Jellybean Tunes Holiday Edition is an interesting universal app that lets children play Christmas tunes as well as become exposed to the concepts of reading music. Three game modes are included: the playing of these songs by tapping their individual notes, a quiz to see if the student has learned the notes by sound as well as placements on the sheet music, and the ability to make one's own music. The music selections are popular Christmas songs, pleasant to listen to as well as to play.
I never got the hang of reading music in school, much to the frustration of music teachers. Looking at this app as a novice, I think it is on the right path to being very educational, but I do think some things could be added. Although not commonly seen on sheet music, I wish there were an option of the notes being displayed at the side of the staff in full view of the player as a point of reference, and I would like to be able to tap to hear these notes in the interest of beginning to familiarize myself with the sounds they make in correlation to there names and arrangement within the sheet music. Being able to study this as the tunes are being tapped would go a long way in understanding what I was looking at. I am glad that when individual notes are tapped during the playing of the music, their names are displayed such as “a” or “d”, but I would still like to see all the notes listed the corresponding lines and spaces of the staff itself. This would be especially helpful in the creation of one’s own music; as of now, I am not aware of what notes there are to choose from or where to tap to find these find specific sounds that I have heard.
I also would like to see a message to parents on how to fully utilize this app, especially for parents who have no music experience. I would love to fully explain to my son the basic principles of reading music, but I don’t have the vocabulary or the insight to do so. As of now, this is just a tapping and music game to him, but I know that this could be the basics of understanding music if I knew how to help him further.