Feature Friday: Tuner and Metronome
March 7, 2014 | by Michael Ferry
About Feature Friday:
Successful implementation of SmartMusic can improve and streamline so many of the tasks a music teacher does on a daily basis, both inside and outside your classroom. That being said, it’s human nature to fall into a routine that may not be using all of SmartMusic’s capabilities. This blog series will focus on a new feature of SmartMusic every week to show potential uses and benefits for your students, staff, and administration. Hopefully you can find the time to implement these features and add to your SmartMusic “bag of tricks”. If so, please reach out to us in the comments section or via social media and let us know.
Tuner and Metronome:
Every skilled musician will tell you that a tuner and metronome are essential for a productive practice session. SmartMusic’s digital tuner allows students to see and hear their pitch, and make the appropriate adjustments to play in tune. This can be done before (in practice tools) or during (upper right corner of opened repertoire) their practice session. This quick access to intonation feedback results in greater individual accuracy and a better ensemble sound when arriving at school.
Practicing with a metronome is just as important as a tuner, and SmartMusic’s metronome can be set to both standard and compound time signatures. Playing with a rhythmic reference brings a level of consistency to a practice session that builds skills in the shortest amount of time. It also makes it easier to track progress by assigning a value to the work. For example: “I can play from mm.9 – mm.16 at _____ BPM.”
This pitch and rhythmic feedback offers your students a meaningful and motivating way to practice, and students that have a SmartMusic subscription at home have access to a tuner and microphone every time they warm up and practice.
Teachers also tell us that this is an important feature to communicate to parents, because a tuner and metronome are often times more expensive than a SmartMusic student subscription. By eliminating a tuner and metronome and adding SmartMusic to your required supplies, you can implement SmartMusic with your students without breaking the budget.
Using the SmartMusic Tuner and Metronome in your Classroom:
Try starting your class period with the SmartMusic tuner and metronome. This will reinforce good habits, and demonstrate to your students how they should warm up on their own. Chris Grifa (Creekside Middle School) recently let us sit in on one of his beginning band classes. This video is a quick look at how he starts his day. Note his ability to move around the classroom and motivate individuals without stopping the group rehearsal.
See you next week for another Feature Friday blog.