TEACHING Piano Adventures®

Balloons

Lesson Book page 21

let's get started

  1. Here's an easy way to find C-D-E. Look for the 2-black-key group. C-D-E are the keys directly underneath. (Help the student find some groups.)
  2. Circle all the 2-black-keys. Write C-D-E on the white keys.
  3. (On the closed keyboard cover, then on C-D-E) Let your LH rise slowly, as if it were attached to a balloon. Let it come back down slowly and gently. (See video)
  4. Let your LH rise and float over the RH. Your RH can then float out from under and move higher, too. (See video)
  5. Just as these C-D-E groups float up the page, so your balloons will float to the top of the keyboard. (Demonstrate.)
  6. Let's float gently with a duet! (Download duet)
Teach large gestures before small ones.

explore and create

An analogy can paint a picture or suggest a feeling.

pedagogy pointers

This first piece for the white keys teaches C-D-E as a group. It also directs the student's eyes to move up the page just as the hands move up the keyboard. Playing with the middle fingers directs the weight toward the center of the hand.

Since this is the first time the hands cross over each other to go higher, the gestures involved should be prepared. This can be done on the closed keyboard cover before trying the gestures on the keys. The hand must first rise and sink gently, as if tied to a balloon.

This preparation eliminates the need to look for specific C-D-E groups—a good way to begin.

accompaniments on disk

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see it in action

Teaching Video 20

Hannah and Emily test their balloons in place first, but soon see how the balloons cross over and float out from under. Once the moves are prepared, it's time to try the piece. Don't forget to float back to your lap! Since the teacher holds down the pedal, those balloons really shimmer.

Hannah brings the balloons down, and the peppy duet helps them sink quickly.

Emily listens intently and copies those patterns without missing a trick. Her eyes are shut, but her ears are wide open!,

Ask Yourself

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