My all time favorite apps to use in the studio are apps that I can use directly with the piano either by midi or by mic. SightRead Plus listens to the students playing by the iPad mic, so no midi connection is needed. Another favorite feature of mine in apps is when I could add individual user names to keep track of progress. Not only is this great for the studio during lab time, but also for families who want to take advantage of apps at home and have more then one sibling in a family taking lessons! I wish all music ed apps had this feature. As you can guess, SightRead Plus includes this feature as well which immediately pushes it up high on my must use list.
The wonderful thing about SightRead Plus is the fact that it drills in all keys. There are 20 exercises in each hand in each key. (20 levels make 400 total exercises in each key) My only wish is that it can include hands together exercises.
Each exercise is short 4 measure exercises which lends itself up for not only success for the student but creates a perfect tool to supplement during lesson time as it wouldn’t take up much valuable lesson time. Another helpful tool is the metronome which allows the user to change tempo. This is especially valuable for a more challenging exercise.
Levels 1-3 begins with basic rhythm- quarter, half, whole and dotted half. These are in 4/4 and 3/4 time signatures. It sticks with 2nd and 3rd intervals.
Level 4 introduces 2/4 time and eighth notes. Level 5 is a review level reviewing all the concepts found in level 1-3.
Level 6 adds in the quarter rest. Level 7 adds in 4th and 5th intervals. Then level 8 adds dotted quarter and 6/8 time. Level 9 continues with the dotted quarter rhythm in 4/4 time. Then level 10 concludes by adding in the eighth rest.
When it is time for the student to begin an exercise the simply push the record button. It will begin with a one measure count off before they begin playing. They will then see a green snowflake icon progressing over each note encouraging students to keep going in a steady tempo. After the student finishes they wait to receive their score. The score is based on rhythm and note accuracy. If they passed they get a gold star, if they received the high score for that exercise fireworks go off! Very motivating for students to shoot for the high score! (I even liked seeing those fireworks!) Because each student has an individual user name, their scores are saved and they will be able to view their progress.
Now if you didn’t think the sight-reading portion was enough, it also includes 5 finger patterns in every key where students can earn points for playing correctly. I love this!
SightRead Plus is a winner in my book and an app I will be frequently using in my studio with my students. At $7.99, it may be a little more then your standard music apps, but well worth it. Melissa Harris, President of Cape Cod Music Apps mentioned there are more music apps in the works including a pre-reading app to use with 3-5 year olds so keep your eye out!
Now for the fun part! Melissa Harris offered to giveaway this awesome app to one lucky Foxx Piano Studio blog reader. To enter leave a comment below.
Deadline to enter is by THIS Wednesday, September 11th, 10:00pm (mountain time). (*Winner MUST respond within 72 hours of announcement or another winner will be chosen*) The winner will be announced on this blog and on the Foxx Piano Studio Facebook page by Thursday, September 12th. Be sure you subscribe to the blog and on our Facebook page so you don’t miss out seeing if you are a winner!