You will be giving a big TREAT to your beginning piano students if you can find any for them.
But the TRICK is finding Halloween songs that they can read easily and learn to play quickly, and that won't take too much time from their regular lesson material.
Here is a collection of songs for Halloween, with ALPHANOTES, and versions with just a handful of Alphanotes, as well as regular notation!
This is a group of songs my students and I have been enjoying for years.
Music should be fun, and maybe a little bit spooky at Halloween time, and that's why I wrote these songs!
This collection is a set of 8 songs, and now the downloads include arrangements with lettered notes as well.
The first song in the collection is Monsters Everywhere, and it is FREE.
Scroll down the page for the free download link...
"Out the window I can see monsters everywhere..."
Monsters Everywhere is very simple, yet has a feeling of building tension.
Even beginners can play this free Halloween music by watching the intervals closely.
Notes stay within one step of each other until the last phrase, when a repeated scale pattern makes the skips easy to figure out.
Below is the same song, but with "Alphanotes" - notes with letters inside the noteheads:
The new versions with Alphanotes - music notes with letters - have been very encouraging to younger students, and those whose note-reading skills are shaky.
These versions of "Monsters Everywhere" are also free to download (scroll to the bottom of the page to find the download links).
And here is a modified version of that, with some easy-read notes, and some regular notes:
Each of the 8 songs comes in THREE versions: as a version with standard notation, with AlphaNotes, and also with "helper notes" - just a few lettered notes.
The best thing about these little Halloween songs is that they conjure up pleasantly spooky images without being too creepy for young children.
Also, it is easy for piano students to succeed quickly (making them feel smart) with this "scary Halloween music" because the simple stories pull them along toward the conclusions with many repeated step-wise patterns.
All of the following 8 songs are available in 3 versions in the downloadable PDF file.
One version of each song is standard notation, one version is written entirely with Alphanotes, and one version is written with SOME alphanotes. (I call these "helper" versions.)
The noteheads are quite a bit larger with both kinds of Alphanote songs, to make the letters easy to read.
Ghosts and Goblins sounds like scary Halloween music because of all the half-steps, just as in the Jaws theme song.
There are some big steps in the music -- from G to Middle C and D -- but D is a note even your beginners likely recognize. (If not, then they are good candidates for the Alphanotes & Helper Notes arrangements.)
This song makes a good pattern-spotting and note-reading drill even away from the piano, and with a group of keyboard players. But best of all, it has a great spooky melody!
Candy Night and See the Pumpkins are safe little Halloween songs aimed at children whose parents tend to frown at celebrating Halloween.
These songs just celebrate the fun of costumes and candy.
"Did I see a witch last night when I was coming home?" This is the question and the theme of this eerie-sounding melody.
One of my young students liked this quick-success song "Did I See a Witch" so much that he wanted to play it for a Christmas recital.
Well, I wasn't going to put that title on the Christmas program, so together we scrambled to invent a new title and words, and came up with something involving hearing Santa and reindeer on the roof!
This Halloween song uses lots of repeated patterns and a minor feeling, building towards a surprise quarter rest and a staccato.
There's a Dark House plays with a hidden longing all of us have as children (and even as adults) -- the desire, for some reason, to be scared, but not to be really in danger.
We love to have a haunted house somewhere nearby upon which we can focus unspecified fears and suspicion! I think this song achieves this atmosphere, employing many half steps and a tritone in the melody.
Black Cat and Cats at Night are both a little bit harder than some of the other Halloween songs, because of skips, and little chords. However, one of your most timid beginners is bound to want one song or the other just because they are about cats!
Cats at Night is really fun, and a great favorite at my studio. All my students learn it at some point. The articulation (the "creeping" legato left hand and the staccato right hand chords) make it enough of a challenge for even a Level 1-2 student.
The words are fun, too: "Creeping 'round the house at night (meow! meow! meow!)..." etc.
In measure 3, the four beats of staccato followed by whole notes in both hands feels like a POUNCE! (Perhaps the cat has pounced upon a mouse.)
I like to approach this song as a duet the first practice session, switching LH/RH (left hand/right hand) parts with the student.
At the very end is a glissando.
SO FUN. Your pupils will have many imaginative ways they'd LIKE to play the glissando, but in the PDF collection, I offer my two bits' worth on how to achieve the glissando spectacularly, with the least amount of effort.
And that's all the 8 songs, with their trios of iterations - standard notation, with alphanotes, and "helper" notes!
Now here are the links to the free downloadable PDFs of Monsters Everywhere:
Download links for Monsters Everywhere:
If you enjoy this easiest piece of the 8-song collection, Halloween Song Set, consider downloading the complete set!
Aside from the fact that these Halloween songs are going to be hits with your beginner piano students, why should you buy Halloween Theme Songs from me?
* The 8-song collection, 24 pages of music, is available immediately as a digital download onto your computer, for only $8.00, with the right to make all the copies you wish, for your students.
* You don't have to download any new software into your computer in order to acquire the PDF for these Halloween songs. I don't know about you, but I detest clogging up my computer with yet another program I didn't know I needed. You just need a version of Adobe Acrobat or another PDF reader, which all computers come with. If you DON'T have Adobe Acrobat or a similar program, then you couldn't download any of my other PDFs either.
* For a little extra excitement, you can pick your own special paper, and print on unusual colors of paper instead of plain white. My students are thrilled when I give them music printed on colored pages, so at Halloween time, I go for darker paper -- as long as the notes can be read.
* The notes and lyrics are nice and big, making reading easy.
* I give you permission to make multiple copies legally of each song. This is a real deal! Ordinarily, one music book, for just one student, will cost at least $5.00, and then there is tax and postage.
*PayPal, the payment system I use, is a secure and recognized payment system. You can pay by credit or debit card, or your bank account. E-Junkie delivers the PDF document, working as a partner with PayPal...your purchase is guaranteed. Any problems downloading? Contact me here at Music-for-Music-Teachers, and I will email the file directly to you.
Tip for Printing:
Once you've got the PDF file for the Halloween theme songs, feed just one page at a time, unless you know you have high-quality paper which won't grab extra sheets when being pulled through the feeder.
I've been having young students select one of these each week, then doing a note-reading exercise with me.
Pen in hand, they spot a familiar note such as Middle D or C, and label it. Then they quickly spot all the rest of the Ds or Cs in the song - this is much faster and more reinforcing than going one different note at a time. Plus, it makes them feel smart!
One of the nice things about these Halloween songs is the limited number of notes they use.
Because of this, they make good "note-reading worksheet" companions.
I don't ask for perfection, but I will assign 2 of these songs to students who are currently progressing through "the Orange Book" (Perfect Start for Notereading) and instruct them to label the notes with the names using the Grand Staff worksheet as their guide.