Classes and Game Templates

Music Theory Card Games
Remove black notes
We replace them with notes that teach music theory through the back door of learning
where there are no roadblocks or short circuits

April Fool’s Joke – 4 Weeks of Classes
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Symbols – 12 Weeks of Classes
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Musical Terms Board Game
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Musical Morse Code Game Templates
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Violin – Master Class –Module 1 -Pre-Twinkle Parts of the Violin and bow

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One bit of information is presented through a large picture followed by a series of descriptions. With each pass through the book, a new description can be added. Eventually, the part and its use are understood without extra effort. Enjoy Learning the names of the parts of an instrument is foundational to the study of that instrument. Instructions can be laser-focused by the teacher and carried out by the student without terms like: “Put your thumb on the ‘thing-a-ma-jig’ while you are bringing the ‘whachamacallit’ to the ‘bottom’. Teachers can use the book on their computers to teach the parts of the instrument. Be sure to check out the playing card games “Go Fish” and “Memory for Non-Readers”. Templates are available. Next, get acquainted with the strings on the violin and the position needed to play with quality.


Violin Beginner – Know Your Strings

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Remember to have a great playing position and great bow hold as you attempt this first challenge. Play the rhythms Charlie Brown and Snoopy, Strawberries – Strawberries, See You Later Alligator, I Love (sh) Mom


Violin – Master Class – Beginner Bowing Speed Exercises

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9 classes of songs and games using only the open strings


Violin – Master Class – Let Your Fingers do the Walking – Exercise play-alongs

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5 Classes of exercises and practice on your fingers in the first position. 1st finger on the A string songs with sheet music and play-along music. Second finger on the A string songs and sheet music. Mary had a Little Lamb. Digital Books – Let Your Fingers Do the Walking. Songs for the third finger on the A string and Songs for the first finger on the E string. This book sets you up to play Twinkle and the songs in the Twinkle Master Class


Violin – MasterClass – Lunch Anyone – Let’s make a musical sandwich

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Make a sandwich means to learn the structure of a piece of music. You will learn rhythms and put them together into a song. Starting with practice songs for just the individual fingers you will quickly learn the proper placement of your fingers. By the time you are done this module, you will be playing lots of tunes. Mary had a little lamb, Hot Cross Buns, and the rhythm sandwiches.


This is a big one: ALL 7 PRE-TWINKLE CLASSES FOR 3 MONTHS

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If you have any interest in the Whole Enchilada: Please contact me at carolanderson@scalesarentjustafishthingschool.com

The Whole Enchilada – Classes at your level and at your speed

If you are a violin student and would like personal support, the ability to move through the material from Twinkle to Vivaldi and the Bach Double Concerto – at your unique personal speed – then this one time offer is perfect for your needs. You will have the ability to Face-time me- (a Suzuki teacher for 30 years), email support and mp4 videos, mp3 audio, downloadable books, sheet music and music theory games and templates. It is the whole enchilada. As you progress, new material will be opened for you. To move on you will need to spend a little time with me either online or send me a video of your progress, making sure you understand the music and have done the work.  You will be required to memorize certain pieces of music so you can pull it out of your memory at any time. We will schedule a time to talk after each session or we can wait until you feel ready and set the time then. No stress …normally $2,000 but not today. One Time Offer $1000.00 for the year.


Violin – Master Class – Twinkle Class of Gum Drop Notes & Nursery Rhymes To Play

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Hold onto your bow because it is going to be flying now. So many new songs to play. Twinkle, Baa Baa Black Sheep, ABC Song, This Old Man, Lightly Row, A All The Way, Song of the Wind, Row Row Row Your Boat, Rain Rain Go Away, Pussy Cat, Pease Porridge Hot, Diddle Diddle Dumplin, Chippy (Go Tell Aunt Rhody) London Bridge is Falling Down, Five Little Ducks, The Wheels on the Bus, Three Blind Mice, Old Mac Donald, Ring Around the Rosie,


