Music note flashcards like these GIANT free printable flashcards are great for fast-moving games like Whack-It!
Why would bigger be better,when flashcards are typically more DREARY than fun? Well, if used in combination with rambunctious games during lesson time, these giant flashcards make note-reading a blast.
My favorite way to use these giant music note flashcards is in a game called "Whack-It!", described by Natalie Wickham in her helpful music blog MusicMatters.com.
Natalie shows a young student using giant cards with piano keys on them in a 2008 post about Whack-It, but my giant piano flashcards have music notes on them instead. With cards, a spatula, and a floor, you are set!
You will need to cut these printed pages in half to make 2 cards.
With students who are beginning notereaders, I mix up the chosen cards and ask them to identify them in order. That is, I say, "Find Middle C." Whack!
That one is easy to find. I remove the card from the floor.
Then, "Find D (or Middle D)." I might call it "the Daddy note -- strong enough to carry the giant ladder -- the staff -- on his back." (This is in contrast to the "weak" Baby note -- bass clef Middle B -- which lies on top of the staff or "ladder.")
Then E, then F, etc. For beginning readers, this works well. It's fun to watch them compare the note they just named with all the other cards, and look for the next higher note.
If they whack the wrong note, then back go all the flashcards they have already won onto the floor! This is pretty fun when they're racing against the clock -- say, a one-minute timer.
If they get all the chosen cards correctly, then the reward at my studio, currently, is to get to throw a "basketball" (a soft foam ball, really) through a small basketball hoop, anywhere from 3 to 10 shots, depending on how pressed for time I feel!
For group games with teams, or two music lessons back-to-back where the note-reading abilities of the students are pretty equivalent, we might have two "whackers" going. It's a little crazy, but fun.
Because the notes are set on the grand staff, these are really piano flashcards. I am using them with my violin and guitar students, but I plan to make some special treble-clef-only music flashcards for them soon. Update: Here they are!
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