Playing Games to Learn the Notes on a Piano
For my very beginning piano students, one of the first things we need to learn is where the notes from the musical alphabet are on the piano. Here are two of the piano note games I play to help my young students memorize where the notes are.
The Steps to Playing “Quick Note Finder” – Piano Note Games
- To start the game, the student and I stand shoulder to shoulder with our backs to the keyboard
- We then take turns back and forth calling out a specific note. Options are the musical alphabet notes A-C
- After the note is called out, it is a race to turn around and be the first to find and play the called note on the keyboard. The note can be played anywhere on the piano, as long as it is the correct note that was called out
- The person to play the correct note first wins the point. This continues back and forth until one of us reaches 10 points
A Variation on “Quick Note Finder”
As the student improves on these note finding skills, you can take the game to the next level and add an additional step that makes it harder.
- Follow the steps for the game above
- Decide before hand that you will race to play a note ABOVE or BELOW the note that was actually called out.
- Call out C, for example, then race to see who actually plays a D on the piano.
This second variation of this piano note game starts engaging two different sets of brain skills, which is something always used with piano playing.
Playing Blind Man’s Bluff-Piano Style
- Have student place their fingers on the notes C-G. This is the basic C finger position
- Have them play the five notes a few times, calling out what the notes are as they play
- Now, have the student close their eyes
- The teacher then calls out a note and the student must play the correct note
- When then student can play 10 notes correctly in under a minute, they have accomplished a level. You can reduce the time allotted as the student becomes more proficient at the game
Playing piano note games does not have to be complex to be helpful, and surprisingly, to be fun. Students love when you add some element of a game to their lesson. It is a natural motivator that keeps things interesting and a little competitive!