Arranging for Piano

Arranging for Piano

Meryl Moore
[email protected]
Portsmouth High School

TI:ME Technology Areas Addressed:

Electronic Musical Instruments


High School


General Music


Keyboards with computers and notation software such as Finale


85 Minutes

Prior Knowledge and Skills:

Beginner piano skills
Can read treble and bass clef
Know how to create chords
Know how to use notation software

NAfME Standard of 1994 Addressed:

NAfME Standard of 1994: Performing on instruments, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music.

NAfME 2014: Performing 

NAfME Standard of 1994: Composing and Arranging Music within specified guidelines.
NAfME Standard of 1994: Reading and notating music.

NAfME 2014: Creating 


Each student needs keyboard with computer and notation software.
Each student needs to choose a song with melody and chord symbols


Students will practice using notation software.
Students will transcribe music written with chord symbols only into standard notation for piano.
Students will spell and notate chords of different types.


1.Teacher approves student’s choice of music, a melody with chord symbols. Chord types should be within range of those learned in class.
2.Using notation software, student creates a piano score and enters melody for RH (and chord symbols)(35 minutes)
3.Student notates block chords in standard notation for LH where chord changes occur. (35 minutes)
4.Student practices playing song with block chords. (10 minutes)


Teacher evaluates student’s success with notation of melody and setting up piano score.
Teacher checks accuracy of chord spellings and rhythmic placement.

Follow Up:

Follow up lesson on chord inversions and creating smooth left hand parts.
Follow up activity:Students invert and/or arpeggiate chords to create smooth LH accompaniment.
Follow up performance evaluation after song is learned

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