Practice Tool • March 1, 2019

DIY Note Game

By Miss Candace

One of my favorite side projects is to adjust or create games that I can play with my students to support something they have been working on. Many of you know my passion for fun board games, so I’m excited to share this hack with you!

Using an existing snakes/chutes and ladders game (or a printable one if you like – I love this one) you can turn it into a note value counting game! Replace the spinner or dice the game comes with by making a note value dice of your own. Using blank acrylic dice you can write on or making them out of paper yourself, instead of just having the dots/pips for kiddos to count write in different values of notes and they have to tell you how many beats it is so they can move that number of spaces! For younger players, I like to utilize quarter notes, half notes, pairs of 8th notes, rests, and even adding them together to include a little math. Teachers are sneaky that way.

I have found this game to be very helpful for those that have a hard time remembering in 4/4 time how many beats each of these notes gets – and this is a repetition practice they don’t mind! For more intermediate/advanced players, you can change the game parameters to not be based in 4/4 time but perhaps in 6/8 time or 4/8 time, depending on the types of meters they are working on. (You could be very tricky and add triplets to a dice…)

I hope you enjoy this fun game in your practice! Don’t forget to use fun game pieces – my students love picking their odd monsters/lego people/food-shaped erasers. Have you altered any other games into music games for your child? Share them here!

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