Starting from Scratch

Representing Meter Using Simple Programming Tools

Authored by: Daniel B. Stevens

The Routledge Companion to Music Theory Pedagogy

Print publication date:  February  2020
Online publication date:  February  2020

Print ISBN: 9781138585010
eBook ISBN: 9780429505584
Adobe ISBN:


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The lesson plan in this chapter offers an experiential, hands-on approach to learning common beat (simple, compound) and meter (duple, triple, quadruple) types. Students begin by creating metrical effects in a simple programming environment (Scratch) using only changes in pitch, duration, or emphasis. Students then proceed to study how different pieces combine these three elements to produce their unique metrical effects. Having constructed their own examples of each beat and meter type, they finally learn how to represent the music they composed using musical time and durational symbols.

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