Violin – Master Class – The Guppy School

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The Guppies is the level after the Twinklers. It is ‘Book One (level 3). Pre-Twinkle, Twinkle, Guppies, Salmons and Graduates make up Book one. Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing is an amazing method of teaching music theory and sight-reading at the same time, while having fun. Every possible crutch to learning is given. The method uses the concept of nurturing into learning not testing so our brains don’t set up a roadblock before we get started with learning to sight-read music. This volume of ‘The Big Book of Gum Drop Notes’ book one, includes both color-coded notes with stems indicating the string the note is played on and the notehead indicating which note is played and black notes. The following songs are included: Hey Diddle Diddle A Frog Went a Courtin’ A Peanut sat on a Railroad Track Hickory Dickory Dock Oh Dear What Can the Matter Be Here We Go Around the Mulberry Bush Anchors Aweigh O Come Little Children Long Long Ago May Song Old MacDonald Had a Farm Allegro


Violin – Master Class – Salmons

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The tunes in this level of the Big Book of Gum Drop Notes are a bit of a challenge. Salmon swim against the current. It is a challenge for them but they are mono-focused. They want to accomplish the task. This is what will be required of us in this level of playing. Using the ‘gumdrop notes’ makes it easier. Almost too easy. It doesn’t seem to be an upstream battle. It isn’t our goal to become sophisticated or classy. Our goal is to learn to sight-read music as if it were a second language. Learning happens best when we are having fun. Most of all, our purpose is to ignite our sleeping brains, by using music as the catalyst, to pull each of us through whatever it is that challenges us. The Gum Drop Notes are an amazing system of color-coded notes structured to teach music theory without our being aware. Here are a list of the tunes: Perpetual Motion Doubles – Perpetual Motion – Solo – Alouette – Andantino – Ring Around the Rosie – Allegretto – Animal Fair – All the Pretty Little Ponies – Happy Birthday – Ode to Joy – Etude – Solo – Etude Doubles Bingo – Solo Bingo with rests


Violin – MasterClass – Graduates Book One

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The Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing method works so quickly and efficiently that students fly through the curriculum, memorizing along the way. Why? Because every modality is addressed. And with that, each student is learning through their own unique learning style. Color-coding notes, play-along music, hints along the way to prevent anything incorrect from being learned, all makes this not only efficient but a yummy way to learn, practice and work until you master the results. Gum Drop Notes aren’t sophisticated and classy but they take a student through a ‘dark forest’ of the unknown task and make it enjoyable. Violinists can assure themselves that they are playing correctly because each note has a bowing indication and each stem of the note reminds the student on which string they should be playing that note. An Open E string tone can be played, and often should be played with a fourth finger on the A string. Lots of reasons why but does a four-year-old care? No, they will play it correctly and understand fully down the road. They will shake their head at your explanation and when they are eight acknowledge what you said. At four, they have the capability to play well and efficiently but want it at lightning speed. Gum Drop Notes offers this and much more. Give them a try.Nick Nack Paddy Wack Gavotte by Gossec

A Year in Level Two

Level Two- purchased separately on a monthly subscription or as a one year study program

Songs from the great composers from years past and their biographies


Keepers Level – Chorus from Judas Maccabeus

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Handel was a prolific composer. He invented the English oratorio. His most famous oratorio was “‘The Messiah’ So what’s an oratorio? It is like an opera where people sing, chamber groups play and orchestras are hired and it tells a story. The difference? The opera uses costumes and performers. The oratorio is just singing. Chorus was an oratorio performed at the Theatre-Royal in the Covent-Garden. Chorus is the first song in book two of the Suzuki repertoire.


Keepers Level – Musette by Bach

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Keepers – Musette by Bach – is the second song in the Suzuki Violin repertoire. The color-coded sheet music, play along mp4 videos and audio files help the student memorize the song and techniques almost like magic. Try it.


