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#64174 - 10/21/13 09:58 PM Your Favourite Rote Pieces
pianojazzgirl Offline
Mainstay Member

Registered: 07/26/03
Posts: 847
Loc: Montreal
I'm sure this has been discussed before in these forums, but my searches are yielding nothing.

I'd love it if you would share your favourite pieces to teach by rote... as in pieces that are quite patterned or otherwise lend themselves to rote teaching. I guess I'm looking for 2 main categories: 1. pieces that can easily be taught to the beginner (even young beginner), and 2. "student saver" types of pieces that sound more difficult than they are and move around the keyboard that would be suitable for levels 1, 2, 3 or higher. I'm currently looking for both types at the moment: some for my new 3yo and 4yo students, and some for a 9yo student in 2A who struggles a bit with reading and could use a confidence boost.

Thanks in advance! smile

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#64175 - 10/21/13 10:30 PM Re: Your Favourite Rote Pieces [Re: pianojazzgirl]
John Offline
Star Member

Registered: 03/29/01
Posts: 2454
Loc: Bellingham, WA
Go here - PIANO SAFARI

and look for:

Cleaver the Beaver
Crocodile in the Nile
Hungry Herbie Hippo
I Love Coffee
King of the African Drum
Monkey Blues
Rainbow Colors
Swans on the Lake
Zebra on a Pogo Stick

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#64179 - 10/22/13 08:41 AM Re: Your Favourite Rote Pieces [Re: John]
pianojazzgirl Offline
Mainstay Member

Registered: 07/26/03
Posts: 847
Loc: Montreal
John - I literally *just* put in an order for a couple of copies of Piano Safari technical exercises and rote pieces! Isn't that funny! I was also just thinking of you, because I seem to remember that you wrote quite a few black-key rote pieces for young beginners that used to be available somewhere (maybe the yahoo teachers group files?), but now I can't find them. Am I remembering correctly? I should look through the downloads on my own computer because (if they ever existed... I do not trust my memory!) they might be on here somewhere.

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#64184 - 10/22/13 11:37 AM Re: Your Favourite Rote Pieces [Re: pianojazzgirl]
ransomed Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 01/05/11
Posts: 223
Loc: New York, USA
For the 2A student, she might love "The First Snowflake of Winter" from the Gold Star Performance Book L2A. That is beautiful and you can teach it by rote.

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#64189 - 10/22/13 10:56 PM Re: Your Favourite Rote Pieces [Re: ransomed]
ransomed Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 01/05/11
Posts: 223
Loc: New York, USA
Everyone please chime in!! Besides Piano Safari are there any other resources available to us? I may go rote entirely for one student of mine. She has to want to read music for me to teach her.. and she's not interested.

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#64191 - 10/23/13 01:18 AM Re: Your Favourite Rote Pieces [Re: pianojazzgirl]
John Offline
Star Member

Registered: 03/29/01
Posts: 2454
Loc: Bellingham, WA
Originally Posted By: pianojazzgirl
I seem to remember that you wrote quite a few black-key rote pieces for young beginners that used to be available somewhere (maybe the yahoo teachers group files?), but now I can't find them. Am I remembering correctly?


I used to have a few things online, but no rote pieces. Music Tree has some rote pieces, and they are often left "incomplete" so students may improvise and complete them. Sometimes I just compose a piece on the spot with the student and then work with them to find a way to write it so they remember it (finger numbers, letters, shapes, drawings, etc.)

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#64192 - 10/23/13 01:30 AM Re: Your Favourite Rote Pieces [Re: John]
Arlene Steffen Offline
Star Member

Registered: 06/20/00
Posts: 2972
Loc: Fresno, CA USA
Solo Flight by Elvina Pearce is a whole collection of pieces that are easily taught by rote.

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#64205 - 10/23/13 02:09 PM Re: Your Favourite Rote Pieces [Re: Arlene Steffen]
AmyEliz Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 11/24/10
Posts: 115
Great thread: I like the idea of inserting a rote piece for confidence building. Thanks for all the repertoire suggestions.

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#64212 - 10/23/13 10:45 PM Re: Your Favourite Rote Pieces [Re: AmyEliz]
ransomed Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 01/05/11
Posts: 223
Loc: New York, USA
Thank you John and Arlene for the recommendations!

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#64219 - 10/24/13 10:06 AM Re: Your Favourite Rote Pieces [Re: ransomed]
John Offline
Star Member

Registered: 03/29/01
Posts: 2454
Loc: Bellingham, WA
I forgot about "Solo Flight" - that collection is a great choice for a first supplement to any method series; most pieces provide experiences moving around the keyboard in different octaves. I've also enjoyed using Elvina Pearce's "Diversions" as an early-level supplement.

I do think Piano Safari has really hit on something important - videos that demonstrate how to play rote pieces from an angle above the keys that is easy to follow. An entire first year of technique could be taught this way without using a single book - ears wide open and eyes on the keyboard and arm-wrist-hand-fingers.

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