Part #2: STEMS

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Stems are Vertical Lines.

Everyone is familiar with stems that support leaves, flowers, and fruits.  Notes utilize stems in much the same way. 

Stems = Note Support

Stems visually anchor note heads and help to define a note’s rhythmic duration by joining note-material elements together. Stems attach to note heads in one of two precise ways.

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Going Upward

(attached to the right side of the note head)

Going Downward

(attached to the left side of the note head)

Stems go upward when the note head is below the middle line of the staff.

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In addition to connecting to note heads, stems also connect to beams. 

Let’s explore Part #3: BEAMS

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Whether a stem is an up-stem or down-stem, it has the same effect.

Stems go downward when the note head is on the middle line or higher.

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