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Learn Musical Notes with Colours
A Messy Sheet Music Example
Make Music Fun to Learn
By first learning and then teaching music for a while, I came trough some difficulties.
Appoint the names of the musical notes was a fairly easy work.
Most of the people can do it within a short time, if they find something that spurs them to learn quickly.
Some still have many difficulties learning them and they think that without a teacher it may be an impossible task to do.
To me, it tooks only a week, but then I came trough the problem of recognizing the musical notes while playing them.
That was a completely different matter than just being able to name the musical notes correctly on the staff.
I tried to write letters and numbers upon every dot, but it wasn't helpful at all and most of all simply confusing to my eyes.
So I started to try to find any method that others used to recognize the musical notes quickly, but all of what I found was only the same advice " keep practicing it and in no time you will notice that you achieved it ".
If you are trying to learn sheet music since a while, you know well that you shouldn't write anything on the score page.
To write the names of the notes or other things will distract you from the sheet music itself and you will never learn to read the musical notes properly.
The best thing to do is divide the musical notes in groups and play with them trying to name them correctly.
If you make an error then you start from the first note and so on until you arrive at the end of the score page.
In this way the amount of information that you learn is tiny and will be imprinted in your brain for a longer time.
If you have already learned to read musical notes, would you have liked to have used a method like this?
Coloured Sheet Music Example
- Petit papa Noël coloured sheet music
Colored sheet music of the song Petit papa Noël sung by Tino Rossi, arranged for multychambered ocarina
Coloured Sheet Music Notes
As a successful method so far, I found that colours help to recognize musical notes a lot better than the classic music notation.
For the eyes will be much easier to see the next three musical notes if they are coloured other than black dots or different shapes.
Studying different problems, pros and cons together with other musicians and people who wanted to learn how to read sheet music and taking the idea from the "Pyongy Rainbow Army", we decided that using the colours of the rainbow will be better other than using a random progression of colours.
Because almost anyone (other than blind people) have seen a rainbow in their life, so the progression will be more instant.
The "Pyongy Rainbow Army" was first used as a teaching tool with kids without any disorder, because the colours attracted them, so teaching music was far easier and funnier than just talking about what is a "B" and why it is "there".
Teaching the correspondence of the colours to the musical notes become more like a game.
In this way you can capture everyone's attention on the lesson in front of them.
Now you may think "This is just another way of cheating, because every colour is just like a different shape or a letter or a number wrote on the top of the musical note".
In some ways I agree with that too, because colours are catchy and let you know easily which will be the next note.
But we also have to think about the people who have attention disorders, dyslexia, strabismus, or other learning disabilities and visual impairments.
Other than drive the attention of kids, colours also helps the people with visual memory.
Both adults and kids will associate the colours to the names of the musical note, in this way recognizing the musical notes will be much easier.
After they have learned music with this method they can easily change to classic music notation or stick with this fun method because in their head they will have a distinction of every musical note.
For people with dyslexia or autism instead, coloured musical notes become a must in order to be able to position the dots on the lines.
Studies demonstrated that kids with autism learned more quickly and without any problem how to read sheet music if the musical notes where coloured other than just black dots.
The full PRA collection
Visually Impaired People
As you may or may not know, there are several sigh problems, some of them affect only some spectrum of colours.
Others, instead, completely mess up the full range of colours.
So, in coloured sheet music, there is the need to create a progression of colours which will avoid these specific gradations in the best way possible, in order to make every musical note different from the other.
How the Colours Look Like With the Different Sigh Impairments
Have you ever met a person with visual impairment?
A case where colours are not useful at all is with people with blindness problem. They will not have any possibility to recognise any colour change with their own eyes and need special tools to do so.
This is why special sheet music for blind people was created.
Blind people use Braille punched pages and sheet music become literally a succession of words like a story that they read using their fingertips and moving from top-left to bottom-right of the page.
In this way blind people will learn how to read sheet music and play songs like any other musician without any impairment.
Special Tools to Read Sheet Music for Blind People
Nowadays there are also some interesting tools which will help blind people to "see" what is written on classical sheet music pages without the need of Braille sheet music punched pages.
Some of these tools scan the page while you move your hand on it and reproduce a sound depending on the height of the musical note. In this way the blind person will know the pitch and how the song proceeds.
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© 2014 Mickji