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I Like Sticky Candyfloss: A Fun Finger Strengthening Exercise
Here is a catchy little finger strengthening exercise perfect for first piano lessons, that is excellent for developing and increasing finger co-ordination. Ask the child whether they prefer Sticky Candy floss or Chewy Chocolate Bars? (you will find that you can adapt the words quite easily, once I even changed it to Cheese and Onion Crisps!) First explain that this is quite a tricky little game and challenge them to see if they can do it? An element of competition always seems to help! Explain that when you do this exercise each finger has its own go in turn.
Before you start you can practice with your fingers on your leg. This helps to make it clear which fingers to play. It also helps if you actually touch the fingers, 1&2, 2&3, 3&4, 4&5 in pairs, to show the pattern. At first, it is particularly difficult to control fingers 4&5 – this is completely normal, and the more you try, the easier it will get. With a few goes it will soon become clear. Then your little pupil will find it great fun to try to play it faster and demonstrate how much easier they find it!
Once they have mastered this finger strengthening exercise with each hand separately, try hands together. Both hands should start with 1 (thumb) on Middle C. This sounds very impressive and is easier than it sounds – as both hands are doing exactly the same thing. This is fun and very satisfying!