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  • Diane Hidy

All Cooped Up

Updated: Apr 10


Is it just me, or are you feeling cooped up these days?


I feel like I'm spending all my brain power trying to master the technology to do things that I don't even really want to do. The actual music I'm using, the thing about which I care the most, has been feeling like an afterthought.


My youngest students have been the most frustrating. They have a delightful selection of books at home, many of which I don't have copies of because, um, why would I need them? They bring the book to the lesson, we use it. Except now. I needed more pieces around the level of Attention Grabbers Book One. Pieces hovering between Primer and Level One of a method book.


I've been getting email after email from teachers asking for help with this problem. What could they do about not having copies of all the Method Books their students use? Not to mention all the other supplemental books?


Personally, I needed pieces for Charlie and Thomas and Natalie and Olivia and I needed them yesterday.


It was hard, but I took all my frustration and anger and turned it into a little book of pieces called All Cooped Up. I thought the title and the lighthearted music might give us a chance to find the humor in our situation and still give me dynamite pieces to teach.


I hope you'll like All Cooped Up. I taught the pieces online this week to my students and they loved them. Woo-hoo!


You can see sample pages of all the pieces or purchase All Cooped Up at the store at TeachWithDiane. It costs less than $5 for the studio license (instantly download and send it to as many students as you'd like) because who suddenly has a big budget for music?


(If you're already a member of TeachWithDiane, the piece is included at no charge with your membership.)





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© 2019 by Diane Hidy

You'll wonder how you ever taught without this 32-page book. I made these cards for my students to give them plenty of opportunities to practice all the different skills they were acquiring. This series starts with the simplest possible rhythmic patterns on the Landmark notes Middle C, Bass F and Treble G. Each set becomes incrementally more difficult.

Here are a few of the many different ways to use these cards:

  • Encourage students to write in their own fingering. This paves the way for making true fingering choices later on

  • Circle the thirds before starting to read the flashcards. This helps the student focus on the difference between steps and skips.

  • Help your student write in their own staccatos and slurs. Try them out. Talk to them about why they do or don't like them. 

  • Help the student add dynamics and phrase marks.

  • Print these in their entirety and use them as a book.

  • Print them on heavy paper or card stock and cut them into separate cards. Trying sending home a set with a student and ask them to become proficient with each one. At the next lesson, mix them up and play them in random order. It’s a nice combination of preparation and reading.