Piano keyboards, printable and FREE, in three different styles for music teachers. Let your piano and guitar students fill in the blank piano keys themselves, perhaps using the new lettered keyboard as a reference.
My newest printable piano keyboard shows the piano keys with the note names on them, white keys and black keys too!
If you choose to print out this particular piano keyboard for your students (or yourself), I suggest laminating it! Ink is so expensive, and we music teachers seem to need a lot of it.
You might also find it useful to laminate one of the blank sets of keys below, and allow your students to write on the keyboard with an erasable felt pen, to use the keyboard over and over.
I use "blank" paper keyboards with all my beginner piano and guitar students. I used to assign kids the entire paper to fill in the first week, but gradually I've come to assign just one note name per week ("This week, I want you to write in all the D's, in pencil"), so that we keep returning to the piano key chart week after week.
Below are two very different piano keyboards diagrams: the first one has small keys (uses less ink!), the second one is larger, with fewer keys. Both print out nicely on 8 1/2" by 11" paper, with plenty of white space left for you to write on!
My students get to know the key names based on an idea from www.tcwresources.com -- the 3 black keys are "Grandma's house," and the 2 black keys are "the dog's house."
For the first few months of their lessons, they must fill in the piano keyboard paper one key-name per week. The first week they write in all the D's, and the piano players practice a hand exercise to go with it.
This exercise, known as "Dipping Donuts," requires shaping the 1 and 3 fingers into a round hole like a donut, then pretending to "dip" it into an imaginary glass of milk, using a smooth wrist action.
So, all week long at home, they start their piano practice time by "dipping donuts" on all the D's. First one hand, then the other, strikes each D on the piano, from left to right, then back down again right to left (or the other way around -- some free spirit always wants to do it backwards, and it really doesn't matter!).
Make a technical exercise out of it, for fun
This reinforces not just the piano key's location and name, but also a flexible wrist motion. (This idea comes from FJH's My First Piano Adventure, Lesson Book A Pre-Reading, which is full of cute and effective ideas for beginners.) I frequently have to remind them not to stiff-handedly "splash" the donut into the milk, but gracefully bend the wrist. Over a period of weeks (and months of follow-up), it starts to become natural!
Keyboard recognition is important for all musicians
It's obvious why piano players need to start learning the names of the keys, but why guitarists? They, too, need to understand the topography of the piano keyboard, on which there seem to be black notes "missing" between B and C, and E and F.
When I give blank piano keys sheets to guitar beginners, the first thing we do is learn where the guitar strings are located on the piano. We highlight those, and use them as a reference for learning how to tune to a piano.
First the open strings, then the frets...
Next, we learn all the names of the other keys. Then, we use the blank keyboard sheet as a reference for saying note names as they play scales fret-by-fret from string to string. ("Open E, F, F#, G, G#...Open A, A#, etc.")
Make these sheets last -- they use a lot of ink!
I suggest you print out just one at first to see how you like the size. The black keys use a lot of ink, and so these paper keyboards are precious commodities once they are printed out! I don't pass out new ones. If a student rips the holes so the keyboard sheet doesn't stay in their 3-ring binder, then I mend the edge with wide tape folded over, and punch new holes!
Music education? Music resources?
A plain paper blank piano keyboard sheet is one of the best all-around tools a music teacher has!
Do you have a story or a question about music teaching? Share it!
Click below to see contributions from other visitors to this page...
How Can I Understand Piano? Not rated yet
I had a desire to play the piano. How do I know the chords and match it in playing. Please be a help to me I am a Liberian in Liberia. Dana: …
Real Size Keyboard Not rated yet
In the attached file I am providing the real dimensions of a piano keyboard. It's captured from Synthesia. If you need high resolution and lossless image …
Basic Foundation Not rated yet
I also agree but it is not only intended for students 6-13 years old. It is also the basic foundation of Music. If you can memorize thoroughly these keys …
Age level? Not rated yet
What age are these "lessons" intended for? Because it only took me a week to memorize the keys. Reply from Dana I agree that most students …