Reading Rhythm – transcribing
Found in: Reading
When teaching reading rhythm I know transcribing is important, but should I expect my students to also transcribe with dotted notes, ties and rests? They can transcribe the basic, but even I struggle with transcribing the added ingredients. (Perhaps I just need to work on this more?)
Also, do any of you have any extra tricks for learning how to clap the dotted notes?
Mark M., New York
I look forward to hearing answers to your first question about transcribing those more advanced ingredients.
As for clapping dotted notes, I’ve found that if you make sure that from the very start of the program that students always clap/voice on each note, this best serves learning all the ingredients from the simple to complex, and it also best serves getting them all into FSS on the keyboard. This is because this forces clapping/voicing to mimic as closely as possible what the performance on the keyboard is like. You strike each note with a finger, so you clap/voice each note. You hold a note for however long, so you keep your hands together and extend the vocalization the same length. You rest by letting go of notes on the keyboard, so you keep your hands apart and silence your voice.
The (or at least an) alternative is to have the clapping and/or voicing have something to do with keeping the beat. This keeps the clapping and/or voicing too different compared to the keyboard performance, and it also ends up making those more advanced ingredients particularly complicated to handle.
Neil’s advice on the TTM re: first trying each example as if the ties weren’t there is also really helpful. The same applies to dotted notes. You just have to momentarily pretend that the dotted note is actually a tie of the note with another note half its length, and the you pretend that the tie isn’t there. Get the basic underlying rhythm first, then add the connectivity whether in tie or dotted form. And go *really* slowly 🙂
Winnie B., Colorado
A trick for dotted quarter notes is that they are worth 3 8th notes, so take up 3 feet (LRL, or RLR) . Sometimes that provides a handle.
Laurie Richards, Nebraska
The short answer is yes. It’s not as straightforward as as transcribing singles, doubles, quads but it’s important.
Also in Read ‘n Play volume 1 which supplements Reading Rhythm, I provide lots of extra practice with ties, dotted notes and rests.
A quick suggestion for couting aloud a dotted quarter followed by an 8th notes:
“left, right, left, right” while clapping only on the first “left” and the second “right”. This is terminology they are familiar with and will help them ‘get’ this particular rhythm. Lots of repetition is in order!