Just enough time today for a quick post before students start to arrive for the evening…
I mentioned last week that I had raided my studio closet to come up with enough games and activities to review a year’s worth of theory in group classes. In doing so, I pulled out some of my favorite “old” games that hadn’t been off the shelf in a while.
Here’s one that I created a few years ago. This “Dizzy Fifths” spinner game drills key signatures & the Circle of 5ths:
The gameboard is a simple blank circle of 5ths with an arrow spinner. To play, I divide students into two teams. Each team receives a wet erase marker and a deck of cards with sharp and flat names. The first team spins the arrow and fills in the name of the major and minor key where it lands. Play continues back and forth until one team spins and the arrow lands on a set of blanks that have already been filled in. The teams then use their cards to lay out the contents of that key in order (i.e. if the arrow lands on E Major, they would lay out F#, C#, G# and D# cards in order).
I sometimes get tired of using lots of card games in lessons (cards are so easy to create, I’ve got a LOT of card games!) The spinner takes a little more work to assemble, but gives some nice variety in a lesson where I’ve planned several theory games. I’ve included instructions detailing how I made mine with the game file. If you’ve never made a spinner game before, you can also do a quick online search and find several diagrams and suggested materials.
The game is available for download on my studio website. The file includes the game board, playing cards, instructions for assembling the spinner board and instructions for play. There are also a couple of Circle of 5ths handouts (one complete and one blank) available on the site that I often use in conjunction with this game. (Scroll all the way to the bottom of the Theory Sheets page to find them).