Pentatonic Scale Improv Ideas for Elementary to Intermediate Levels

Week #2: Pentatonic Improvisation (Click Pentatonic Improv for instructions)

* You can only imagine how happy they all were this past week, when students were “allowed” to play FIVE notes instead of just ONE! I explained that these were a nickel’s worth of notes but worth their weight in gold. In keeping with my philosophy that everything should be introduced first by ear, I played the 5 notes (beginning on C) and they IMG_0289were asked to match them, without looking at my hands. Upon discovery, we then assigned them scale degree

* Faces were beaming when students discovered how good they could sound using those 5 notes. ANY one of them worked above my vamping and the iReal b band. They were asked to play the same LH patterns as the week before (just C, E, F and G) and again, this was trickier but they enjoyed the challenge and integrated many of their discovered rhythmical riffs of last week in their nickels worth of notes.

Was this helpful? Have you used any of these tips? How do you use iReal b?

Are you and your students enjoying the magic of the pentatonic scale?

My best advice: JUST DO IT!

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