Last week in my learning project I considered it a big accomplishment for myself. Feel free to view last weeks accomplishment here. My progress allowed me to learn two songs, “Three Blind Mice” and “Happy Birthday” on the keyboard using material from Piano Song Download as well as by watching a quick tutorial on note and hand location on the keyboard from a resourceful YouTube video.
I wanted to start by recapping some of the crucial information I learned last week that includes piano note location and how to orient your hands on the keyboard or piano. To do this I am attempting to use Screencastify to provide the annotated screen shots provided by Skitch which I found available for free download here. Skitch allows the user to annotate screen shots by adding texts and arrows for users to follow along. Check out the introduction to piano and keyboard I created here. If I made any glaring mistakes please let me know in the comments.
This week I decided to try a couple of different apps found on the Apple App Store or Google Play. The first one I started with was called “Simply Piano.” Now contrary to the website at Piano Song Download this app has you reading sheet music from the beginning. The app was easy to access; a simple download and I was in without the use of a login or need to sign up. I decided to play it coy, and identified myself as a beginner from a menu. The next question asked was in regards to your ambitions; I noted I was hoping to make piano playing a new hobby. Finally you could select a song to play as your goal. I chose “Baby Shark.”
Simply Piano led me through a series of note playing exercises that focused on my right hand and all 5 notes A – G. I found this app very easy to use and it moved along at a good pace providing challenging note skips going from C to F to D to G and so on. The real cool feature about this was that it used the microphone in the phone to detect if my notes were correct. It worked seamless for me. However just like my posting title says, I most times felt I was playing all the correct notes, but the Simply Piano app thought otherwise. I used my Iphone as the tech source for these lessons. Again I felt comfortable doing it, and also included a short video of my 7 year old daughter trying out the tech source. Check them out:
Using this app I was credited with completing Essentials 1 in their curriculum. A lot of the next material was locked asking for payment but I found some mini workouts that made it fun to start playing along with familiar songs. This kept the lesson engaging as I found myself tapping along to the beat. Here is me playing along (right hand only) to Sugar by Maroon 5:
So, as I mentioned, I found a lot of the information on the app was locked and needed a subscription. However I had lots of luck with the “5 Min workouts.”I would still consider this week a success. I would say that I improved my ability to read the basic sheet music note location and also improved some of the coordination in my right hand. I will have to continue to search apps with some more free content in this journey. In my conversations I have had people mention Note Quest and Flow Key. I look forward to trying these out and reflecting upon them in my next post. Till then I will leave you with some Baby Shark. And remember there are no wrong notes!