If you’re avoiding practicing your piano scales because you think they’re too boring, consider this: there are ways to make them a bit more fun! Read on for some ideas from Little Elm, TX piano teacher Chavalia M...
Music is a very creative outlet for expression. Some focus on learning songs only, while others may take to mastering piano techniques instead. Regardless of the particular interest, it’s imperative that practice sessions are varied and interesting, so as not to cause boredom.
When learning a new song, practicing the relative scale will help train the student on playing in multiple keys, and contributes to maximum retention of musical concepts. For example, if a song is in the key of F major, then it would be beneficial to practice the F major scale. One way to make it fun is to find a groovy beat – one where the tempo can be adjusted. Try to pick a type of beat that resembles a familiar style of music. Start out with a slower tempo, then gradually speed it up. This style of practice will not only cause quick memorization of scales, but will also aid in mastering the technique of correct fingering.
Another way to make scales more fun and easy to memorize is to skip the same notes when practicing scales with both left and right hands. As an example, if the C scale is to be practiced, instead of playing the scale straight ( C-D-E-F-G-A-B-C), take out a different note each time the scale is played (similar to playing “B-I-N-G-O”). [--D-E-F-G-A-B-C]. This will force the brain to constantly keep that particular scale at the forefront of the mind.
The most important thing to keep in mind is that creativity is limitless. It’s great to use a book that helps guide practicing scales, but practicing can be so much more enjoyable when creativity is present. Have fun, use familiar beats that can be found on any standard keyboard, and create simple yet engaging games that are tailored to suit the song you’re learning!
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Chavalia M. teaches piano, music recording and music theory lessons to students of all ages in Little Elm, TX. Her specialties include improvisation and music creation. Chavalia joined the TakeLessons team in December 2012, as a Texas-certified music educator and over 10 years of teaching experience. Learn more about Chavalia, or search for a teacher near you!
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