As you make your studio plans for the fall, consider adding Musical Suites to your bag of tricks! How 'Bout It Games recently sent me a set of Musical Suites cards to review. They are a hit with my students, and they offer a fun way to reinforce students' understanding of musical terms and symbols.
The deck has 76 cards, arranged in suites of symbols. For instance, there are 3 quarter note cards in red, yellow, and purple; 3 quarter rest cards in red, yellow, and purple, etc. The deck includes note and rest values, dynamics, and tempo words. There are also reference cards which show how to arrange the other cards in ordinal value from least to greatest, a necessary skill for some of the games. The instructions offer several different games that can be played with the deck, including two solitaire games. The cards feel just like a regular deck of playing cards and come in a handy plastic case.
Recently, I invited a couple of my students to try out Musical Suites after their lesson. We played Una Carta which is similar to Uno. Because they were very familiar with Uno, they caught on quickly to the rules. It must have looked fun because when my daughter walked through, she asked to join us, and after the students went home, she said, "Can we play that card game again?"
I'm looking forward to introducing the two solitaire versions to my students. I have several pairs of siblings in my studio. While one sibling has a lesson, the other does theory on the computer, but never for the full 45 minutes. Musical Suites will offer another activity to engage the student while she waits.
I'll be suggesting to my families that they consider purchasing a set of cards for family game nights at home. Homeschoolers would also find these to be a great tool! If you'd like a set, you can purchase them at the HBI Games website. They'll also be available at the upcoming National Conference on Keyboard Pedagogy (July 28-30) at the Music Educator's Marketplace booth. Hope you'll give them a try!