Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Fingering Trainer IV

Here is another fingering trainer that I found.  This fingering trainer is for violin.  Click here to check out the link.  This one works very similar to the one for Clarinet, where the student selects the correct fingering for the pitch that is displayed.  Below you can see what it looks like.

Unlike the other trainer, you can actually select the key that you want to work on and the fingerings will coincide with the finger pattern for that specific key. On the example below, you can see that the fingerings are going to be selected from G Major.  So only the notes of G Major are highlighted on the screen.  This also helps reinforce Key Signature recognition.

 After the key is selected, the user simple clicks on the "start" button and the trainer begins.  Below is what that looks like.

The student now clicks on the appropriate string and tape position of the note asked for and the results are instantly recorded.  The amount completed, number of errors, total score, and time are all recorded.  It is a fun challenge to see how fast the students can accurately complete the fingerings.

Fingering Trainer III

Here is some more on fingering trainer.  The picture below illustrates how the correct answer is displayed.  One cool thing about the answer that is given is that  the student can see all of the alternate fingerings available for the specific note.  The first one is the standard fingering and then the other options (labled 2 3 4 )  This feature is really nice because it shows the students all of the possibilities for fingerings.

The page will show overall achievement of the student by giving the student's percentage and score for all questions answered.  Below is a shot of what the complete screen that the student sees looks like.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Finering Trainer II

So there are many fingering charts out there for people to use as references.  You can see some examples if you click here.  Most of them are simple charts with the fingerings marked, which although it's helpful, it's not interactive and certainly isn't as fun as one of the finger trainer sites.  Here is what most fingering charts look like.

As you can see from the chart, it is pretty basic and does offer some alternate fingerings, however, it isn't an effective tool for students to be able to test themselves.

Finger Trainer I

Here is a fantastic tool that I found to help students with their fingers.  Lots of beginning, and even more advanced students, often have trouble remember fingerings for certain notes.  Although fingerings can be found in fingering charts there isn't always a good way to have students test their understanding of fingerings on their own.  With Fingering Trainer, students can have an interactive activity in which to practice their knowledge.  The fingering trainer allows the student to highlight the appropriate keys or fingers used to play a note that is asked of them.  After they select the fingering that they think is correct, they click the submit button to see the results.  Below is a shot of the home interface.

 As you can see, it is a real image of the instrument and the student simply highlights the keys used.  In this case, the note asked for is a C natural.  There is also an option for a bonus question that asks if the note is usually Flat, Sharp, or in Tune naturally on the instrument.  In the picture below you can see what it looks like when the students has made their choice for the correct fingering.  The keys are highlighted in blue.

Once the selection is made and the student clicks the submit button.  The correct answer appears.  I can see students being able not only to test themselves but being able to work with classmates to help each other with some practice that would be note only fun, but helpful for reinforcing instrument fingers.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Prezi IV

Exploring prezi has been great fun and I have found that there is a bit more to prezi than just a simple presentation tool.  You can use prezi to create a kind of social networking with friends.  You can create and send prezis as greeting cards and announcements.  The customization of a prezi seems to be almost limitless.  There is a very useful blog about prezi that you can read about all of the amazing things that people are doing with prezis.  To view the blog click here.    Here is a video of prezi "meeting" being used in a school setting.

I'm seeing there with this expansion of prezi as more than just a presentation tool, that students can let their imaginations and creativity run free to create information portfolios, shared tools that can be used and added to by other students in creating a common chain of information.

Tonometrics III

I've moved on the the rhythm generator of the tonometrics site and found that this application is rather difficult to master.  The test plays a rhythmic segment for you to listen to then, plays it a second time that may or may not have a very slight variation in the rhythm.  It is up to you to then decide if the rhythms were the same or different by clicking the correct button as illustrated below:

Normally I would think that this is a great skills test, however, the rhythms are quite complex and the instrumentation if very dense which makes it very difficult to distinguish the subtle changes in rhythm.  I think for this particular test to be useful in my classroom I would like the rhythms to be more simplistic and that the density of instrumentation be much MUCH less.  This part of tonometrics I don't find to be very well developed.  It's just like jumping to the end novel without reading the opening so there was nothing to build on.  You can go here to try your luck.