Gorilla in the Tree
Lesson Book page 36
- Bass F
- Recognizing Bass F on the staff
- Building the LH arch playing melodic fifths
let's get started
- Let's warm up. (Place student's hand over Bass F and Middle C. Demonstrate how to rock back and forth.)
- I'll play some short rhythmic patterns, like C-C-F. (Demonstrate.) You copy me.
- Now you make up some patterns, and I'll copy you.
- (Show how Bass F sits on the second line.) Would you circle all the Bass Fs in this piece?
- Let's see if the gorilla can swing from branch to branch. (Play the piece.)
The Bass Clef can also be called the F clef!
explore and create
600 Pound GorillaWhat if this gorilla invited one of his bigger friends to swing with him? How would a 600 lb. gorilla sound? (Play the accompaniment slower and heavier.) (See video)
800 Pound Gorilla(Knock on the side of the piano.) Who's there? An 800 lb. gorilla! (Play the accompaniment even more slowly and loudly.)
The Gorilla GangMore gorillas are coming to play. How do you think their music would sound? Can you play with two hands?
Jungle DanceYou play the drums, and I'll play the flute. (Show the student how to play a short drum pattern using F-C. Your flute melody could use the F Lydian mode [B-natural].)
Bass F sits on the second line.
pp. 22-23 The Bass Clef or F Clef
- The student learns to draw a bass clef, trace the F line, and chooses to draw a bass or treble clef to match each picture.
- Sightreading and ear-training continue with Middle C and Bass F!
Technique & Artistry
p. 17 The Left-Handed Cookie Cutter
- Playing LH fifths to reinforce F-C keys, rounded hand shape, and arm weight parallels The Great Cookie Chase for RH.
- Coach the student to contrast forte or piano with heavier and lighter arm weight.
- Ask student, "Can you land on the next lower C without missing a beat?"
- Playing an octave higher, model a good hand shape and encourage the student to move quickly down the keys!
Attention now shifts to the left hand and the Bass Clef. Learning Bass F on the staff extends the reading range. Having the student copy short patterns before learning a piece prepares the student for the technique that will be needed to play it. Reading then becomes easier and more fluent because the fingers are ready.
Simple two-note pieces are ideal for exploring the keyboard range, discovering dynamics and tone, and playing hands together.
accompaniments on disk
- CD Tracks 40-41
- MIDI File 20