For beginners, and many not beginners, keeping their fingers on valves and keys, or thumbs and hands in the correct place, is a challenge. How’s that for an understatement?! An easy trick to help remind them where those digits go, or more importantly, where they need to stay, is to use a small bit of double-sided tape. Now, obviously, this won’t work for some places, and we should check that the tape will not harm the instrument or leave a residue before using it, but I have had great success using this simple trick. Put a half-inch square of that tape on each trumpet valve cap, flute key, or the like, and instantly students will sense when they are lifting their fingers too far. It’s amazing how judicious use of this stuff will surely provide some terrific results.

Peter Loel Boonshaft, Director of Education
KHS America

About the Author

Dr. Boonshaft, Director of Education for KHS America, is the author of the critically acclaimed best-selling books Teaching Music with Passion, Teaching Music with Purpose, and Teaching Music with Promise. He was honored by the National Association for Music Education and Music For All as the first recipient of the “George M. Parks Award for Leadership in Music Education.” Dr. Boonshaft was selected for the Center for Scholarly Research and Academic Excellence at Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY, where he is Professor Emeritus of Music.