Keepers Level – Hunter’s Chorus by Carl Maria Von Weber

The musical story of The Hunter’s Chorus is about ‘marksman’ or ‘hunter’ who relies on magic. Hunter’s Chorus. This is called Jägerchor in German. This means the “Master of the Hunt” The tune of the Hunter’s Chorus is in act 3, It is the chorus about the joy of hunting

Each note is represented with a color. The stem of the note tells the violinist and mandolin players which string the note is played on. The harp could use the notes ignoring the string indicators except that they will tell if the note is a higher tone or lower tone by the color of the stem. E (blue) is the highest string on a violin and mandolin. The lowest is the G. (green) It could be used by any instrument. Even the cello could play the tunes and when they reach the E string they could simply play the indicated notes somewhere else. It’s like magic. (cello and piano music masterclasses are available specifically for them as well)

Mp4 play along videos at various speeds, mp3 audio to download and listen to when you aren’t actually practicing. Downloadable sheet music.

When studying a piece of music, it is always fun to know a little about the composer. Each song in the “Keepers” Book 2 has an insightful discussion about the composer imaging what he might have been thinking or what his life might have been like. “Hunter’s Chorus” is found in the Suzuki repertoire and color-coded in the Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing curriculum. To study a piece correctly, it helps to know the correct bowing and the correct fingering. Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing teaches complex music theory concepts with clues and crutches throughout the song. Memorize the music quickly while learning subtle bits of theory by using the play-along music at different speeds.

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Keepers Level – Waltz by Johannes Brahms

Waltz is a Suzuki song in Book 2. It is a great opportunity to understand repetition in songs and dynamics.

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Keeper Level – Long Long Ago by Thomas Bayly

Composer story, mp4 play along music, mp3 audio ,downloadable sheet music and lyrics Tell me the tales that to me were so dear, Long, long ago, long, long ago, Sing me the songs I delighted to hear, Long, long ago, long ago, Do you remember the paths where we met? Ah, yes, you told me you’d never forget, Let me believe that you love ‘me still yet’, Long, long ago, long ago.

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Keepers Level – Bourree By George Frideric Handel

Bourree by Handel is one of my favorite songs in the Keeper Level. Be sure to learn the previews first and well because the whole song is based on how they are played. I like to start with a small bow and open the bow as I go through the run. This is a fun, secret way to get the sound to become fuller.

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Keeper Level – The Two Grenadiers by R. Schumann

The musical story of two French soldiers returning home after a war. Lots of expressive passages and bowing. Take your time and play it with energy and expression.

When you sign into this masterclass the links will open. Enjoy the journey. Email me with questions.

Mp4 play along videos at various speeds, mp3 audio to download and listen to when you aren’t actually practicing. Downloadable sheet music. All for less than the price of one violin lesson or a cup of coffee a day. When studying a piece of music, it is always fun to know a little about the composer. Each song in the “Keepers” Book 2 has an insightful discussion about the composer imaging what he might have been thinking or what his life might have been like. “The Two Grenadiers” is found in the Suzuki repertoire and color-coded in the Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing curriculum. To study a piece correctly, it helps to know the correct bowing and the correct fingering. Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing teaches complex music theory concepts with clues and crutches throughout the song. Memorize the music quickly while learning subtle bits of theory by using the play-along music at different speeds.

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Witches Dance – Paganini

Witches Dance is so much fun to play. Lots of arpeggios and a final run. Try to learn them first and your life will be a lot easier.

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Gavotte from Mignon is a step up the ladder. Give it a try and you find that you are a better player for having taking this class

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Keeper Level – Gavotte by Lully


If I asked you to tell me how many A’s are played in this run how long would it take to count them? 15 seconds? A is red. It is a warm tone and red is a warm color. Now, how many notes are played on the A string? Look at the stems. That tells the secret. Red stems are played on the A string. This is great when learning to shift into higher positions because an F# can be played on the A string and that gives you a clue where ‘I suggest’ it be played. Of course. It is up to you. You are the musician and you need to listen to the quality of the sound and then adjust the location it is played.

Mp4 play along videos at various speeds, mp3 audio to download and listen to when you aren’t actually practicing. Downloadable sheet music. All for less than the price of one violin lesson or a cup of coffee a day.

