Playing a Rainbow: Color-Coded Notation for Xylophone

by Amy on April 27, 2012

One of my favorite session activities is using color-coded notation to teach children how to play xylophone, piano, and hand bells. Here is a video of two children I see for individual music therapy using color-coded notation to play the xylophone (or as my nephew calls it, the “ex-lophone :)). I didn’t need to give them much instruction for how to play – they got the idea right away!

So what goals are we working on during interventions such as these? For O. (boy) we are working on eye-hand coordination, motor planning, and sustained attention. For D. (girl) we are working on eye-hand coordination, color identification, and color matching. How do YOU use color-coded notation during your sessions?

{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Jay April 27, 2012 at 10:47 pm

Hi Amy,

Just took a look at your site and it looks like you’re doing great work in the sunshine state! I remember playing on the xylophone and a rainbow piano when I was a kid – loved those instruments. Keep up the great work!


Amy May 8, 2012 at 1:27 pm

I remember growing up on those instruments, too! Thanks for your lovely comments!
Amy :)


Vivi September 28, 2012 at 4:51 am

Where can I buy a xylophone like the one in the video?


Amy September 28, 2012 at 11:54 am

I buy most of my instruments at West Music. Here is the link to the xylophone (resonator bells) I am using in this video:

Hope that helps!


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