Printable music notes are really all these "Wormies" consist of: simple exercises that creep slowly along.
This free sheet music for beginner pianists is a gentle, fun way to break into reading notes. No understanding of correct fingering required - use the "pointer" finger!
Scroll down the page for the link to the free printable music sheet.
The only question is "Which way does the note go?"
These Wormies are an easy way for very young musicians to try their hand at notereading. Treating the musical staff like a ladder, students ask themselves, "Up? Down? Or the same?"
Pick any key to start on -- you don't need to be able to find the correct place to start on the staff! The whole point of this exercise is just to determine the direction of the notes, not the actual note names.
Forget about fingering
I ask students not to worry about good fingering. Using only their pointer finger (finger 2) and choosing any white note on which to begin, they go up or down the "ladder" as they read across each Wormie.
Don't play them too many times
Usually, I ask kids to play one Wormie a day just two times (to help prevent memorization!), and to try a different Wormie every day.
At the next lesson, instead of hearing them play ALL the Wormies, I'll ask them to choose their favorite to play for me. It's usually number 4, because they know it's hardest!
No extra symbols to worry about
Notice that there are no clef symbols -- just a plain, uncluttered staff with lines and spaces. With notes made extra large on purpose, following the very short lines of "music" is pretty easy.
There's another version, longer & trickier
Snakes, which are just longer Wormies, is the next note-reading step.
Very likely, your beginning notereaders can by-pass Wormies altogether...but even older beginners of ten and eleven love the simplicity of Wormies, and quickly grasp the principle of moving notes.
It's a beginning!
The link for "Wormies" printable sheet music:
Download Printable Music Notes Wormies
ABC & CDE - Two little 3-note songs focused on the Middle C area, one for left hand and one for right
Black Keys songs - songs set to lyrics and poems, all on black keys!
C&B & C&D - Left hand, then right hand, each 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 arrangements!
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 bass clef before you give them 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 (also called "Crickets Go Hopping") - 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.
When the Saints Go Marching In - just 5 notes, with no stretches or replacements, make up this familiar song!
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.
All the first-year material I give my beginner students.
Piano keyboard sheets, scales, chords, note-reading exercises, and over 256 pages of music!
This beautiful song book for piano & voice "Esther, For Such a Time as This", available as a digital download, tells the riveting story of the time when Jews in ancient Persia faced a foe named Haman, and how a brave young queen risked her life to save her people.
A good choice for a singing story-teller, an operatic group, a short theater production, or a class of children!
This book is also available from Amazon as a paperback.
This book is available as a digital download from this site. Visit this page to see some free examples from the book.
It is also available from Amazon as a paperback!
This is the perfect easy start for little pianists.
And when they start reading white-key notes on the staff, this is a fun easy resource to say each week, "Choose a new black-key song at home this week and figure it out to show me next lesson!" They will be spending more time at the piano.
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 - including one who gives him a Christmas gift!
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.
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you....I have a lot of books on graded pieces but not a lot of beginner pieces.
I use material I have written myself together with books I encourage my parents to buy... but sometimes parents just can't afford a book- and as a teacher you sometimes do find your self searching for material....Thank you thank you thank you once again!
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Thanks for the Wormies! Not rated yet
Hi, I'm a music teacher working in Thailand and I have been frustrated that my students learn the song BEFORE they learn the notes. I mean they don't really …
Hi, I'm Dana! (Say that like "Anna".) I'm the owner of Music-for-Music-Teachers.com, and a newer site, SingTheBibleStory.com.
Like some of you, I've been playing the piano since early childhood, and have added a few other instruments along the way, plus an interest in arranging and composing music.
You can find out more about me and the reason for this website at my About Me page.