The more you practice, the BETTER you get!
4th graders: Print this PDF for the Recorder Karate songs and fingering chart.
Listen to the recordings to make sure you are playing the songs correctly.
The recorder is a woodwind instrument that dates back to the 1300s. Famous composers including Bach, Handel, Purcell, Telemann, and Vivaldi wrote beautiful music for the recorder. Today, you can still find recorders made of wood (although they are very expensive), but there are many fine recorders that are made of plastic. I recommend the Yamaha soprano recorder YSR-24B for our beginning students. The soprano recorder is a good size for children's hands.
Practice is the KEY to SUCCESS with any skill. Students should start with 5 to 10 minutes of practice every day. Schedule a time to practice, and build that into your daily routine. At first, just work on getting a good sound out of the instrument. Later you will need to practice the songs in the book that they will be tested on. For each song learned and successfully played, students earn a "recorder belt" that is tied to the end of their instrument.
If you are having trouble making a good sound on the recorder (you'll know by the squeaks and squawks) it's usually one of the following problems:
1 Not covering the holes completely will affect the sound (and not in a good way!) Look at your fingers in a mirror as you play. Make sure you completely cover the thumb hole on the back, then check your fingers on the top of the instrument. Be sure to have flat fingers and use the pad of your finger to cover the entire hole.
2. Covering or partially covering lower holes with the right hand. Any hole that is covered or partially covered will change the sound. Let your right thumb support the instrument, but keep your right fingers away from the holes until you need them.
3. Blowing too hard. Students should blow with a slow, warm, and gentle breath.
For more help, look in the SRE Recorder book. There you will find details about tonguing and fingering as well as how to read the notes on the staff and much more.