Piano Keyboard Diagrams
to Print Out

Piano keyboard diagrams to print out - download these FREE piano key notes charts, blank, or  with piano letters note names for your beginner music students!  

Let them fill in the blank piano learning guides themselves, week by week, perhaps using the new lettered piano keys layout as a reference if necessary.

This printable piano keyboard shows the piano keys with the note names on them, white keys and black keys too!

Scroll down the page to find the free downloadable PDF links...

piano keyboard with note names

I have found that putting the piano keyboard sheet on students' lesson assignments every week ensures a gradual firm grasp of key names.

If you choose to print out this particular piano learning guide for your students (or yourself), I suggest laminating it, or using wide tape to cover the important parts of the page!  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 online piano keyboards below, and allow your students to write on the keyboard with an erasable felt pen, to use the keyboard over and over. (As long as "ghost images" don't remain behind!)

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, and stipulate that at home, they are to strike every one of THOSE keys up and down the keyboard every day.

"This week, I want you to write in all the D's, in pencil, and play every D, etc.", so that we keep returning to the paper piano keyboard layout week after week.

It's a BIG DEAL when we've gotten through all the white keys, and turn our attention to those mysterious black keys, with the double names... still, just one new key per week is focused on with this page at my studio.

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 below for you to write on!  Scroll down for the free downloadable PDF links...

piano keyboard diagram 4 octaves

I use "blank" paper keyboards with all my beginner piano, violin, voice and guitar students. 

Yes, guitar!  I write the names on the appropriate piano keys for the guitar strings - E, A, D, G, B, E - and that is how they learn to tune their instrument.  It is much more meaningful than using an electronic tuner.

I feel the electronic tuner should come LATER, after they understand how the piano keyboard relates to the strings and frets of the guitar. The piano keyboard is the Rosetta Stone for all musical instruments!

My students get to know the key names this way: the 3 black keys are "Grandma's house," and the 2 black keys are "the dog's house."

G = Grandma (who is the first person you meet inside GRANDMA'S house)

A = Ants that are hiding in Grandma's house - or it could be "A" for "Auntie".

B = Grandma's BACK door

C = the Cat

D = the Dog (which is inside the DOG house)

E = the Eagle, or the Elephant

F = Grandma's FRONT Door

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. (This exercise comes from one of the cute FJH Piano Adventures books.)

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. (As I mentioned above, 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!

This final keyboard, below, is very sharp-looking, but I don't use it much because I try to avoid print jobs that demand lots of heavy black ink!  Your own purposes may have a special use for this graphic, though:

3-octave piano keyboard diagram

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 and other instrumentalists, and vocalists? 

They, too, need to understand the topography of the piano keyboard, on which there seem to be black notes "missing" between the frets B and C, and E and F. 

How else will they truly understand the concept of half steps and whole steps?

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 keys on the keyboard sheet, and use them as a reference for learning how to tune their guitar to a piano. 

For guitar players, I have found this to be MUCH MORE EFFECTIVE than merely tuning with an electronic device.  The UNDERSTANDING is there.

First the open strings, then the frets...

Next, we learn all the names of the other keys.

Then, we use this online piano 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.")

I suggest you print out just one at first to see how you like the size.

The black keys always require 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!

Here are the links to the PDFs!





First, the keyboard with names on all white and black keys:


Download paper piano keys layout with key names on the keys



The keyboard that uses the least ink and has four of each key:


Download 4 octaves of blank piano keyboard with small keys, above (my personal favorite!)



The largest keys with three octaves:


Download printable piano keyboard with 3 octaves and large keys 





A plain paper blank piano keyboard sheet is one of the best all-around tools a music teacher has! 





The Adventures of Tonsta, Volume 1, is a book about a young boy travelling over mountains and fjords from village to village, encountering trolls and helping folk in distress.

The Adventures of Tonsta

A perfect read aloud storybook
for little boys or girls. 

The Adventures of Tonsta highlight the travels of a very young boy with a good heart, who goes about helping folk in trouble.  

With a red cap on his head and a sack of tools slung over his shoulder, Tonsta seems to meet people in distress wherever he goes.

Lots of trolls in this book.

Available at Amazon!





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MusicGardenStudios:
This is an absolutely wonderful site! As a voice and piano teacher looking for enrichment material for beginners, I have found your collections to be comprehensive and purposeful. It is clear that you are a wonderful musician and educator. Thank you!

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Joy:
I bought your Halloween Songs, wrote teacher accompaniment for some, and performed with 17 of my students in costume at an assisted living facility. It was a "win-win" situation. The kids and residents loved it and the parents were very pleased with the service aspect of their children's performance as well. Thank you for sharing these lovely pieces that introduce the minor key in a very simple and interesting way to early elementary students. 

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Cathy:
I recently purchased your arrangement of The Moldau (a longtime favorite of mine). I wasn't sure if any of my students would be interested in it, but to my amazement 3 of my students LOVE it. Thank you so much for making your great arrangement.

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What Other Visitors Have Said

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Suzie Neustadter Vocal Studio Not rated yet
Thank you for all of this helpful info!! I teach beginning piano to my voice students and this info was exactly what I needed!! Perfect! Best site I've …

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 …

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