Finale can do anything. But make a worksheet fun?

When I hear the word “worksheet,” my initial reaction is not the giddy anticipation of fun.  Perhaps I’m not alone in this.

That said, I think students will have fun with the jazz improvisation worksheets included with Finale 2011. These worksheets offer tips to beginning improvisers AND provide students with excellent accompaniment for their explorations.

To find these worksheets, go to:

My Documents > Finale Files > Worksheets > Jazz Improvisation

Here’s how you might use them:

  1. Select a worksheet, based on instrument transposition, clef, and level of difficulty, and email it to your student.
  2. Using the free, downloadable Finale Reader, your student prints the worksheet, then presses “Play” in the Reader to provide accompaniment as they play the concepts presented.

In the excerpt below, the notation seen on the staves does not play back. Instead, a swinging jazz trio plays an accompaniment using Reader’s built-in sounds.

Even if you don’t have an interest in teaching jazz improvisation (or improvising yourself), the construction of these files is clever and provides a few examples of Finale’s flexibility.

Can you figure out how the accompaniment music was hidden? Can you determine why the visible notation doesn’t play back?

The first person who can answers both questions correctly gets a free Finale T-shirt.

Send in your answer, or anything else, by clicking on “Comments” below.

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