When studying a piece of music, it is always fun to know a little about the composer. Each song in the “Keepers” Book 2 has an insightful discussion about the composer imaging what he might have been thinking or what his life might have been like. “Gavotte by Lully” is found in the Suzuki repertoire and color-coded in the Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing curriculum. To study a piece correctly, it helps to know the correct bowing and the correct fingering. Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing teaches complex music theory concepts with clues and crutches throughout the song. Memorize the music quickly while learning subtle bits of theory by using the play-along music at different speeds.

More information – take the class now


Keepers Level – Minuet in G by Bach

Lots of previews….lots of bowing techniques.
Take it slowly and learn the previews well before attempting the song.

Mp4 play along videos at various speeds, mp3 audio to download and listen to when you aren’t actually practicing. Downloadable sheet music. All for less than the price of one violin lesson or a cup of coffee a day.

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Keepers Rigoletto and Teddy Bear’s Picnic – Amazing Grace

links will be activated once you become a student

Two of the most interesting songs to learn that can make solos or living room concerts lots of fun.

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Keepers Level – Minuet by Boccherini

Minuet by Boccherini is not as hard as it seems at first. Simply take it in pieces….’one little bit at a time’ and you will master it quickly

When studying a piece of music, it is always fun to know a little about the composer. Each song in the “Keepers” Book 2 has an insightful discussion about the composer imaging what he might have been thinking or what his life might have been like. “Minuet by Boccherini” is found in the Suzuki repertoire and color-coded in the Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing curriculum. To study a piece correctly, it helps to know the correct bowing and the correct fingering. Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing teaches complex music theory concepts with clues and crutches throughout the song. Memorize the music quickly while learning subtle bits of theory by using the play-along music at different speeds.

Mp4 play along videos at various speeds, mp3 audio to download and listen to when you aren’t actually practicing. Downloadable sheet music. All for less than the price of one violin lesson or a cup of coffee a day.

Keepers Level Minuet by Boccherini

Minuet by Boccherini is not as hard as it seems at first. Simply take it in pieces….’one little bit at a time’ and you will master it quickly.

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Level Three- purchased separately on a monthly subscription or as a one year study program

The Manatees – Level Three

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Manatees Level – Minuet Three by Bach
Minuet Three is an extension of the song in Book one Salmons. It contains a very beautiful exercise to prepare the student to play G minor. Learn it well first. It is a preview spot.

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Manatees – Gavotte in G Minor
My favorite song in book 3. Ok well….one of my favorite songs. This is a great collection of huge songs with gentle spirits. The Gavotte in G Minor includes mp4 videos, sheet music and instructions. Take your time. Email me if you run into a problem. Always happy to help.

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Manatees – Humoresque by Dvorak
The composer of this song looks like a bear but with how gentle the song is, he must be a teddy bear. This MasterClass includes Humoresque and Songs My Mother Taught Me, This is one of my favorite songs. Watch the stem colors because it does unexpectedly shift for one little phrase.

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Manatees – Gavotte in D Major by J.S.Bach
Gavotte in D Major is a great solo piece for the violin. Take each section slowly and put it together with clear grace notes.

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Manatees – Gavotte by Becker
Gavotte by Becker is a bit of a challenge. Learn the previews first and then try it by sections.

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Manatees – Bourree by Bach
Bourree by Bach – To study a piece correctly, it helps to know the correct bowing and the correct fingering. Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing teaches complex music theory concepts with clues and crutches throughout the song. Memorize the music quickly while learning subtle bits of theory by using the play-along music at different speeds.

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A Year in Level Four

Level Four- Dolphins

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Dolphins – Seitz 1 Concerto No2, 3rd Movement
The first Seitz in book 4 of the Suzuki repertoire in Gum Drop Notes with harmony. Stick with it until you can play it at the polished speed with the harmony. Downloadable sheet music, mp3, mp4 play along videos. Play with the videos. The first time will be horrible. Expect that. The second time will be better so work through it.

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Dolphins – Seitz 2 – Concerto 5 1st movement

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Dolphins – Seitz 3 Concerto 5 3rd Movement

Give this a try. Mp4, Mp3 audio, downloadable sheet music. Lots of previews. Practice with the previews until you can play them up to speed and then work on the entire song. Don’t stop until you can play it well…..memorized. The cost of a few cups of coffee.
Seitz – mp4, mp3, downloadable sheet music and harmonies. Give it a try but take your time and learn the bowing techniques, the ups and downs, and the speed at which some of it is played. Go til you’ve got it!…Be able to play it along with the play along music.

