The Dance Band
Lesson Book page 40
- Time signature
- 4/4 meter
- To understand 4/4 meter
- To recognize and respond to rhythm patterns
- To push off the LH third finger with energy
let's get started
- Can you tell time on a clock? In music we "tell time", but in a different way. The 4/4 at the start of this piece is like a clock. (Explain 4/4 time signature.)
- Would you like to be the drummer for The Dance Band? Let's tap the rhythm on the keyboard cover (or a drum). Use both hands. Then tap with your hands as they are used in the piece. (See Video)
- Can you point out three measures that step up D-E-F?
- How many measures are the same? Try them out.
- Look carefully. Can you find a C five-finger scale that steps down?
- Is your dance band ready to roll?
4/4 meter implies an impulse on the downbeat.
explore and create
Time Puzzle(Write several measures of notes in 4/4 time, without bar lines.) Can you add bar lines to measure the time? What tells you you're at the end?
Your Own Time PuzzlesMake up some time puzzles for me.
Fun on OneThis band has rhythm! Can you stamp and clap on all the count 1s (downbeats)?
Kick It UpLet's get this band rockin'. Pick your speed and turn up the amps! (See Video)
Rhythm patterns are part of 4/4 meter. Remember—music is not math!
Technique & Artistry
p. 18 Drummer with The Dance Band
- This exercise promotes a changing RH position, shifting the hand up stepwise.
- Before looking at the music, have the student brace RH finger 3 with the thumb and shift from Middle C to D, to E, and to F.
- Look at the music. Circle this rhythm pattern three times.
- Drop into Bass F with a braced finger 3 on the downbeat. What technique secrets are you using?
p. 26 The Time Signature
- Explore 4/4 time by drawing barlines and completing measures.
p. 14 Classical March, p. 15 Rex, the Tyrannosaurus
- For Classical March, enjoy Ferdinand Beyer's step-and-repeat pattern while reviewing notes of the C five-finger scale.
- Make way for arm weight with Rex the Tyrannosaurus. It opens with the three guide notes (Middle C, Treble G, and Bass F) followed by a stepwise marching melody.
Playing in 4/4 meter has already been experienced in many pieces, and rhythm patterns common to this meter have also become part of the student's rhythm "vocabulary". The step taken here is to identify 4/4 meter and explain what a time signature does. At this point it makes sense to count 1-2-3-4, but you could still revert to counting "1" for each quarter, "1-2" for each half note, and so on, or use this type of counting as an alternate.
Once again, as in My Invention, the left hand plays only Bass F. Here is another chance to have the left-hand third finger spring off the key to set the downbeat and to release weight from the shoulder.
accompaniments on disk
- CD Tracks 48-49
- MIDI File 24