Skip to content

10 Tunes to Teach By Ear

Added to website 12/02/2024. Updated 10/06/2024.

This resource is for string, brass, woodwind, piano and keyboard players of all abilities. There are ten attractive tunes in a variety of genres, each one accompanied by advice on how to teach it by ear. Each tune has accompanying parts. The material can be used with individuals, small and large groups, ensembles and whole class.

This resource will help pupils develop their aural and ensemble skills. It will also help to consolidate technical learning. Advice is given on how to adapt material for a range of abilities, and ensure that there is enough challenge for more advanced pupils. It is particularly aimed at helping you teach pupils tunes they don’t already know – as opposed to helping them work out tunes they do already know.

For strings, technical details such as bowing and fingering are left to the teacher’s discretion, or the choice of the pupil.

The brass resource is for all brass instruments. Keys and register can be altered as needed to accommodate the needs of the pupils: their experience and level of performance.

For woodwind, phrasing, articulation and dynamics are left to the teacher’s discretion, or the choice of the pupil. Material is written for flutes and clarinets, and can be adapted for all woodwind instruments. Keys and register can be altered to accommodate different levels of ability.

The piano and keyboard resource contains tunes with suggested chords, for use by keyboard players. Material can also be used with tuned percussion. Tunes can be played at any octave which allows for more than one player per instrument. Parts can be played with either right hand or left. More advanced players can learn the tune and an accompanying part, and play together, with particularly advanced players playing the tune in the left hand.

The top tips will help you teach the tunes no matter what your previous experience is of playing/teaching by ear. My videos explain further the various methods of teaching by ear. These can be found on my website.

To understand how to integrate these methods into a holistic approach, including playing from notation, developing creativity and consolidating technique, please see my books, Wild About Strings, Wild About Brass, Wild About Woodwind, and Wild About Piano and Keyboards, which are available from Amazon, and other online retailers.

About the Provider

Music Wild

Music Wild provides resources and training for instrumental teachers as well as consultancy for Music Hub leads.