Unit A6 – Articulation

By the end of unit A6, students should be comfortable playing basic staccato and legato notes. They should also:

  • be able to spot staccato dots in their pieces
  • be able to differentiate between the staccato dot and the dot of a dotted minim
  • be able to spot legato slurs in their pieces
  • be able to add dots/slurs to pieces, as they wish.

Students only need to be able to play staccato OR legato notes. But they should be able to play a piece that includes both staccato notes AND legato notes separately.

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  • Make staccato and legato sounds at the piano and discuss the sounds. You can link this to different characteristics e.g. animals, weather, moods, or sports or activities.
  • For staccato sounds some students find it helpful to imagine the piano keys are hot so they bounce off the keys
  • If a student is struggling to play legato sounds it can be useful to get them to really overlap the keys, so they can feel what it is like to make an exaggerated, sustained sound. Then gradually get them to reduce the amount of overlap until they get a good legato sound.


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Stage A The Stave and Symbols Quiz

This worksheet tests theoretical knowledge of the stave, bars, bar lines, time signatures, and concepts learned in Stage A: crotchets, minims, dotted minims, semibreves, crotchet rests, staccato, legato, piano, and forte.