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How Do You Learn Your Scales?


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#1 Guest: flautist999_*

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Posted 28 October 2005 - 12:49

Hey! I'm hoping to take grade 4 flute in march but I'm finding it difficult to learn the required scales, i can't think of an easy way to learn and remember them, so does anyone have any useful tips? biggrin.gif
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#2 Guest: saxlover_*

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Posted 28 October 2005 - 13:19

Maybe set out to learn all the major ones first, over a time period of 2 weeks. Just focus on one or two for a few days and make sure you get them secure...then move on to new ones..but keep going back to the ones you've already learnt.

Once you've done the major scales , move on to the minors. etc. etc
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#3 Guest: anakrron_*

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Posted 28 October 2005 - 15:59

Yes, following on from Nat's advice you should concentrate on just a few scales each day, then after you mastered them move onto the next one... then every few days repeat all the ones you've learnt so far. To make learning scales less tedious, you could perhaps play them with different moods, some legato, stoccato, pesante, dolce etc (that's what I did for my clarinet G3, though it was in the Guildhall syllabus). It's just practice biggrin.gif
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#4 Guest: flautist999_*

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Posted 29 October 2005 - 08:44

Ok thanks! The forms have to go in this half term and now im pretty confident that i'll manage it! I've never failed and exam before and I skipped grade 2! Thanks for your help I always find it useful! biggrin.gif
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#5 Guest: Rach24_*

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Posted 14 November 2005 - 09:47

Scales are always a pain and it's something you just gotta do and I'm am not friends with them. I did my exam a couple of weeks ago and the best way I've found is to learn all the majors first, then the minors. Make yourself achieveable goals like lreaning a new scale and getting it going pretty good every two days or whatever ios comfortable. I also tried flash cards to remember which scales had which flats or sharps etc and got my brother to test me. Making up rhymes is always good too *blushes*
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#6 Guest: sbhoa_*

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Posted 14 November 2005 - 12:14

Do you know what the notes are?
Can you recite them?
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#7 Guest: bohemian_*

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Posted 14 November 2005 - 20:11

If you can describe exactly where you put your fingers for each note flawlessly then it's a good sign. Otherwise, get out the metronome, pick a couple of notes per day and play everything you need to starting on that note. Don't forget minors or arpeggios. You could make a chart to tick so you know you've practiced them all enough.
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#8 Guest: country_bumpkin_*

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Posted 14 November 2005 - 21:00

I write my scales out like this to help me remember them,
Majors:- C (-), D (F#, C#), Bb (Bb, Eb) etc etc writing all the accidentals in brackets, how many octaves etc. I then print all this out on an A4 sheet of paper (although my grade 8 scales have stretched to two sheets!!!!) and then put the sheet of scales up everywhere. I've got my grade 8 on December 9th and I've got sheets up in my room, in the music room at school, on the fridge, on the ceiling over my bed etc. It's worked for me in every exam so far! Helps me to memorise them.
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#9 Guest: Kate_*

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Posted 15 November 2005 - 20:45

The only advice I can give is NEVER read out of the book! only ever for fingerings or any little niggles you want to clear up. Otherwise it's a nightmare to learn them from memory!
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#10 Guest: Capoeira Girl_*

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Posted 15 November 2005 - 20:53

QUOTE(Kate @ Nov 16 2005, 09:45 AM)
The only advice I can give is NEVER read out of the book! only ever for fingerings or any little niggles you want to clear up.  Otherwise it's a nightmare to learn them from memory!

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Yo Kate,

Does not reading from the book help?
I've always read from the book (for cello not piano) and I've always been bad at scales.
Wow, that could be useful!

Liv
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#11 Guest: Storini_*

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Posted 15 November 2005 - 21:09

1. Memorise them.
2. Play them with your eyes shut.
3. Use a metronome occasionally as a check.
4. Job done.
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#12 Guest: sarah-flute_*

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Posted 15 November 2005 - 21:52

must depend on the person - & maybe the instrument? I find looking at them in the scale book really useful esp on the flute. not usually necessary on the piano as they're somehow more obvious with all the notes laid out for you.
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#13 Guest: saxlover_*

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Posted 15 November 2005 - 21:55

I hardly ever use the book, but if I do it is more for wind instruments than piano.
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#14 Guest: anacrusis_*

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Posted 23 November 2005 - 23:37

I tried learning all mine by ear - on recorder - and goofed up big time. I think it is best to do both - use the book some of the time and go without it at other times. Fingers need to know the sequences, but your brain also needs to know what the fingers are doing. I'd long known in theory what all the scales were, what key signatures etc - if you know the order of flats and sharps, then the flat major scales all have one more flat than the name of the scale (B flat major has a B flat and an E flat) and for the sharp major scales the leading or last note of the scale is always the new addition as you go up the sharps - thus C# is the leading note of D major, and the sharps for that scale are F# and C#. However the theory helps rather more when you can see all the notes laid out for you as on the piano - and for wind that is hopeless.

Flats - B E A D G C F
Sharps F C G D A E B

ie one is the reverse of the other.
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#15 Guest: Lisa87_*

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Posted 27 November 2005 - 01:07

I'm due to take grade 6 piano early next year & the scales for that are an absolute nightmare!!! ohmy.gif I took grade 4 in March this year & the scales came as a bit of a shock to me as the last exam I had taken was grade 1! I learnt them how other people have suggested learning them - majors first, then minors, then broke the arpeggios into small groups although they aren't as hard as scales so they weren't much of a problem. For grade 6 I have had to break the scales up into even more groups - majors, harmonic minors, melodic minors, staccatos, contrary motions, thirds etc, so I would suggest keeping the practise going even after your exam (I didn't - big mistake!) as then you won't have as much work to do for the next one. smile.gif

Good luck!

Lisa xxx
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