Michele Schottenbauer Postmodern Composer and Music Educator

Updates to The Big Print Music Method

09.07.2014 Article

Rapidly expanding music method provides uniquely accessible educational materials.

Schottenbauer Publishing is proud to announce The Big Print Music Method, a long-awaited solution to music education! Originally designed by M. Schottenbauer over 30 years ago as a child, The Big Print Music Method provides big print instruction, fingering charts, musical notation, note names, and keyboards, in brightly coordinated colors.  

Instrumentation includes:

  • Violin, Viola, Cello, String Bass
  • Flute & Piccolo, Clarinet, Saxophone, Oboe, English Horn, Bassoon
  • Trumpet, Horn, Trombone, Euphonium, Tuba
  • Percussion, Mallets, Timpani/Tympani, Drumset
  • Guitar, Electric Bass Guitar
  • Recorder (Garklein, Sopranino, Soprano, Alto, Tenor, Bass)
  • Piano
  • Organ
  • Theory
  • Ear Training
  • Conducting

Consisting of over 20,000 pages of graphical instruction, The Big Print Method is a voluminous undertaking.  As of 2014, the following components have been published:

  • Method Boosters
  • 3-Note Exercise Books
  • Interval Exercises
  • Learning Alternate Fingerings
  • Interval Exercises with Alternate Fingerings
  • Learning String Crossing and Double Stops
  • Elementary Exercises
  • Big Print Tunes
  • Big Print Duets
  • Big Print Ensemble
  • Theory: Scales, Chords, & Arpeggios
  • Conducting Method Introductory Package (Books 1 & 2)

Method Boosters
Improve basic skills with large-print fingering charts, note names, and keyboards, with 1-note and 2-note exercises.  Transposition charts are included for relevant instruments. 

3-Note Exercise Books
With these big print exercises, students systematically hone fingering skills throughout the entire range. 

Interval Exercises
Learning interval fingering combinations and names has never been easier!  Big print exercises systematically teach all interval combinations, up to one octave.  

Learning Alternate Fingerings
Woodwind players learn alternate fingerings with this exercise book set. Exercises focus on comparison between normal and alternate fingerings, as well as presenting a series of exercises with half-step and whole-step combinations (2- and 3-note series). 

Interval Exercises with Alternate Fingerings
With this exercise book set, woodwind players receive extra support for learning alternate fingerings while playing intervals.  Every relevant interval combination of normal and alternate fingerings is presented for woodwinds. 

Learning String Crossing and Double Stops
These pictorial fingering charts enable string students to visualize and learn all combinations of notes up to one octave.  Overlapping with Interval Studies, this book is nevertheless quite useful due to the arrangement of intervals by type, rather than by starting note.  In this book, students practice intervals in parallel series, from low to high range. 

Elementary Exercises
Large-print, systematic exercises provide support for practicing basic techniques.  Lengthy introductory texts for recorders, woodwinds, brass, percussion, and strings provide tips for technique and practice. Exercises focus on long tones, short tones, 2- and 3-note combinations, and basic scales and arpeggios.

Big Print Tunes
Large-print children's folk tunes, transposed chromatically into every key within a 2-octave range, provide excellent practice on beginning instruments. The print size is the same font as Elementary Exercises above. Packages available from MusicaNeo include both pdf and MIDI computer files. Tunes are available in Treble Clef C, Treble Clef F, Low Treble Clef F, Alto Clef, Bass Clef C, and Bass Clef F. Tunes are organized into three levels of difficulty, corresponding to the structure of The Big Print Music Method: 
  • Level 1: Basic Duple Time
  • Level 2: Faster Tempo
  • Level 3: Triple Time

Big Print Duets
Large-print duets provide an easy start for pairs of similar instruments, such as two flutes or two clarinets. The Big Print Duet Exercises provide instructional guidance, plus audio and MIDI files, so that even one instrument can learn to play duets at home by playing along with the computer!

Big Print Ensemble
Large-print flexible ensemble music, plus audio and MIDI files, provide an easy start to learning ensemble music, even with one instrument! The Big Print Ensemble pieces are sold with one folk tune per package, and include parts for Treble instruments in C, F, Bb, and Eb, high and low Bass Clef instruments, and alto clef instruments, plus one to three unpitched percussion parts. Files include instructional guidance, plus audio and MIDI files, so that even one instrument can learn to play ensemble at home by playing along with the computer!

Theory: Scales, Chords, & Arpeggios
In this textbook and workbook, students can practice theory skills pictorially, with large-print keyboards and arrows.  Future theory books will address additional topics.

Conducting Method
Basic and complex time signatures and other essential conducting skills are taught in this series through large-print instruction, exercises, and a follow-along video.  Current selections include (1) Introductory Package with books and follow-along video, (2) Exercises with conductor's score and parts, and (3) Extended Exercises with conductor's score, parts, and audio files for the same set of exercises, plus additional practice pieces! Video and audio files are available from MusicaNeo only. 

Completion of the Series
The complete Big Print Music Method, including the main method series and other support materials, is expected by 2015. 

Currently, books from The Big Print Music Method are available at low-cost via direct download and printing from MusicaNeo. Selections from the method series are available in full-color print on high-quality paper from CreateSpace and Amazon.  

Additional information on the series, as well as free samples, are available from the Schottenbauer Publishing website and MusicaNeo.  Preview videos are available from YouTube.


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