Just Plain Fun

Balloonanimals Free or $1.99

Use this when a tricky spot needs work. Everytime the section is played correctly, the student can build more of the crazy balloon shape.

Bubble Harp $1.99

Bubble Harp draws bubbles around your fingertips, recording and replaying your movements while creating music. It’s a combination of drawing, animation, music, art, geometry, and gaming. You can record long movements of a single point, or stream many points out of your fingertips like ink. When you tap the screen’s edges, you can change from single points to streams of points, change graphic and sonic parameters, and post to Facebook. Multiple fingers and multiple people can touch the screen at once to create together. Bubble Harp was first released as a work of interactive art by Scott Sona Snibbe that was only available in galleries and museums. Now it’s available as an iPhone and iPad application that also makes music.

Circle of Fun Free

Great way to learn chord progressions and be creative.

Dust Busters Free/In-App Purchases

The premise: a “ninja” granny needs help dusting off the keys. My students thoroughly enjoyed this app (including those with little to a great deal of experience at the keys). However, they all claimed it was more fun than educational. The app has a large selection of songs from different genres and at various levels of difficulty. Additional songs are added automatically all the time.

iSpud Free Free

Use this to motivate during lessons. Dress the spud every time a phrase is played correctly.

Magic Piano Free

Just a good ole’ “why not” to have in your app options

Mini Piano Free

Just in case you need a keyboard on the go.

Pluto Piano Free with In-App Purchases

This app holds these awards: 2011 Best App Ever Award ✭ Voted Best Music Teaching App
✭ Editor’s Choice at BestAppsForKids.com ✭ “unique, well designed, high quality, kid-friendly… Pluto Learns Piano is a fantastic app!” ✭ Favorite App Award at MusiciansWithApps.com ✭
“true music education value”

The premise: help Pluto catch the musical notes while avoiding sharks, rocks and fearsome jellyfish in this awesome side scrolling adventure. Once you have mastered a song, play it on the piano included in the game!

My verdict is still out about how I might use this as a favored app during lab time but so far, students who have used the app like it.

Princess Piano: $1.99 Here’s Joy Morin’s blog about it.

Princess Piano has escaped a spell cast by an evil witch thanks to her magic ballet shoes. By learning to read and play music on the piano, you will help the princess dance her way back to the Cloud Kingdom to rescue her family. In this melodious adventure, Princess Piano introduces the notes of the scale and how they are written on the staff. As Princess Piano climbs the skies towards the Cloud Kingdom, you will start with simple melodies, but will soon progress to be able to play well-known folk songs and selections from classical masters such as Beethoven, Tchaikovsky, and Debussy. Along the way, you unlock outfits that Princess Piano can model in the “Dressing Room.” You can take photos of the ensembles you create and send them to your friends. And, using the music composition tool, you can even compose music yourself and have Princess Piano dance along to the notes of your very own song.

Though designed for younger audiences, budding musicians of any age are sure to find Princess Piano an engaging introduction to the magical world of music!

FYI: this has won some fans in my studio, it’s worth a look if you need an app to reinforce note reading on the staff.

Simon’s Cat Free

A creative musical app and a game too! The creative mode allows you to compose your own tunes, save them, and then watch as Simon’s Cat sings them back!. The game mode sees you taking on Simon’s Cat, as he tests your ability to follow his lead in a series of increasingly difficult musical challenges! Compose and save your tunes and play back previously saved tunes.

Symphonica Free with In-App Purchases

A conducting game where you tap the colour/type of sounds that appear to famous tunes such as Eine Kleine Nachtmusik…etc. When you first start using the app, you will need to walk through the story in order to complete the pieces and once a piece is completed, you can access it without playing the entire story again. I haven’t thought of how it could be used for lessons, labs or group classes but it makes listening to and moving to the rhythm of the music fun and interactive!”

-Thank you Drema for letting me know about this unique app!

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