Thursday, February 10, 2011

PA Primer Reference Sheet for Teachers

I blogged about this a few weeks back, but it's taken me this long to finally get started on the project! In the coming months, I hope to create teacher help-sheets for each of the Piano Adventures levels with information on what students learn in each book, the concepts they should have a firm grasp on before moving ahead, some common struggles many of my students encounter, some of the more popular songs, etc.

At this point, I only have a few students in the Primer Level, but it's the one I'm most familiar with, so that's where I started. I attempted to color-coordinate each section; for example, I used purple since that's the color of the Primer books, pink for the technique portion as it's the color of the Technique & Artistry Book header, green for the supplementary section as it's the Performance header color, and so on and so forth. As you can see, this form is pretty empty at this point, but I wanted to post to get some feedback.

Please feel free to use this form in your own lesson planning and pass along any suggestions on how I could tweak it or what else I might want to include in a given category. You can download the form here.


  1. I am really impressed with your charting the course. I like the different colors and I could look it over easily. I will gladly use it, please continue. Thank-you!

  2. This is great! I have lots to add in the "problem pieces" and teaching ideas categories but I'm going to have to grab my copies of the primer books and sit down with them. Ill be back later tonight after lessons and the kiddos / hubby are asleep :)

  3. Student favorites: My Invention (Lesson pg 37)
    Rodeo (lesson pg 44), Come See the Parade (lesson pg 46-47), Frankenstein (Performance), Twinkle Twinkle (Performance)
    Problem/tricky spots: Almost every one of my students have had difficulty with Allegro pg 49 in Lesson. The difficulty lies in the coordination to play the LH whole note and hold it down while the RH plays. What I usually do is have them become comfortable with the piece without the whole note and then add them in later. I have found it to be helpful to have students look at their hand when playing those measures the first couple of times.
    Russion Sailor Dance pg 45 Lesson I have found that some students have difficulty with the dotted half/quarter note pattern found in measures 7 and 10. Before beginning this piece I will do Rhythm Clapbacks with the student using this rhythm until I feel it is secure, I then ask the student to find the rhythm in the piece.
    I probably have more but I feel like I'm highjacking your post ! :) Again, great job on the chart. I'm super interested to see if other teachers have had similar issues to the ones I've mentioned here.

  4. Thank you both so much for your feedback! Please don't feel you're hijacking ;) I put this up so I could get some more ideas. I'll be working on updating the form as well as continuing to the next level, but I'm always open to more suggestions on what to add or how to change the format.

  5. I've done some further editing on this sheet- it's now two pages long. I'll be updating it on a semi-regular basis from here on out. Thanks for all your suggestions :)