Violin Lesson 7 – Third Finger Notes

I know, you’ve already been playing with your fingers on the strings in your Five Note Scales! But now we are adding them to our note reading and using them in our songs. By adding these 2 third finger notes, we will have 6 notes to use in arranging/composing songs!

Keep practicing your Five Note Scale Exercises! They will continue to be helpful in establishing a great hand frame foundation. To be honest, we never stop practicing hand frame! I still focus on hand frame in my own practicing. This week we are going to get a little more creative and include Rhythm Scale Practice with our hand frame exercises. The rhythm will be done with the bow, you will still finger the Five Note Scale in the same order. Keep those flashcards going too!

Take note of the Time Signature I will include on your sheet music this week. Remember that the top number represents how many counts are in each measure, the bottom number tells what type of note receives one beat. Today I’m going to be teaching you about Key Signatures.

Answer Keys for Lesson 6

How did you like the worksheets for Lesson 6? If you need more practice with Note Spelling, just print the worksheets off a couple times for repetition. I mixed the notes up pretty well so this really should give you an excellent start! Here is the answer key so you can check you work:

Crossword Answer Key

Note Spelling Answer Key

Fingers on the Strings

Okay! You ready for some more interesting songs this week!? Now that we have all 4 open strings PLUS our 2 third finger notes on the strings, we are going to be able to play a lot more interesting music. Get ready to practice! As things get more complex, a little more time commitment is sure to be demanded. BUT, it will be more enjoyable, I promise! I’ll try to go easy on the rhythm this week, and add that in the mix next week. After all, we still have to learn about sixteenth notes!

We have already played these third finger notes within our Five Note Scales, but now we are really going to adopt them as our own, learning their location on the staff very precisely, and hopefully naming them off on a flashcard very quickly and easily. I really want you to wrap your mind around these new notes as we add them.

First we will add the third finger on the A – String = D. Here is a visual for all the fingers on the A – String in relation to their home on the music staff.

Fingers on the A String

Next we will also be using the third finger on the D – String = G.ย Here is a visual for all the fingers on the D – String in relation to their home on the music staff.

Fingers on the D String

Just as you checked your intonation of fourth finger with the open string to the right, now you can check your third finger intonation with the open string below, to the left. Time to really establish muscle memory for these third finger notes! Hopefully hand frame muscle memory is already kicking in for you which will make this so much easier.

Sixteenth Notes

“Not another note value!”, you say. Well, yes. Yes, actually there is another note value. A few more to come actually. But hopefully they are all starting to make sense together. Most beginners are a bit intimidated by sixteenth notes, but there is no reason to be! These are not fast notes, unless you are playing a fast song, which we don’t need to do right now. As long as you are playing a slow-medium tempo, sixteenth notes aren’t that fast at all.

The sixteenth note is a black dot with a stem and TWO flags/tails

Sixteenth Note Flashcard

As you probably figured, a Sixteenth Note is half the value of an Eighth Note. So a sixteenth note receives 1/4 of a count. This means that 4 sixteenth notes fit inside of a quarter note. Also, 2 sixteenth notes fit inside of an eighth note.

Sharps & Flats, Accidentals

Accidentals. Why are they called that!? I have no idea. No, they didn’t accidentally put these notes in the music. What are they? Now that I do know. Accidentals include sharp (#), flat (b), and natural signs. They change the pitch of the note to a higher, lower, or natural pitch.

  1. The Sharp (#) is not a hash tag. You might have to re train your thinking on this matter! ๐Ÿ™‚ When you see a # sign in front of a note, it raises that note by 1/2 step. On the violin, this is a width of about 1/2 inch. This is why you see 2nd finger (C# and F#), in the diagrams above, close to 3rd finger and more space between the other notes.
  2. The Flat looks like a lowercase b and lowers the note by 1/2 step.
  3. Then we have the natural sign which cancels out a sharp or a flat and moves the note back to it’s natural pitch.

Accidentals Flashcard

Key Signatures

Rather than putting accidentals all over your sheet music, we use something called Key Signatures. You could think of these much like a family’s last name. The notes within a Key Signature are all related to each other, they go together. You will find the key signature on each line of music, unlike the time signature which only appears on the first line of the music.

Worksheets and Music

Now for the fun stuff! I made a couple songs for you to play using all the open strings, plus our third finger notes. COMING SOON: You can find the sheet music below, and the play along video on my YouTube Channel.

I’m taking the next two weeks off from teaching private lessons and plan to FINISH THIS ONLINE COURSE!!! If you are following, please comment to encourage me! ๐Ÿ™‚ Summer isn’t over just yet, and this is a summer course, so let’s finish this up while it’s still Summer!

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