I.TuThe Whole Note

A new note-value - the whole note.

A couple of useful icons also appear for the first time today. Wherever you see a metronome icon (except for the one on the left!) you can use it to open a menu of metronomes at different speeds and in different metres. You can stop the metronome (and any other sound file that doesn't have it's own stop btton) by clicking on the black square in the bottom right corner of the screen.

You'll also see a keyboard icon to the left of some of the pieces. Clicking on this will reveal some extra advice for those of you working through toolkit on keyboard.

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The Whole-Note

1This section introduces a new note-value, the whole-note / semibreve, an empty oval without a stem. A whole-note is four times longer than a quarter-note. (As in life, four quarters equal a whole). So when a quarter-note lasts for one beat, a whole-note must last for four.

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2In the music below, the time-signature tells us that there are four quarter-notes in a bar, so the whole-notes / semibreves fill a bar each.

Count 1 - 2 - 3 - 4 etc., play a new note on each '1' and hold it through the bar.

  • Choose 'Fours' and 120bpm from the metronome list.
  • You can stop the metronome with the black button bottom-right.
  • The keyboard symbol opens up hints for keyboard players.
  • Give yourself at least two bars in.

It should have sounded like this (on C, Bb & Eb instruments).

3Now play alternating bars of quarter-notes and whole notes . . . two bars in . . .


4Here's a similar one. There are no counts written in this time, but it's still in 4/4 and still at the same tempo. There are eight bars, so go straight from one line to the next as if you were reading text. At least two bars in . . .


It should have sounded something like this (on C, Bb & Eb instruments).

5You need to get used to playing in time with your own internal pulse, so try the next piece without the metronome first. Count two bars in for yourself and play it a number of times . . .


It should have sounded something like this.


Finally, here is a 4-bar rhythm for you to notate. There are two bars in, as usual, and then nothing you haven't read or played before. The audio player can be stopped and started if that's helpful, and you can click on the question mark to check your answer. (No peeking). Two bars in . . .

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If that was right, that's great. If it wasn't right, work out why before you move on.