Do you teach a musical instrument? Try this inexpensive and easy-to-make magnetic learning resource to teach note names and positions to your pupils!
Like all the best ideas, this one is pinched from someone else. My friend Sandie (herself a piano teacher) showed me a similar magnetic board she bought some years ago with movable note heads. Unfortunately, I couldn’t find one anywhere – so I decided to make one. It’s quick and easy, and all the materials are really inexpensive. Give it a try! Continue reading
For those who want it, here’s the sheet music to go with the teaching video of the “Superman” theme:
Sheet music – “Superman theme”
I’ve included all the finger numbers from the video and the note names for those who prefer these.
The original video is here.
Can you play this yet? Let me know in the comments below…
I’ve added the outer octaves to my free printable key guides, so now you can cover four octaves. These should fit any piano or keyboard with standard sized keys.
Make sure you line them up with the black keys (in groups of twos and threes) and make sure the third overlay starts with Middle C. On a piano, Middle C is approximately in the middle – obvious, I suppose!
On a 5 octave (61 key) electronic keyboard, Middle C is more to the left of centre and the first guide will line up with the lowest key on the keyboard.
Just download and print these files:
piano key overlay – middle octaves
piano key overlay – outer octaves
and then trim the guides to size.
What do you think? Are these going to be useful to you? Can you suggest any improvements? Please comment below so that I can keep updating and improving these resources. Or if your prefer, you can Contact Me directly.
Don’t have a piano? Want to try something out anyway? Check out this Flash implementation of a piano keyboard. You can play it either with your keyboard keys or your mouse – great fun!
Remember to turn up your speakers…
Yes, I know this is just a bit of fun – you’ll need a proper piano or keyboard to really learn to play. But you can certainly start to learn your notes on this, as well as just mess around for a bit! Experimentation often helps with piano learning, too.
What other piano resources would you like me to find or create for you?
If you’re still learning the names of the notes on your piano, here’s a printable guide I made for you. Many thanks to my good friend Sandie Barker who gave me the idea. The note names are clear and you also have the treble clef and bass clef notes to help you:
piano key overlays
Simply download the file here, print out onto paper or card and trim the two sections as shown. They will fit nicely behind the keys of most pianos and full-size keyboards. Put them in the centre of your piano and make sure you line up the pattern of black keys correctly, as shown in the picture.
I think these are a much better alternative to putting stickers on the keys of your beloved instrument. I would strongly recommend that you don’t put stickers on the keys of your piano or keyboard, even if the instructions say ‘easy to remove’ or ‘won’t leave marks’. I have seen keys ruined by them! These overlays can be removed and replaced whenever you need them.
One word of advice – use these key guides only for as long as you need them. Get to know your notes and then remove them when you can!
In case you haven’t found it yet, here’s a great website for downloading and printing free sheet music for piano: MakingMusicFun. I visit it from time to time to supplement the teaching books I use, particularly when a pupil needs more practice at the current level before progressing to the next page or section.
They have a good selection of scores from beginner to intermediate. Although the music is organised into levels, there is no actual piece-by-piece progression so I wouldn’t recommend using it in place of a progressive course. If you want to learn to play the piano and make steady progress in a clear and logical manner, I would recommend something like the Alfred’s Basic Adult Piano Course. But the Making Music Fun website is a very useful additional resource.
Take a look – what do you think?