Composing Using Notepad with Beginning String Instrumentalists

Composing Using Notepad with Beginning String instrumentalists

Robin Naylor
[email protected]

TI:ME Technology Areas Addressed:

Notation Software






Finale Notepad


30 Minutes

Prior Knowledge and Skills:

Half a year of lessons once a week, four orchestra rehearsals & their first concert.

MENC Standards Addressed:

MENC 2: Performing on instruments, alone and with others, a varied repertoire of music.
MENC 4: Composing and Arranging Music within specified guidelines.
MENC 5: Reading and notating music.


Finale Notepad


Beginning string students will compose a single-line piece using their instrument, which will help them to improve their
note reading skills & will help them to appreciate the value of notation.


1. Students will be limited to the notes in the D Major scale & will only be allowed to use notes and rhythms they can play on their instrument.

2. They will use 2 or more measures for each phrase, with a minimum of 8 measures.

3. The 1st phrase will end on any note of the scale except the tonic. (Question)

The 2nd phrase will end on the dominant. (Answer)

4. They will come up with a fun title using the text tool & dedicate it to someone (their dog…).


1. Notes & rhythms are accurately notated on the staff. The teacher plays the piece first to see if that is how they wanted it to sound.

2. Students play their piece accurately.

Follow Up:

Do a “free-form” composition with less guidelines & then no guidelines. Discuss in class why or why not the piece does or does not work musically.

Items to Purchase:

None. Just use existing computers in school.

When budget should be submitted:


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