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#1838344 - 02/04/12 03:53 AM grade 1/2 sight reading material  
Joined: May 2011
Posts: 40
Peace-Piece Offline
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Peace-Piece  Offline
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Can anybody point me in the direction of grade 1 or 2 sight reading practice material that I can print of the web?

Preferably not complete scores or books I need to buy.





My Alfred Book 1 recordings: http://soundcloud.com/betapi/sets.
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#1838355 - 02/04/12 04:10 AM Re: grade 1/2 sight reading material [Re: Peace-Piece]  
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nikky Offline
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I printed some pages from here www.soundswell.co.uk but I too would like to know of other online resources.

I did buy Improve your sight-reading! Grade 1 Piano by Paul Harris, but it is only 40 pages. Because it's so thin, I haven't actually used it because I don't want to use it up. smirk I'd love to know if there are any sight-reading books that have enough pages to keep people busy for a long time.

#1838382 - 02/04/12 07:07 AM Re: grade 1/2 sight reading material [Re: Peace-Piece]  
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Maechre Offline
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Nikky, how are you going with the Introduction to Classics to Moderns? I'm still finding the Easy Classics to Moderns too hard, but there are plenty of pieces in those four books. (160 pages in "The Joy of First Classics" books 1+2 together, and 320 pages in "Easy Classics to Moderns" books 1+2 together. "The Joy of First Classics" books are easier than the latter.)

Peace-Piece: The books I mentioned above start at about Grade 3 sight-reading level (a general guess by me), but they might be something to keep in mind for later.

You might also want to check out this thread and this thread.


I love sight-reading! One day I will master it.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Acrozius?feature=mhee
#1838456 - 02/04/12 11:30 AM Re: grade 1/2 sight reading material [Re: Maechre]  
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I read the thread title as 'grade one half...' which about describes my sight reading level.


Having power is not nearly as important as what you choose to do with it.
– Roald Dahl

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#1839235 - 02/05/12 10:45 PM Re: grade 1/2 sight reading material [Re: Maechre]  
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nikky Offline
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Originally Posted by Maechre
Nikky, how are you going with the Introduction to Classics to Moderns?


Intro to Classics... is a great book, perfect for my level. The Easy Classic ones are too hard for me too, but at least its something to work up to. I had a look on amazon at the other books you mention (The Joy....) one of them had preview pages, and its very similar to the Intro to Classics... so I'll be adding those to my list.

Do you improve your sight-reading by practicing? or are there instruction books that can teach someone how to get better?

#1839267 - 02/05/12 11:59 PM Re: grade 1/2 sight reading material [Re: Peace-Piece]  
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Peace-Piece Offline
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Do you have a teacher nikky? Unless there's some major pedagogical field i don't know about, I think it is mostly practice. There a few things that I keep in mind that seem to help: Finding starting finger position and check key sig./ scanning ahead for any movement of hand to change fingering / counting the first few bars and hearing how the melody should sound in my head.

The go and hope for the best. One other thing that helped me starting out on hands together sight reading, was to scan ahead a measure or two for either the bass or treble clef and then come back to read the second line. Taking in two lines at once seems harder. I do it sort of like a typewriter.

I have the paul harris grade 2 book. The problem is you get through them so quickly. That's why I was hoping there was a big colelction online somewhere. Guess I'll have to buy another book. I think I'm about grade 2/3, but I;m taking the grade 1 exam soon so wanted to practice some similar graded material.

Hello from melbourne maechre and nikky. Have either of you taken the ameb grade 1 exam per chance?


My Alfred Book 1 recordings: http://soundcloud.com/betapi/sets.
#1839317 - 02/06/12 02:47 AM Re: grade 1/2 sight reading material [Re: Peace-Piece]  
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Maechre Offline
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Maechre  Offline
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Originally Posted by nikky
Originally Posted by Maechre
Nikky, how are you going with the Introduction to Classics to Moderns?


Intro to Classics... is a great book, perfect for my level. The Easy Classic ones are too hard for me too, but at least its something to work up to. I had a look on amazon at the other books you mention (The Joy....) one of them had preview pages, and its very similar to the Intro to Classics... so I'll be adding those to my list.

Do you improve your sight-reading by practicing? or are there instruction books that can teach someone how to get better?

The Joy of First Classics books are great (at least, the second is -- the first is still to arrive but they'll be the same level) and I seem to be able to play through them with very little hiccups. I've also found since working through the "Joy of" book my reading of the "Easy Classics" is actually easier and I'm making less mistakes. So I'm eager for the first "Joy of" book to come so I can focus on those.

I think my reading ahead and general pattern recognition has improved since working on the easier books, and this is without conscious effort but daily practice.

Do you improve your sight-reading by practising? That's where it's at Nikky. Practise daily. I do at least two pages a day at my level -- where I'm getting most of the piece right. It doesn't have to be perfect, because it is sight-reading, after all.

I don't think there's much you can learn from an instruction manual that you can't learn from the internet. I could go on and on about what I've learnt. There are a couple of tricks that can help though.

Give yourself up to 30 seconds before you start to play and follow this checklist:
1. What's the time signature?
2. What's the key signature?
3. What's the tempo?/What feel will it have? (There could also be hints to this in the title.)
4. Look for repeated patterns/easy patterns -- scales or broken chords, or repeated notes.
5. Look for difficult parts so you know what's coming.
6. Count the first two bars before you start playing -- the first bar out loud, and the second in your head. (Sometimes I count out loud through a whole piece!)

