Want to became a fast note reader?
The Intervallic Approach is the best way to teach students to read music notation.
Good sightreaders of all levels do not read by letter name. Instead, they read by shapes of chords and melody contours that are based on intervals.
The use of Landmark Notes gives students conﬁdence that notes do in fact have assigned places on the staff.
The old “All Cows Eat Grass” / “Good Boys Do Fine” mnemonic device makes much more difﬁcult to remember which line/space/treble/bass section corresponds to which mnemonic device.
Instead of memorizing 18 spaces and lines in a speciﬁc order memorize few landmarks evenly spaced out on the keyboard.
There are 3 core landmarks:
- The ﬁrst landmark is Middle C
- The second landmark in Treble G
- The third landmark is Bass F
Middle C is exactly in the middle between the other 2 landmarks. G and F are equally 4 notes away from Middle C. Between G and middle C there are 3 notes (D, E, F) and between F and Middle C there are again 3 notes (G, A, B).
Visually you can see a sort of relationship: Treble G is on the second line from the bottom of Trebleclef, while Bass F is on the second line from top of Bass clef.
Now you can expand outward the next 2 landmarks: Treble C and Bass C.
They are equally outward: Treble C is 3 notes over Treble G, Bass C is 3 notes under Bass F.
Notice that they look visually very similar too: Treble C is on the third space from the bottom of Treble clef, while Bass C is on the third space from top of Bass clef.
Now out again with the next 2 landmarks which are High G and Low F.
Visually they look very similar too: High G is touching the top of the clef in Treble clef, while Low F is touching the bottom of the Bass clef. They are both in the spaces touching the outsides.
The next landmark is High C which is 2 ledger lines over the Treble clef, and Low C which is 2 ledger lines below the Bass clef.
We have 9 landmarks: in Treble clef we have only Cs and Gs, in Bass clef only Cs and Fs. Visually is easy to remember.
Since now you know the space relationship between the landmarks you can very easily ﬁgure out the other notes around these landmarks by means of the Step & Skip alphabet.
So if you memorize these 9 landmarks you have easy access to all the other notes.