An Easy DIY Felt Music Staff to Practice Note Names
[Today’s article was written by Gena Mayo and is part of the 31 Days of Music in Our Homeschool Series.]
One of my favorite classes in college (I majored in K-12 music education) was called elementary music methods. We studied about the different theories and methodologies of how to teach kids, like with Orff and Kodaly, we observed great teachers and taught kids, and we created manipulatives that we could use in our own classrooms one day. One of my favorite manipulative is a DIY felt staff to practice note names.
It’s quite simple to make.
- Cut a piece of felt
- Draw five straight lines with a Sharpie
- Cut ovals for the notes out of a different color of felt.
- Make a treble clef, bass clef, sharps, flats, and naturals by drawing on pieces of felt or fabric. You can also make ledger lines if you like.
Here are some of the ways you can use it with your kids:
- Teach them the notes of the staff. Many like to use a fun sentence to remember them, like Great Big Dogs Fight Animals for the lines of the bass clef.
- Have kids recognize whether notes are repeating, stepping, or skipping.
- Do a race. Say a note name and let them put the felt note in place as quickly as they can.
- Practice writing scales, triads, broken triads, and chords in various inversions.
- Spell words with the notes, such as BEEF, BAD, ABE, and CAFE.
- Have them write out a phrase from a piece of music they are playing or singing.
Do you have a fun DIY hands-on music idea? Please share it with us!