What does the fletcher music method teach?

For sharing experiences with the Fletcher Music Method.
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BottleNeck Baby
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What does the fletcher music method teach?

Post by BottleNeck Baby » Mon Aug 22, 2005 5:04 pm

I have read the sample passages from the "what is fletcher music method?" ebook and want to buy it but im not sure what it teaches. Does it teach perfect pitch or is it just about a teacher who could teach perfect pitch? Also, I'm not a teacher but I'm interested in getting the teachers guide just so I would have a more in depth comprehension of fletchers teaching style. would getting the teachers guide be beneficial, in even the slightest way, to some kid learning by himself (me)?

aruffo
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Post by aruffo » Mon Aug 22, 2005 8:22 pm

The Fletcher Music Method is designed for a music instructor who is handling a group of grade school children (aged 5-12ish).

The system is designed to teach music in a way which promotes absolute pitch and musical thinking. It is not explicitly designed to teach absolute pitch because, at the time, Fletcher felt it was more important for a child to have a complete feeling for musical sound, and so absolute pitch (according to her own reports) is a product of, but not a goal of, her teaching.

If you aren't teaching music to children, I would recommend the "What Is" book, but not the teacher's guide. In "What Is", I believe Fletcher offers some very important perspectives on what it means to be a musician, and how music education and musical thinking should best be learned. I think every musician can benefit from her insight. The teacher's guide is the practical application of the principles set forth by "What Is"; although it's possible that a musician who is teaching himself might find some value in it, the teacher's guide is mainly the games and instructional procedures intended for groups of grade school children.

cjhealey
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Post by cjhealey » Sat Jun 23, 2007 2:38 am

I wonder with a lot of these child-aimed methods if they would work if an adult could break free of their social expectations and actually carry out the exercises in the same manner as a child would.

Also, I noticed a picture here:
http://www.aruffo.com/eartraining/copp.htm
with the following description

"...This photograph shows one of her means of teaching children modulation. By this simple piece of apparatus, on which different chords can be represented by movable pegs, no less than fifteen different simple ways of modulating can be easily taught to any child. With such a stock of experience, he will know more than the average teacher. Of 700 music teachers, Mrs. Fletcher-Copp says she found only three who could modulate easily and happily, and they did not pretend to understand what they were doing. (Fig. 6.)"

I'd be interested in knowing more about this modulation device, sounds intriguing!

Axeman
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modulation device

Post by Axeman » Tue Aug 12, 2008 5:18 am

I have read the appendix to the Fletcher Method book about the modulation device. It seems easy to make. I'll probably try it soon and then post my experiences.
The key to its use I think is that the chords are easily viewable by the child as they play on the piano because the pegs don't move, unlike your fingers and the Mod Board is right in front of the player. So the patterns of chord shapes (the number of half steps in each chord and the distance of notes between chords) are obvious. And, if you want to mudulate it is simple enough for near (i.e. physically e.g. from key of C to C#, D, B or Bb or perhaps even further away) keys to just see the shape of each chord and move it up or down a step or two. For further away keys the pegs can be moved easily enough or perhaps kept in place and copied with extra pegs using the same half step configuration further up.
Eventually I impagine the Modulation board would become unecessary once the child had had enough experience at the piano.
I am thinking about how to make a similar device for guitar. Hmmm...

cjhealey
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Post by cjhealey » Wed Aug 13, 2008 11:44 pm

Hey,

Could you tell me what sort of stuff the "What is" book covers?

Is it just a generalized talk about different parts of music or does it specifically address rhythm, harmony, dictation etc etc

For example, right now, I have to somehow work out how to perform a two line rhythmic pattern while conducting, singing the top line and tapping the bottom.

Unfortunately for me, this is the first time I've needed to do rhythm drills thus far in my musical training so I'm playing catch-up big time.

I still have to concentrate to tap two rhythms simultaneously.

My musical education was far more general and assumed skills would be learned naturally with time. Not enough time later, I have to be able to do all this stuff I can't.

:-S lol

Any suggestions?

Chris

aruffo
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Post by aruffo » Thu Aug 14, 2008 1:39 am

The "What Is" book is, essentially, a philosophical slap in the face to traditional music education... which is ironic considering its original date of publication, as its message is still just as sharp and, sadly, just as relevant.

Is it possible to tap two different rhythms? I'm no drummer; the only way I'm aware of is to mentally combine the rhythms into a single line (regular, if erratic).

Axeman
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two different rhythms

Post by Axeman » Thu Aug 14, 2008 6:22 am

Yes it is possible to play two different rhythms at once,
Try walking anywhere in a straight line (so the beat of your feet is even) then tap on your lap or side any other rhythm. I do this as practice at playing quarter note triplets and quintuplets and heptuplets etc. Once you get good at it while walking try doing it at a table (drumming your fingers) with each hand. You should be able to get two different rhythms going at once e.g. you can do two beats with your left hand and three with your right evenly spaced so that they take up the same amount of time as the two. Another way to look at it is to divide each of the two beats into 3 thus
123123
and then place the 3 notes at the incidence of every other triplet group...
123123
1 2 3


Have a look at Steve vai web site if you want to try some freaky rhythms

http://www.vai.com/LittleBlackDots/tempomental.html

TS
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Re: two different rhythms

Post by TS » Thu Aug 14, 2008 8:16 am

I don't think it's possible to tap two different rhythms. The easy way to have two different simultaneous rhythms is to combine them into only one rhythm.

