Hi there Blitzers,
Welcome to the September newsletter.
Free Grade 1 Teacher Guide
The Grade 1 Teacher Guide is now available as a FREE pdf download. This is a fantastic teacher resource which outlines common mistakes made by students and variations of acceptable answers in AMEB exams. The teacher guide also examines the changing trends of AMEB papers and contains extensive information on many different topics based on my own experience. At the end of the guide there is an excellent 'Preparation Guide' which helps to plan out the last term or so before the exam and gives suggestions of when to give students past papers.
The Grade 1 Theory Teacher Guide has been completely updated to include all the latest syllabus information (i.e. no more folk songs!) and correct workbook page references.
It's available from our Downloads page (at the top of page 3).
Update on Grade 4 Musicianship Exams
The Grade 4 Musicianship Aural exam is now only worth 40% of the total mark, instead of 50%. This was news to me as a teacher AND a parent as recently as a couple of weeks ago, when my son sat the exam and was confronted with many more questions in the Form and History section than he had encountered in any of the past papers we had done.
At this point I must confess we had only done past papers from 2010 and before. I had not yet gotten around to purchasing the May 2011 paper and I guess I would have found this out then. So I apologise for being 3 months late with this news flash!
Until this year, folk songs have been part of all Theory and Musicianship papers Grades 1-4. In Grade 4 Musicianship, the folk song component was part of the aural paper. As you are all aware, folk songs are no longer part of the syllabus, therefore this is not part of the aural paper anymore.
However, it seems that the Form and History section is the one that has absorbed most of the 10 marks that were previously allocated to the Folk Songs. (In the two papers from 2011, there were also an extra two marks allocated to the harmony section.) This is important information as it does change the way students prioritise their study for these two exams.
Whilst the syllabus does not say how many marks are allocated to the aural and written papers, the weighting has always been 50/50 in past years. So teachers should be aware of this change, and according to the 2011 ‘trend’ should prepare students more thoroughly for the Form and History section in the written paper.
New edition of Grade 4 Musicianship
Next month will see the launch of the NEW edition of Grade 4 Musicianship. Although there are no changes to the syllabus except for the deletion of the folk songs, the new edition contains more revision sheets and simpler explanations of four-part harmony. Accompanying the workbook are the FREE online aural tutorials and practice exams.
Sight Reading Book 3 is on its way...
Sight Reading Book 3 is on its way and is due for release in late October. If you are interested in trying out some of the material in advance, please send me an email and I'll send you some stuff!
Another exciting project in the BlitzBooks pipeline is the 'How to Blitz! Scales and Arpeggios' series. This series is guaranteed to make your students happy and excited about playing their scales. Yes, that's right, happy, excited and scales all in the same sentence! We are looking for teachers who would like to be part of a pilot program in 2012. Once again if you are interested in this then please send me an email.
Share the Love
Do you find BlitzBooks useful? Do your students enjoy using them, and do they do well? If so (and we certainly hope so), we'd love you to leave a review on the Music Room site. Click on this link to see the list of BlitzBooks available - click on the one you'd like to review and leave a note with your thoughts. You may be asked to register on the site (but it's free and only takes a minute). Many thanks for your support!