If you're doing that, my best advice is to find as much material as you can at a comfortable level (that's without too many hiccups, but it doesn't have to be up to speed) and do at least two pages a day. As you go through them, even if it's much slower than the given tempo, your pattern recognition should improve, and the faster you can recognise patterns, the more quickly you can read. The main limiting factor is that it's impossible to sight-read anywhere over your technical skill at the time of the reading. If you see a descending major scale and recognise it instantly, you can only play it as fast as your technical skill allows.

Back to the practising question, my strongest belief as far as improving your sight-reading is if you practise daily, and if you stay on the same level for long enough that you become truly proficient at that level, you'll improve and be ready to move on to the next level. Then find as much material as you can at the next level and repeat.

Originally Posted by Peace-Piece
I have the paul harris grade 2 book. The problem is you get through them so quickly. That's why I was hoping there was a big colelction online somewhere. Guess I'll have to buy another book. I think I'm about grade 2/3, but I;m taking the grade 1 exam soon so wanted to practice some similar graded material.

Hello from melbourne maechre and nikky. Have either of you taken the ameb grade 1 exam per chance?

I haven't taken the AMEB Grade 1 exam, sorry.

I found the Paul Harris books far too short as well. When I went on to the next book I was never really ready. I went all the way to book 7. I have book 8, but I was barely reading well at Grade 5 so I stopped and discovered my new approach. I occasionally pick up that Grade 7 book and see how I go. It varies.

Maybe you can do what I did -- go as far as you can in the Paul Harris books as long as you're not making mistakes in every bar, and then pick up the Joy of First Classics books and work through them, playing slowly if you need to, or only one line a day if it's hard on your mind. I'm not sure how this would work for other people, but I know I've seen the most improvement in my sight-reading in the last few weeks since I got my "Easy Classics to Moderns" and "The Joy of First Classics" books. That's after a whole year of working with the Paul Harris books. I'm sure Improve Your Sight-Reading! helped, but not as I'd expected.


I love sight-reading! One day I will master it.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Acrozius?feature=mhee
#1842214 - 02/10/12 09:41 PM Re: grade 1/2 sight reading material [Re: Peace-Piece]  
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nikky Offline
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Peace-Piece and Maechre - you have both given excellent info, I really appreciate it. smile I copy'n'pasted parts of both your posts to Word earlier in the week and printed it out. It's stuck on the wall near my DP. grin My tempo/feel for a piece kinda sucks at the moment. I'm so focused on remembering what the notes are that I don't pay attention on how to play the piece only on hitting the right keys. I have a lot to learn!

I am only doing pieces from my sheet music books that are in the key of C as I haven't really learnt anything of the others properly yet. By the end of this term in my class we will have covered the scale and chords for C major, A minor, G major and F major (woohoo!) so I'm hoping things will get better, the more I understand how it all works.

So to answer your question Peace-Piece I have a teacher, in that I attend adult beginner classes - there are 6 of us in the class. We are given course material for each term. First lesson for the year was last week - its good fun.


Peace-Piece - no I haven't taken any exams. I would like to do it eventually. Please share your experience when you sit for your exam 1. Good luck. wink

BTW I have bookmarked your link because I am almost up to page 120 of Alfred's book 1 all-in-one. Over summer when the classes weren't running, I started on the Alfred's book. I find the CDs that came with the book to be too 'messy'. Your recordings let me clearly hear what my own pieces should sound like, its been helping me a lot! thumb

#1842257 - 02/10/12 11:01 PM Re: grade 1/2 sight reading material [Re: Peace-Piece]  
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Maechre Offline
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Maechre  Offline
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It's a necessary skill to be able to recognise the notes by name and to know what that translates to on the keyboard, one reason being that it helps when there are big leaps or some rests where you can't really read intervallically. But once you can find that "starting note" of a phrase, it helps you play it quickly to be able to play it by interval and pattern from there - up a 2nd, down a 2nd, up a 3rd, up a 2nd, full bar rest, your note's G, minor ascending chord pattern, descending five-note minor scale, next line down starts with a G, etc.
But that is an acquired skill after much practice, and you're doing really well! Stick with it and let us know how you're doing.
I've been thinking about starting a thread like the Piano Bar but for sight-reading. What do you guys think?


I love sight-reading! One day I will master it.

http://www.youtube.com/user/Acrozius?feature=mhee
#2023195 - 01/29/13 03:07 AM Re: grade 1/2 sight reading material [Re: Peace-Piece]  
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Evan R. Murphy Offline
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Evan R. Murphy  Offline
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Seattle, WA, USA
This thread is several months old, but it comes up in a lot of search results, so I wanted to chime in. SightReadingMastery (website I work on) now has sight reading material for grades 1 & 2. Here are some samples:

http://sightreadingmastery.com/piano/grade1
http://sightreadingmastery.com/piano/grade2

All exercises are printable. If you're interested in exploring more of the library, there is a free trial. Beyond that Piano World members are also currently eligible for a discount (see signature).

Peace-Peace and nikky, how is your sight reading going these days?


SightReadingMastery – Master Sight Reading with Real Music

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