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#1262416 - 09/04/09 02:31 PM help
Mr.A Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/07/09
Posts: 29
Hi all,

I have a little trouble figuring out how to convey the concept of time signature and note/rest duration to a child that cant really add or calculate yet without confusing him...
got any tips for me?


thanks.

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#1262430 - 09/04/09 02:48 PM Re: help [Re: Mr.A]
Chris H. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 2919
Loc: UK.
I use shapes a bit like jigsaw pieces. The whole note is a long rectangular shape, the half note is half the size etc. They play with the shapes and fit them together so they can see that 4 quarter notes add up to a whole note and so on. It helps with time sigs as well because I can ask them to show me 3 quarter notes or 2 half notes with their shapes for example.


Edited by Chris H. (09/04/09 02:49 PM)
Edit Reason: Typo
_________________________
Pianist and piano teacher.

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#1262441 - 09/04/09 03:08 PM Re: help [Re: Chris H.]
Kreisler Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13811
Loc: Iowa City, IA
I don't see the point in conceptualizing it at such a young age. If a child isn't old enough to count and add well, it's enough to teach by rote and to help him get a feeling of the rhythm and familiarity with the symbols.

The conceptualizing comes later, around age 8. Until then, exposure and experience are sufficient.
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1262451 - 09/04/09 03:19 PM Re: help [Re: Kreisler]
Mrs.A Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/15/09
Posts: 155
Originally Posted By: Kreisler
I don't see the point in conceptualizing it at such a young age. If a child isn't old enough to count and add well, it's enough to teach by rote and to help him get a feeling of the rhythm and familiarity with the symbols.

The conceptualizing comes later, around age 8. Until then, exposure and experience are sufficient.


I agree.
_________________________
Piano Teacher.
Church Music Director.
Kindermusik Instructor.
Mom to four boys.


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#1262459 - 09/04/09 03:32 PM Re: help [Re: Kreisler]
Betty Patnude Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/11/07
Posts: 4896
Loc: Puyallup, Washington
Why risk the confusion of a young mind?

Isn't it important to do certain tasks and conceptions when the child has reached a level of age, maturity, physical development of the brain and body before proceeding?

I think Mozart as a child was a captive audience for his father's dominance in insisting on his children's participation in music making. Fortunately, the kids had an interest and talent for it, which was a requirement, I'd think, other wise how far would they have gotten together. Think of their daily lives and you'll realize most families in town would have been been indoor bound most of the year - winters, inclement weather - no transportation. At least they were occupying themselves with an activity geared to their future reknown and success - actually a projection to gaining income producing work in the field of music for their lifetimes.

Tiger Woods, Serena & Vanessa Williams, the 5 Browns, the (Michael)Jackson 5 all come to mind as having traveled that route with young children. Then, most recently, there is OctoMom and Jon and Kate plus 8, leading their families into the media, which while not being the arts, is ambitious and extremely well paid.

Without Mr. Mozart, for instance, we would not have Amadeus and Nannerl to speak of about today and neither would we have "Mozart Mouse".

What are your reasons for wanting to teach the cognitive things of music making to a child who is not ready to receive them? It does take a huge amount of brain power and physical effort to create a cognitive musical brain.

Does "capacity" have relevance here?

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#1262477 - 09/04/09 03:55 PM Re: help [Re: Betty Patnude]
Kreisler Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13811
Loc: Iowa City, IA
Originally Posted By: Betty Patnude
Think of their daily lives and you'll realize most families in town would have been been indoor bound most of the year - winters, inclement weather - no transportation.


Mozart traveled extensively as a child, and the part of the world he grew up in had four seasons just like the Midwestern United States. And I think they probably spent plenty of time outside. I would even guess they spent more time outside when the weather was nice, not having as many indoor amusements or the comfort of air conditioning we have today.

I don't really understand the relevance of all that to the question that was asked. And what do you mean by "capacity?" Now even I'm confused! smile
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1262480 - 09/04/09 03:58 PM Re: help [Re: Betty Patnude]
Chris H. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 2919
Loc: UK.
The OP has not mentioned the age of this child.
_________________________
Pianist and piano teacher.

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#1262508 - 09/04/09 04:54 PM Re: help [Re: Chris H.]
Kreisler Offline


Registered: 11/27/02
Posts: 13811
Loc: Iowa City, IA
The phrase "can't really add or calculate yet" is a good clue, though. smile
_________________________
"If we continually try to force a child to do what he is afraid to do, he will become more timid, and will use his brains and energy, not to explore the unknown, but to find ways to avoid the pressures we put on him." (John Holt)

www.pianoped.com
www.youtube.com/user/UIPianoPed

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#1262528 - 09/04/09 05:34 PM Re: help [Re: Kreisler]
Chris H. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 2919
Loc: UK.
Maybe, maybe not. Childhood development depends on so many things. I have known kids starting school who can read, write, count amongst other things and then there are those who hardly know their own name. A child who 'can't really add or calculate yet' could mean anything. The reason for this lack of knowledge could just be age or it could be that nobody has taught the child how to understand these things. Besides, you don't need to be able to add or calculate to grasp the basic concept of duration.
_________________________
Pianist and piano teacher.

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#1262605 - 09/04/09 08:45 PM Re: help [Re: Chris H.]
Betty Patnude Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/11/07
Posts: 4896
Loc: Puyallup, Washington
Kreisler commented:

"I don't really understand the relevance of all that to the question that was asked."

"And what do you mean by "capacity?"

Now even I'm confused!"

It just associates in my mind that we are a very busy society compared to life in Mozart's time - one where he and his sister were prodigies of note. I think time might have been used better by the people in earlier days than we do today just because of less choices in their 24 hour time clock. Many of us seem to go to bed at night with an unfinished list of things we intended to do today.

Music study could have filled the day at Mozart's home as a daily activity. We are lucky to get 30 minutes practice from kids these days and lessons are only 30 minutes long once a week for beginners, usually.

I think maybe the Mozarts would never have "timed" a half of an hour by the clock and that time had little need to be measured during the day. It just spent itself until twilight. This is regarding how much practice time the kids might have been accountable for on a daily basis.

As far as capacity goes...however old this child is, he has certain abilities at his present age of course, and music might be appropriate as an appreciation and enjoyment such as KinderMusic and such preparatory systems, but without reading, language and comprehension skills in place, the communication is going to be over the child's capacity to grasp it and work with it...at least, this is what I think.

He did not state the age, but the information made me think quite young - 4 or 5. There are music books for 5 and 6 in "off line/pre-chart/rote" but the father was talking about using music symbols as a working intelligence for a young child.

They can parrot a lot of things back to you at an early age, but that does not mean it is learned and used as music must be learned and used.

Then there is the physical capacity. If you sit a small child at a piano it is the proportions of a very short person driving an old Edsel! Anyone remember that car! People couldn't see over the dashboard. Asking children to be on the bench playing a piano is quite a physical requirement for them. We all complain about bad backs and such and much of misuse of the body starts earlier in life than we think.

I guess I think like this because of the 3 girls, 2 boys I raised - not necessarily from only teaching experience. There seem to be prime times for kids to participate in certain things. If you have had kids in your daily life, maybe you think in a different dimension about what kids are all about?

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#1262859 - 09/05/09 10:14 AM Re: help [Re: Betty Patnude]
Mr.A Offline
Full Member

Registered: 08/07/09
Posts: 29
Thank you all for your comments.

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