Its nearly here!
Its been over a year since we launched level two of our printable music theory books series, and we are really excited to announce that level three of this series will finally be available next week!
Our products always have a long development timeline, as we have a slightly different approach to most when it comes to writing materials.
Central to our philosophy is:
You come first.
MOST theory books are written by one author. One author who arbitrarily decides the way things should be presented, the terminology that is included, and what is included at what level.
Even books that are written around an examination system still basically have one author, who will use the language and methods that they are familiar with.
What we’ve done is different. We use a team of writers, a team of editors, and we listen to your feedback and base what is included on that. For this reason we don’t even credit authors on any of our products.
Our philosophy of choice allows you to:
- Choose the paper size that suits you (A4 or Letter)
- Choose either American or European language styles (Quarter Note vs Crotchet etc)
- Pick and choose the materials that you include for your students.
As far as I’m aware our theory materials are the only ones available anywhere that offer this amount of choice. We have the only product that I’m aware of that offers a choice of language styles. Most books use one exclusively, and rarely even mention that another exists. Our unique printable distribution method allows for YOU to customize the materials you use to teach YOUR students.
To start the development on this level firstly we did an indepth survey of our existing users. In this we gained some really valuable information that really helped us shape the direction of these materials.
The most important things we learned were:
- Most of our users DON’T use printable music theory books to prepare for external examinations. When we created it we wanted to create a resource that included everything in the particular grade of ABRSM and Trinity College, thinking that teachers would want to use this material for exam preparation. We’ve discovered that this isn’t the case. Most users use this material as a general overview for their students, so we just need to concentrate on materials that give practical, everyday skills for the students. We discovered that we didn’t need to worry about including every last thing that is in an exam, just because it is in the syllabus.
- Most teachers still want to teach the classical style of theory and harmony, but they also would like to include some modern and jazz harmony as well. Of course there are some who just teach in a traditional style, and some who only teach modern, but by far the majority wanted a blend of both classical and modern styles. Therefore, that is what we are going to do with these books. They are going to include BOTH traditional harmony, including cadences, four part harmony, counterpoint etc AND modern harmony.
- Thirdly we also discovered that some of the manuscript sizes we had used for books one and two were too small for the students to use effectively. Therefore not only have we surveyed our users carefully to work out the most useful manuscript size for this new level, we have also completely REVISED book one and two to make them perfect in this area as well.
After our initial surveys we created an outline, which we then edited and re-edited until it met the needs of our clients. Then we got some talented writers on the job, and put together some drafts.
After that stage we then sent the book to many different experts around the world, and paid them for quality, page by page feedback.
It is this feedback that is the most valuable, and makes it so useful for teaching theory all around the world. For instance we thought that people everywhere use the shorthand notation of “b” for a 1st inversion of a triad, and “c” for a 2nd inversion. We discovered however that this notation is almost unknown in the United States & Canada! Therefore we added a whole section on figured bass to cover the topic properly.
After that we then completely revise the book, add to it where necessary and then completely check it over to make sure it is including everything. At this stage with this book we added another 10 pages!
If that isn’t enough we then send it to two more final proofreaders, one to check layout and one to check spelling and grammar.
The great thing is that the development process isn’t over after it is on the market. We are continually revising ALL our products, as we get valuable feedback from you – the users of the product.
So, if you are a user of Printable Music Theory Books levels one or two you’ll very shortly be able to download the new version with updated manuscript size completely FREE.
If you’re interested in level three, you’ll be able to get this when it goes on sale on Thursday December 9th. So just make sure that you’re on our mailing list, and we’ll send you an email then to let you know.