Merrily We Roll Along
Lesson Book page 22
- This C-D-E melody for RH and LH uses steps and repeated notes
- Using a rounded hand shape on the white keys
- Tracking notes on the page without looking at the hands
let's get started
- Circle each time this rhythm pattern is used in this piece:
- Find C-D-E groups with fingers 2-3-4. Let's play a game! You put your hands in your lap. I'll count with closed eyes. How fast can you find the position and shout, "Ready!"
- Play and keep hands rounded like the sun in the picture. Pretend a little boat is under each hand!
- Play with the duet. (Play an "intro" of the last two measures to set the tempo. Together, gently lift hands into lap at the end.)
Emphasize rhythm patterns—not reading note to note.
explore and create
Sail on 3-Black-Keys"Sail" fingers 2-3-4 onto the 3-black-keys. Play again.
Sail to F-G-ALet the wind blow the sailboat down the lake. Help students "swoosh" fingers to F-G-A and play again.
Sail to G-A-BThe wind kicks up! "Swoosh" fingers 2-3-4 higher to G-A-B and play again.
Sail to A-B-CA storm is brewing! "Swoosh" fingers 2-3-4 up to A-B-C. Sing "Scar-i-ly we roll a-long, o'er the deep, dark sea." (Download duet)
At this stage pieces can be played in any range.
Technique & Artistry
pp. 10-11 Merrily I Move Up/Down
- Discuss memorizing a short musical pattern and how this can be repeated in higher or lower octaves.
- Student memorizes the LH pattern on p. 10 and repeats it lower, keeping a round hand shape.
- Play the RH as a special ending to Merrily We Roll Along, Lesson Book, p. 26. Play a high C as the final note.
pp. 6-7 Hot Cross Buns
On the closed keyboard lid
- Pretend to sprinkle "yeast" on the student's hands. Let hands rise to form round "hot cross buns".
- Tap the rhythm with rounded hands: Count "1-2 1-2 1-2-3-4," etc. Play hot forte and cool piano sounds.
- Play the duet with the student at a "quick-bake" tempo. Try for 30 seconds or less!
Transposing provides repetition and introduces new sounds—such as playing in a minor key.
Awareness of rhythm patterns promotes good reading habits and musicianship. In this piece the use of quarter, half, and whole notes is reinforced, as is movement by steps and repetition. The middle fingers of each hand continue to keep the weight centered.
Awareness of melodic patterns—step up, step down, repeat—also promotes good reading habits and musicianship. This is the basis of fluent playing.
accompaniments on disk
- CD Tracks 16-17
- MIDI File 8