Hymnal SR

Sight Reading out of the Hymnal

Two "secrets" to great sight reading include:

1) not having to look at the keyboard to find notes (gives you as much as double the amount of "reading" time!)

2) the ability to read in "groups" of notes versus one at a time. Hymns naturally come in logical "clusters" of 3-4 notes at a time!

Here are Guidelines & Tips for improving your sight reading from your hymnal:

- 100% accuracy (not even one wrong note - if you haven't read it, don't play it)

- Push tempo as fast as possible (while maintaining 100% accuracy)

- Stay in 1 key signature per week

- If helpful, play one time straight through hands separate, then play hands together (play each line 3x in a row)

- Look ahead for fingering direction

- Use good chord technique (play forward/into the piano, not down/onto it)

- Voice the tops of all chords

- Try not to look at the keyboard! Feel the keys!

- Play a mix of familiar and non-familiar hymns

Upper-level sight readers, do the following as well:

- Don’t look at keyboard at all (not even once for big jumps)

- Say chord names out loud (if you don’t recognize it, don’t say anything)

- Say Roman numerals out loud (if you don’t recognize it, don’t say anything)