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Dolphins – Lullabies Schubert
and Brahms
Two simple tunes to help you understand the 3rd position on the violin. Another song to practice your ability to play in 3rd position. Watch the color of the stem for an indication as to which string the note is played on. The numbers on top of the note are also in the color of the string on which it is played.

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The Dolphins – Concerto in A Minor 3rd Movement – Antonio Vivaldi
Another amazing concerto from Vivaldi. This song is a great introduction to the music of a great composer and teacher. Learn it well. Memorize every little note and then play it up to speed with the play-along mp4. Work on it until you can play along with the mp4.

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The Dolphins– Concerto in A Minor 1st Movement – Vivaldi
Vivaldi was a red-headed priest who taught girls to play music in Venice. It was forbidden so he put something in front of the girls so they couldn’t be seen while playing. This concerto is energetic and fun to play. Lots of fast notes and 3rd position at the beginning.

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The Dolphins – Bach Double Concerto for Violins in D Minor
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The Bach Double is considered among the best examples of the work of the late Baroque period. It is an amazing feeling to be playing in the midst of a group of violinists. We have the manuscript written in Bach’s own handwriting. It is a dance between two violins. Amazing.

Add on Master Classes

– Monthly subscriptions (second month is at a reduced fee)

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Selfie Profiles
Here are some of the topics we will discuss in very short, 5 minute stories. They aren’t instructive talks. They are stories, examples and ideas to mentally ‘chew’ on. ‘ Data with a Soul’. Take one or two a day. Once you complete the Master Class, you might want to consider the 7 week course of the Igniting Sleeping Brains Project – taking one week on each of your senses and layering very simple, non-threatening activities to force your brain to vie for dominance and build extra paths. The class will only be offered to those who have gone through the free “Igniting Sleeping Brains 7 Day Challenge Project” and the Master Class.
“Who are the Super Heroes?”
“Super Heroes are Happy”
“Super Hero Test and answers”
“Facial Dominance”
“Eye Dominance”
“Hand foot and ear dominance”
“A Goal without a Plan is just a Wish”
“A Study in Happiness and Commitment”
“Comparing Stress vs Burnout”
“Don’t think about Fish”
“I Played the Truck”
“The Parking Lot and the Why Behind our Choices “
“Desirable qualities and Undesirable flaws and why does that matter when studying music?”
“Compliant or Cooperative – Which is better?”
“How We are Wired and Why it Matters When Learning Music — or anything for that matter”
“What Others Think and Why it shouldn’t Matter”
“Organized Clutter”
“Wait for it!”
“The Perfect Storm”
“Winter Doldrums”
“Creatively Strengthening Mini Minds”
“The dimmer switch on progress”
“The Pattern Interrupt”
“Moments are the ‘bytes’ of our life”
“Practice with sticking power”
“3 Steps: Make a dream a vision and then a reality”
“Healthy Model vs Diseased Model”
“Smorgasbord Feast for the Brain”
“Chatting with the birds”
“What if you knew the end of the game at the beginning?”
“Planting Seeds”
“Don’t fight the Loss – Define and Fight the battle”
“Take Back Your Life and Make it Happen”
“5 points for making memories”
“Igniting Sleeping Brains Strategy”
“The 8’s week one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight”
“Crutches to Creativity”
“See – Hear – or Move to Process Information and life around you”
“Mind Control – I feel Happy, I feel Healthy, I feel Terrific!”
“Playing Music at the Grandparents’ house”
“Memorial Day”
“The Flow”
“Enriching the Brain”
“You deserve a break today ….if…. “
“Character First “
” Four D’s We can Influence and One we Can’t”
“Are you in the cycle of the revolving door?”
“Anchors in Life”
“Capture the Moment”
“Mommy Manifesto”
“It’s Easier to Start Something than Finishing it”
“The Psychology of Choice”
“What is Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing?”
“When children’s or our eyes are distracted – focus”
“The value of speed and games in learning”
“Three kinds of Music Readers”
“Creatively strengthen music students”
“Life is better when in balance”
“A cup of tea”
“Perfection vs Excellence”
“Greenhouse Mentoring”
“Today I identified with a gas station”
“What is the Gas that Runs the Motor that Feeds the Meter?”
“Practice – A little thought on a little change”
“Drift – Driven – Design your Practice”

