quizz

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How will music affect your unborn child?

Womb Music

He would never normally sit like that through a whole performance. He’d get bored. I’m convinced it’s something to do with having heard it when he was in the womb.
Kathryn Singleton, Opera Singer

Unborn babies can hear clearly at about 20 weeks of pregnancy and research suggests that they will remember the music you have played up to the age of twelve months.

Dr Alexandra Lamont is a Lecturer in the Psychology of Music at Keele University, says: “It used to be assumed that it was really noisy in the womb but actually it’s quite quiet. “So the baby should be able to hear your stereo at a reasonable volume. You don’t need to apply headphones to your bump!

So what to play to them?
Dr Lamont says: “Any kind of music that you like, although bass frequencies will travel through fluid better and be more audible to your unborn baby.”

And how does it make them feel?
Opera singer Kathryn Singleton participated in the BBC1 project, A Child Of Our Time. The BBC played both opera and the soundtrack for Pulp Fiction to Kathryn’s unborn baby, Matthew. She says: “With the opera, his heartbeat changed with the moods of the piece, then with the really fast Pulp Fiction song he just went absolutely nuts.”

Hip-hop artist Blade believes music played to his son J in his mother’s womb had an effect months later. He said: “Before J was even born, I used to play him Eric B. & Rakim in the womb. He was about four months old crying his eyes out and I put on Eric B. & Rakim, and he started smiling.”
It used to be assumed that it was really noisy in the womb but actually it’s quite quiet.
Dr Alexandra Lamont, Music Psychology Lecturer

Dr. Lamont has found that if you play the same piece of music every day for the last three months of pregnancy, and play it back to your one year old, he or she will recognise it.
Kathryn Singleton thinks the effects might last even longer than 12 months:

“I was five months pregnant with my first child while I was performing Aida, so he would have heard it all the time whilst in the womb. Then, I did Aida again when he was five years old. He came to a performance and sat totally still for three hours, without moving a muscle. He would never normally sit like that through the whole performance. He’d get bored. I’m convinced it’s something to do with having heard it when he was in the womb.”


* Try different kinds of music to see how your baby responds. Chart pop, jazz, R’n’B, reggae, anything you enjoy.
* Music that soothes you may not soothe your baby. You may find your new-born baby calms down to music with a distinct rhythm.
* If you’re enjoying music, your unborn child will pick up on this emotion. So, relax.

How to Play Romantic Piano

Here is a nice introduction to improvising romantic-sounding music and songs on the piano. The first half of the video is more pertinent to beginning pianists. Practice moving through the C, Fm and G chords while improvising notes with the right hand. This chord progression is at the “heart” of many romantic ballads and songs.

Here are representations of the C, Fm and G chords that he uses in the video.


Keep practicing and don’t forget to leave a comment by clicking on the comment link or entering them in the form below!

Starting Them Young: What are the Choices?

Music lessons for toddlers
It only works if the parent, child and teacher work in a triangle.
Alison Apley, Suzuki teacher and teacher trainer

In every culture, all over the world, music is a crucial part of early learning, and a source of fun and creativity. Appreciating music is a lifelong pleasure and music can also teach coordination, cooperation and concentration. It is also part of the National Curriculum. But there is a world of difference between a music-based playgroup and learning an instrument. What should you choose?

No child is ever dragged into one of our classes, in fact they run into our class.
Pat Wislocki, British Coordinator of Colourstrings

Music as Play
From the outset children should be actively engaged in music-making: singing, playing and moving to music. All playgroups should use music but there are some which use music as a basis for their activities. They may follow a particular teaching method or approach. If they do it is well worth enquiring a little further. All have their fans and their critics. It is best to ask advice from your local authority, school or other parents. You may find it helpful to contact the Pre-School Music Association. If you can go to see classes for yourself, take your child to give them a chance to try it out.

If they offer a balanced diet of singing, movement, percussion, play and listening to music then it is probably worthwhile. But the teachers can make a big difference. Are the lessons lively and varied? Do the teachers seem committed?

Pat Wislocki, is British coordinator for Colourstrings, a method with a history of teaching children as young as eighteen months.
“We’re playing lots of clapping and marching games and singing. You start with little two-note songs so the child can learn to sing in tune.” Colourstrings originates from Hungary and follows the Kodaly philosophy of learning through play and song from very early on.

Elizabeth Chambers has two children doing Colourstrings. She says: “It really captures them. It’s right where they are, with enjoyment and games.”

DaCapo is another method that aims to make music fun. It emphasises the importance of song and training the musical ear with games and exercises, not just before beginning an instrument but right through to the teenage years.

Jane Cutler is one of its founders. She says of conventional teaching: “Children starting an instrument have no idea of the difference between two notes. They can’t hold a pulse, yet you’re giving them a cello to play. It’s a joke, it’s impossible.”

Learning an Instrument
The Suzuki Method teaches children as young as two and a half to play complicated pieces, usually on violin, by copying. Alison Apley, Suzuki teacher and teacher trainer, says: “It only works if the parent, child and teacher work in a triangle.”

Although it is effective, Suzuki is also controversial. Sheila Nelson, a well-known specialist in string education and teacher of violinist Nicola Loud, who became Young Musician of the Year in 1990, says: “It’s fine if you want children to play organised music at a young age but if they want to be real musicians, Suzuki isn’t on, mainly because there’s nothing creative, no singing, just copying straight onto the instrument. They have difficulty reading music, particularly rhythms. It’s too much cart before the horse.”

But Steve Lawrence, parent of two Suzuki children, says:
“It’s very child-centred and because they are in a performance situation once a week, making mistakes doesn’t matter to them, they just carry on.”

In the end the choice is yours, the important thing is to find out about the kind of class you are considering for your child.

* Try it and make sure your child is happy in the class
Ask other parents about their experiences of early learning groups
* Consider whether you can make the time commitment