Piano Notes for Kids
The Music Alphabet
Piano notes for kids in the song "The Music Alphabet" can help beginners relate note reading to the piano keyboard!
I wrote this little song for someone who is brand-new to note reading and even the names of the piano keys, but who has an analytical mind, and finds exercises intriguing rather than tedious!
My husband, in other words, whose brain is ahead of his fingers.
A new musician, he is struggling to combine fingers with piano keyboard with note reading! So perhaps "Piano Notes for Kids" should be changed to "for kids of all ages... "
Download printable music notes song "The Music Alphabet"
Okay - how should this song be attempted for a beginner piano player? Simple as this song is, to be able to play The Music Alphabet, students must:
- Be able to find Middle C on the piano keyboard
- Be able to identify Middle C on the grand staff
- Understand the layout of the grand staff, and where left & right hand "territories" lie
- Be able to follow a line of notes up and down (for help with that, acquaint them with "Wormies")
- Be able to read at least well enough to say "A, B, C, D, E, F, G!"
And you can probably think of more things...
So how would I start with this piece? Although the words of the song say "Place your thumbs on Middle D," it doesn't have to happen that way.
A student could just play the whole song with "pointer" finger, with one hand. That might make sense. I said "thumbs on middle D" because I know what happens when the thumbs share Middle C; the right hand always plays the C even if it is written for the bass clef to play.
My husband thought this was fun to play; what I think is fun is being able to recite the musical alphabet forwards and backwards 3 times in a row very fast, so that you can carry that skill to the piano keyboard and look at the piano keys and know what the names of the keys are, going left down the keyboard.
Hope some of your students find this piece helpful and even a little bit fun!
More songs especially for new beginners:
ABC & CDE - Two little 3-note songs focused on the Middle C area, one for left hand and one for right
Black Keys songs - a whole page of songs set to lyrics and poems, all on black keys!
C&B & C&D - Left hand, then right hand, play little songs with lyrics that make them fool-proof.
Dueling C's - a short song with 3 notes: B, Middle C, & D. The thumbs of each hand are "fighting" for the Middle C - but the music makes it plain which hand really owns it.
Fuzzy Wuzzy - this song is about a bear that WASN'T fuzzy. Quarter rests form part of the action! One-handed & two-handed arrangements.
Indian Dance - Though it sounds powerful (and even difficult with an added repetitive chord in left hand), it is very intuitive and repetitious, easily conquered in several lessons.
Jingle Bells - Is there a child who doesn't know this happy tune? Its repeated notes make up for the "tricky" skips in the melody - plus there are lettered notes in some of the arrangments!
Lavender's Blue - this pretty song forms part of the drama of Cinderella's rescue by the prince in the newest Cinderella movie with Lily James... little girls love to play this song!
Mary Had a Little Lamb on the white keys - even adults benefit from having this tune "in hand" - later they will learn much about using chords from simple little songs like this.
Music Alphabet Song - from A,B, & C in the left hand, through C, D, E, F, & G in the right hand, this song travels scale-wise through all the notes, to help a logical thinker conquer this concept.
Ode to Joy - like Mary Had a Little Lamb and Jingle Bells, this melody is well-known, and starts with finger 3 on E.
Peck! Peck! Peck! - a "shared-hands" melody, this cute song about chickens pecking on the ground to find their breakfast only moves by steps.
Pizza Please - Using just 3 notes, this song for left hand or right hand is actually Hot Cross Buns in disguise.
Sharks - Wait until kids have started working on the treble and bass clef with this dramatic 3-note song.
Snakes - the next step after students have conquered Wormies, this more intricate set of exercises is longer, with smaller note heads, but still moving just one step at a time in either direction
Snakes Go for a Walk - More exercises like Wormies and Snakes, but with "skips" hiding amongst the steps in each line. Line 1 has one hidden skip; line 2 has 2 hidden skips - you get the idea!
Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star - this song is so familiar that children will conquer it easily, especially because it moves by repeated steps. Excellent for memorizing and transposing.
Wormies - This little set of exercises asks beginners to choose ANY white key, and then decide whether to move up, down, or stay there, by looking at the next note. EASY.
An unfamiliar, pretty round, with poetic words from England of long ago. Not hard!
These note reading worksheets are different versions of grand staff, treble clef staff, and bass clef staff sheets. Free downloads!
What Do You Do with a GRUMPY (or Drunken) Sailor: free printable piano music that might become your student's favorite for a long time! FOUR arrangements, and TWO sets of lyrics!
My 13-year-old student loves House of the Rising Sun because he thinks it sounds like Star Wars music! Thank you for this amazing resource! Dana: Hi,
Greetings from Australia. I loved your posting on the beautiful Irish tune 'Slane'(Be Thou My Vision). The descriptions of the versions in different keys
You've done here a very good job! The most useful website for beginners in teaching!
I was looking for some easy (classical) pieces to play that wouldn't require much prep. I hit the jackpot here with classical and other, Celtic, lovely tunes! Thanks again!
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