Eighth Notes is the time, when in music class it can get difficult. Although it doesn't have to! Many teachers and parents make the mistake of focusing on the "mathematical side" of this note value too soon. For kids this is too abstract. Start by introducing the new shape of this note in a playful way (it actually has two different shapes) and just play some rhythms - with eighth notes it gets groovy!
How to Learn Eighth Notes in 3 Steps
Learning and Talking About Eighth Notes Start by introducing the shape of the note in the easiest and most fun way possible.
Eighth Note Rhythms Compare the note with other note values by practicing rhythm games.
Drawing the Eighth Notes After playing with the note visually and rhythmically, it will be easy for children to draw the note themselves.
1. Learning and Talking About Eighth Notes
Doesn't matter if you introduce the eighth note early or later with your child - eighth notes are fun! Since two eighth notes look a little different than one eighth note it makes sense to let children play with the different shapes for a while and talk about the differences and similarities.
Colouring Game with Eighth Notes
In this cute colouring printable children are asked to paint different parts of the lion with different colours, depending on the note that is written. Although it is a perfect activity that they can do themselves, doing it together with your child holds even more possibilities. Keep asking questions about the shape, the head and the stem of the notes and your child will soon know all about them.
Mini Music Memory
For learning to distinguish eighth notes from other note shapes it is nice to have a reason to talk about them more. And we don't mean basic questions like "what's the difference between eighth notes and quarter notes?" Make it fun by using this little game of Memory. It gives you and your child a good reason for saying things like "Does it also have a flag?", "Does it have a note stem, too?" or "Is the head of the note filled in, like in the quarter notes?"
I Spy Note Values
Here is an activity that your child can also easily do on their own and at the same time they learn to differentiate the different note shapes.
In this similar version of the music game you can find the shape of "2 eighth notes" (the version above only had the "one eighth note shape"). Talk with your kid about the differences and check if they already understood everything about them.
2. Eighth Note Rhythms
Rhythm is where it gets interesting with eighth notes, because they bring in some speed! Doesn't matter which rhythm you choose, most of them will feel faster if you use some eighths.
Rhythm Animals Music Game
With this cute animal game you can differentiate quarter from eighth notes by using animal movements and sounds. The elephant for example can stomp very regularly as quarter beats, while the penguin waddles faster (also regularly) in eighth note beats.
Rhymes are an excellent and fun way of naturally incorporating rhythm in speech. These short rhymes are easy to learn and quick to follow. Regularly beat with your flat hand on your chest for keeping the pulse of the rhyme (heart symbols) and then speak the words and syllables over the right beats.
In this second rhyme you will notice a little rhythm change in the last line. Also try to repeat the rhyme more than once you keep a steady rhythm and to give your child the chance to repeat the words (and rhythms) over and over.
3. Drawing the Eighth Notes
Here are two little activity printables to learn drawing the single eighth notes (the ones with the flag). Keep in mind the difference between:
single eighth notes (the ones with the flag)
double eighth notes (the two notes connected by a beam)
Trace Single Eighth Notes
This worksheet gives a child the opportunity to first simply trace the shape of the already pre-written eighth notes. After this they will be able to write them - big or small - all on their own.
Trace Double Eighth Notes
Use these worksheets to practice writing the double eighth notes, which are most of the time connected by a beam.
How can I find more music activities?
Find more activities like these on our website: https://www.paupa.org
Private Music School in Palma de Mallorca
You want private music lessons for your child? Visit us in our music school in Palma de Mallorca, Spain, where we offer piano lessons, guitar lessons, ukulele lessons, singing lessons, music introduction and more.