Fun Ways to Practice Piano : The Three Time Game

Bonnie Pantely
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What’s the first thought that comes into your mind when you think of practicing piano? Maybe, UGH!, maybe, I’m tired, maybe, this will take soooo long! What’s the first thought that comes into your mind if someone asks you to play charades, yeah, sure! How about playing a video game, first thought, can hardly wait! These activities take time and effort, yet mentally it seems fun. The key word here is that they are both games! Games are fun! It may seem like a new concept, but playing piano is really a game! You look at a screen (sheet of music) and the notes(letters A-G) tell you what buttons to push on the piano (keys, A-G). This game doesn’t even have to take that long a time to make progress if you play the Three Time Game.

The Three Time Game can be used for a measure, a passage and/or the entire piece of music you are learning. Choose three objects, light, small and fun, such as candy or coins, and place three of them on one side of your piano or keyboard. Play the measure, passage or song one time through, and place one candy or coin on the other side of your piano or keyboard. Repeat this process two more times and you are done! You can even eat your candy or save your coins to reward yourself with a pizza! I’ve timed my students playing the Three Time Game and they are shocked to discover that it took most of them about three minutes to play through three times what they were working on! Three minutes a day can accomplish a lot!

So the next time you think about practicing piano, grab your candy, or coins, maybe even use your stop watch on your phone and say that you can hardly wait to play the Three Time Game!

http://www.npr.org/sections/deceptivecadence/2012/06/18/155282684/getting-kids-to-practice-music-without-tears-or-tantrums