Let's say you want to combine a 2-beat rhythm with a 3-beat rhythm. First you find their lowest common denominator, which is 6. Now you take a 6-beat rhythm and place the 2-beat and 3-beat rhythms on top of that, like this:

Code: Select all

6-beat 1 2 3 4 5 6|1 2 3 4 5 6|1 2 3 4 5 6
2-beat *     *     *     *     *     *
3-beat *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *   *

A 2-beat rhythm on it's own goes like "dum-dum, dum-dum".
A 3-beat rhythm goes like "dum-dum-dum, dum-dum-dum".
Both of these together goes like "dum-da-da-dum, dum-da-da-dum", and this single rhythm is what you keep in your mind, not two different rhythms simultaneously.

aruffo
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Post by aruffo » Thu Aug 14, 2008 7:15 pm

What TS describes is what I'm more familiar with. I'm inclined to say that it's not possible to conceive two simultaneous beats, but I don't know the psychological literature on that and I certainly don't know what the wunderkinds can do.

Axeman
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rhythm

Post by Axeman » Fri Aug 15, 2008 3:25 am

Yeah I get what was said above... actually that's what I was trying to achieve with the crotchet triplet thing above.
It was the same as the common denominator thing.

When I am playing crotchet triplets or other tuplets e.g. four quarter notes in the space of three I am aware of the composite rhythm as was explained in the posts above. Yet if you can put one rhythm on autopilot and focus on either the fundamental beat or the tuplet you are trying to perform over it you can actually hear the individual rhythms separately. Admittedly your attention has to flick from one to the other in order to hear both and the combination sound is still there. It is kind of like driving and talking at the same time something has to become automatic or you couldn't do both at once.
I can't imagine that a person trying to learn a composition where there are two time signatures happening simultaneously(there are piano compositions of this nature) would succeed if they were to try to hear and play the composite rhythm of the two parts as the complexity would be too much to handle and probably become artitificial sounding.
Check out Frank Zappa's Black Page transcritiption for poly rhythms that seem to be impossible. It has polyrhythms within plolyrhythms. But Zappa in a gutar player issue on the subject reassured that they are possible to play and also to count.

cjhealey
Posts: 114
Joined: Sat Mar 17, 2007 10:35 am

Post by cjhealey » Fri Aug 15, 2008 5:56 am

What TS describes is what I'm more familiar with. I'm inclined to say that it's not possible to conceive two simultaneous beats, but I don't know the psychological literature on that and I certainly don't know what the wunderkinds can do.


Hey Chris,

Got a link for you which answers your question!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/health/6309033.stm

or

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/ ... 011807.php

Paul Dux's mum used to teach me Science :-) lol I remember her telling me about this a couple of years ago during a class lol

---

As for the other posts, Thanks.

I don't actually have a great deal of trouble sight-reading two rhythm pieces, but when I have to Conduct as well it messes with me.

I can't seem to co-ordinate my arm to move in a smooth conducting manner while tapping one part, and singing the other.

and then NEXT semester it is 3 part rhythms played by tapping your foot on the beat, tapping one part with left, one with right and singing the 3rd.

Try that. If your not a drum player, you'll soon learn to appreciate their co-ordination. LOL

Thus far, I have been doing exactly what you all suggested with the two-part rhythms: Combining them so that they are one rhythm using two hands.

The addition of the third part though... :shock:

Any more suggestions?
Chris

petew83
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Post by petew83 » Fri Aug 15, 2008 11:12 am

while it might be possible, there seems to be an overwhelming tendency for the 2 separate meters to combine into 1 complex meter

paul-donnelly
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Post by paul-donnelly » Sun Aug 17, 2008 1:24 am

petew83 wrote:while it might be possible, there seems to be an overwhelming tendency for the 2 separate meters to combine into 1 complex meter

I don't think it's possible to treat them as two separate meters until you have the combined rhythm down so well you can play it in your sleep. Until you move past the phase where you have to think about what you're playing, your brain too occupied with putting the beats in the right place to think about two meters at once. That's my experience anyway. Once I get a rhythm in my hands it's much easier to take in both parts at once. I'm fairly certain that in coming years it will become even easier. Kind of like visualizing four-dimensional scenes as they meet the 4d eye: at first you've got to expend most of your energy on bookkeeping and making sure the view lines up with the model in your head, but later on you can go on autopilot and focus on the interpretation of what you see.

TS
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Post by TS » Sun Aug 17, 2008 9:38 am

cjhealey wrote:I don't actually have a great deal of trouble sight-reading two rhythm pieces, but when I have to Conduct as well it messes with me.

I can't seem to co-ordinate my arm to move in a smooth conducting manner while tapping one part, and singing the other.

Maybe you need to mentally hum the whole rhythm in your mind, to keep it in one piece, and then add your external hand movements and singing on top of that internal humming.

Some kind of rhythm syllables could help. For example the 2/3 combination rhythm sounds like "dum-da-da-dum", so have the first beat be "dum", and then have the 3-beats be "da" and the 2-beat be "de", so the whole thing becomes "dum-da-de-dah". Now repeat the mantra "dum-da-de-dah" in your mind, and coordinate your external movements so that when you say "dum" in your mind you tap, sing and wave your conducting hand all at once, and when you say "da" you tap your hand, and when you say "de" you sing.

kayanat
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Post by kayanat » Sat Mar 21, 2009 6:46 am

What is the best method book to teach children electric guitar?
There are lots of very good method books for learning classical guitar but I can't find any which teach the electric techniques and also reading music
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