Instructions for the clapyourhands course.
Above you see a staff. This bar has 5 horizontal lines and is divided by 4 vertical stripes. The part between the vertical stripes is called a MEASURE.
At the front you see 2x a 4 above each other, which means that it is a 4 quarter measure . So there will be 4 counts in one measure. (read more on: instructions/theory).
There are several music keys, but we do not need music keys for the rhythm exercises in this course.
(More information concerning music keys on: en.wikipedia.org).
The double thick vertical stripes
replace the music key at the beginning of the staff.
The Note value
The duration of the notes is described in the section theory 01-07 en theory 08-14 which you will find under ‘instructions’.
Furthermore, at each level a diagram is displayed that indicates which notes or rests are used that are new to that level.
Level 1 is a level without rests, in level 2 rests are added, level 3 is not always more difficult than level 1 or 2 but often has different notes or rests.
At the same time you tap your foot , the clap of your hands (or rest) kan occur.
The exercises assume a (metronome) pace of
“Quarter note= 60” (ex. 1).
If you want to know more about a metronome, check out: en.wikipedia.org.
To practice the quarters and the eighths, tap your foot on the floor. (see ex: 2)
Your foot always keeps tapping on the floor at the same pace, whilst you clap the rhythm with your hands.
Leave your heel on the ground, so in a 4 quarter measure your foot is on the ground on the beats 1,2,3,4.
(If you are practicing in a bus or train, you can also practice by moving your toes up and down.)
Let your heel stay put on the ground.
In a two-quarter measure you tap twice per measure, in three quarters, 3 x per measure and in a 4 quarter measure, 4 x per measure.
THE TEMPO OF YOUR FOOT NEVER GETS FASTER OR SLOWER.
If you notice during an exercise that your foot is taking the same pace as in the rhythm of your hands, then you are doing it WRONG!!!
Your foot works like a clock. A clock indicates a CONSTANT tempo. Think of a watch, the seconds pointer ALWAYS goes at the same pace!
Always use the COMBINATION of tapping with your foot and clapping your hands (or tapping with one hand / finger).
Without using this combination, the effect of your rhythmic development is less effective.
It is useful to switch the tapping of your foot and the clapping of your hands, from tapping with your left and then again your right foot.
If you like tapping with your finger more than clapping, also switch from tapping with your left and then again your right foot.
The way of counting goes as follows with notes with a sixteenth value. 1e & e (this group of notes lasts One beat)
(see explanation about the duration of the notes and rest under ‘instructions/theory’)
Usually the “e” is pronounced as ‘a’ but you can actually choose any vowel you want.
Also the counting can be done in a different manner such as eg.
1 e & a, or 1 ù and ù, but in this course it was not chosen, to keep counting as simple as possible.
The numbers above the notes (ex. 4) indicate the number of notes (or rests) that occur in one measure.
In this example, there are 4 counts (=notes) in one measure.
Here is an example of a 4 quarternote measure
In example ex.4 you clap your hands 4 times and at the same time you tap your foot 4 times
You see the notes clapped by your hands change, but that the pace of your foot remains the same.
In this example, the first measure has 4 counts.
You tap these notes with your foot. You clap the notes on the staff with “hands”.
You can (certainly as a beginner) count the numbers aloud as follows, whereby it is good to put the accent on the first part of each beat as in
ex.5 measure 3
Óne e Twó e Thrée e Fóur e
and also: (see ex.5 measure 4)
Óne e & e Twó e & e Thrée Fóur
Counting out loud is also a very good way to check yourself.
The tied note
If a note is tied, the tied note (here the SECOND note), is NOT clapped.
I advise practicing 2 or 3 times per week on fixed days and then about 5 to 10 minutes per day.
Level 1 is a level without rests, in level 2 the rest is added, level 3 is not always more difficult than level 1 or 2 but often has different notes or rests.
Do not go too fast to the next exercise if you have not (completely) mastered the exercise you are doing. Just as in real time music, it is important to repeat, repeat and repeat again.
More about Course part 2 “the eighth notes”
In this course we will tap 1x per 3 counts for the eighths! (see ex.7)
In a 6 eighth measure you may tap with your foot on the 1st and the 4th note.
(in a 9 eights measure. tap your foot on the 1st the 4th and the 7th beat and in the 12 eighth you tap your foot on the 1st, the 4th, the 7th, and the 10th beat).
Sounds difficult? Don’t worry, the counts and the accents in the examples of the eighth-course are in the exercises itself.
In the exercises with the eighths, do NOT tap each note with your foot, but tap your foot on the place of the accents(>). Regular tapping like a clock remains valid here. In the exercise below, your foot will only tap on 1 and 4, while you clap your hands 6x per measure.
The(> = accent sign) indicates where you tap your FOOT (ex.7)
Try to emphasize this accent.
If you have followed the entire course, it might be fun to try out the exercises using only your 2 hands or only your 2 feet. A hand then taps the rhythm of your foot, the other the rhythm of your hands. Similarly with your feet.