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Violin – Early One Morning
Early one morning is a cute fun tune. Starting on C Major you continue the song by going to D Major and then E Major etc. with the same tune. It is a great warm up or any instrument. Written for the violin with the stems indicating the string it is played on, this still works for mandolin, cello, piano and guitar.

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Violin – Pachelbel’s Canon – MasterClass
Pachelbel’s Canon has become one of the most popular wedding songs of the decade. It has just about taken the position of the wedding march for brides as they come down the aisle.
Pachelbel’s Canon starts with previews of the most difficult passages. Once the previews are mastered, the student then begins the song with ‘candy cane’ notes. The notes are color-coded and lettered to give a solid foundation. Eventually, the student moves to black notes with very few prompts.
A fun duet completes the book using the skills from Pachelbel’s Canon.
Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing is a system to teach complex music theory concepts, sight-reading and how to play the violin, teaching students to memorize repertoire rapidly and deeply.
This Master Class has all the stems colored to indicate the string the note is played on for the violin but it can be used for two or three pianos, mandolins, harps etc. to play as a round as well.
Pachelbel Canon Preview (very slowly)
Pachelbel Preview

Pachelbel Preview (Very Slowly)—
Pachelbel (Very Slowly)
Pachelbel First Shift
Pachelbel Preview 3 Rhythm
Pachelbel – the complete song
Pachelbel – trio

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Violin – MasterClass – Canons (most in the key of C)
The Canons – most in the key of C are a compilation of many rounds and canons for individuals with the play-along videos or a group

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Violin – MasterClass – Fiddle Tunes – Gum Drop Notes
The violin is like our voice. It is the tool we use to produce different languages. Fiddle is a far cry from classical violin and a close cousin to Gypsy. Give it a try. Download the sheet music and learn the song. Don’t frustrate yourself by trying to play quickly when you are just learning the tunes. That will definitely come later. Listen to the audio and watch the mp4 at various speeds. Enjoy the journey,

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Violin – MasterClass – Fickle Fingers Companion Books Finger Positions
Can you imagine playing ‘The Flight of the Bumblebee”? It’s possible with this course if you take each lesson and learn it well. Just as we studied the rhythms on the open strings, we will use these same rhythms to become familiar with each of the fingers used in first position. Take it slowly and enjoy the path of adding one finger at a time to your songs.

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MasterClass – Christmas Sheet Music and Play-along for Violin, Piano and Cello
The Christmas Masterclass is for the piano, cello, violin ,harp and mandolin. Enjoy the amazing difference playing and singing Christmas Carols in the comfort of your own living room. Almost anyone can learn a Carol with the Scales Aren’t Just a Fish Thing method.

Using Gum Drop Notes is simple

With a degree in psychology and 30 years as a violin teacher, this incredible method developed to help students, no matter the age or learning difference, in their quest to deeply understand music theory, sight-reading and the actual tones being played.

The Gum Drop Notes color coding does not represent any psychological issue. We aren’t really seeing colors as we play. What is happening is that each note becomes a tone with a unique sound and color of its own. It takes on a characteristic that can be identified.

Keep in mind that the colors of the notes are subliminally teaching complex music theory concepts without a word of lecturing. Stem colors indicate the string the note is to be played on. Sharps and flats are reinforced by a circle of the color the note is moving toward. Card games to go along with the sheet music tunes teach the order and relationship of notes, symbols and rhythms, etc. Play-along movies bring the student up to polished speed and teach the the tune before the student begins to study the music.

It all seems too good to be true, but once you begin to use the Gum Drop Notes sheet music, play along mp4, and card games, you will be amazed at how fast you learn music theory and the music you are studying and memorizing.