Reply To: Teaching Note Reading in Orchestra

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Learning to read music is just like learning how to read words- the kids need enough exposure to really be familiar what is happening. I teach guitar privately, and what I generally do for my younger students is teach them string by string. For example, on the first lesson, I’ll teach the high E string and the B string. In that lesson, I’ll show them how to play a short tune or two. When they are familiar with that tune, I’ll write it out on the staff for them. I show them the mnemonics for remembering the notes on lines and spaces (FACE and Every Good Boy Does Fine) and then have them slowly fill in the notes. Eventually I incorporate more notes and more strings, until they are entirely comfortable with what they are reading/playing. That’s personally my approach, but I know that every student learns differently.