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Here music symbols are turned into characters the kids will remember
K, 1, 2, 3
Title – Reading Bass and Treble Clefs with “Mama G and Papa F”
By – Melanie Freeman
Primary Subject – Music
Grade Level – K-3
Remembering the names of music symbols can be made fun by turning them into characters the kids will remember!
Using a white board, I’ll first tell my kids that I have a couple friends I’d like to introduce them to. I then draw the treble clef sign on the board, then add a smiley face and curly hair to the top of it. I introduce her as my friend “Mama G”.
I explain that Mama G is married to “Papa F,” where I’ll then draw the bass clef sign, turning the dot on the end into a nose and adding eyes and a smiley face. With the two dots off to the right, I’ll add a bow tie next to them.
Together, Mama G and Papa F have a LOT of children. So many children, in fact, that they have to live in two separate “houses.” I draw out the staffs, have the kids count with me how many lines, and then I’ll put an imaginary roof over the top. They live in “Staff Houses.”
Then I introduce them to the “babies.” Mama G’s has line babies and space babies. I draw whole notes on the lines, then put little happy faces in them and maybe some hair. Explain that the “line babies” have lines going through their heads. Each baby has a name… Baby E, Baby G, etc. We have a saying to help us remember their names: Every Good Boy Does Fine. I do the same thing with the “space babies.” Papa F’s babies go with the same format.
You can get as creative as you want, but the kids LOVE Mama G and Papa F. Once the kids have learned the letter names, I point out how Mama G’s “pregnant belly” points to Baby G, and how Papa F’s bow tie points to Baby F, which is where they get the names. Gradually I start drawing the symbols without the faces and add-ons and the kids are reading music wonderfully.
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