Key Identification Game

Wow, I am a slacker!  All this teaching at school and working through some issues with my children has taken a huge toll on my creativity and blog time.  I took these pictures back in October, and decided it was high time to get them uploaded.

My son, The Rock, was working on identifying key names at the time.  Now, this child’s favorite toys are cowboy and indian plastic figures.  He will play for hours with those little plastic men, so I devised a way cool (in his mind) game for piano.

First, we started off with our men.  The Rock decided to be the green army man, and placed his guy at the top of the top of the keyboard.  I was assigned the blue cowboy, and my guy started out at the bottom of the keyboard. 

Then, The Rock drew a card, and moved his man to the appropirate key.  I did the same, and we kept going along like that.  Our goal was to get our little man to the opposite end of the keyboard first.

My son, of course, won.  Funny how I never seem to win a game.  You’d think I stacked the deck, or “accidentally” let him have two turns in a row every now and again.  Oh, well. 😉

You can make cards with the letter names easily enough, or you can use my Musical Alphabet Cards.  You will want to pring up several sets of the cards for this game – I’d suggest at least 5.  This game can be modified to include sharps and flats, tones of a particular scale, or whatever you can come up with.  Have fun.  My son and I sure did.

Keyboard Three-in-a Row Game

So, you’ve met The Rock, my darling bespeceled boy on the right.  Next to him is his equally darling brother, who I will call Dash.  Why Dash, you ask?  Well, this child never sits still.  Ever.  Bless his poor school teacher’s heart.  Dash is always on the move – running, jumping, flipping, bouncing,… well, you get the idea.  He is something else in his gymnastics class –  he is just amazing to watch.

Dash loves music.  I  keep his lessons short but frequent.  One of the luxuries of teaching your own child, I suppose.  I assign him 2 pieces at a time.  When he has these down, I teach him another two.  He is bright, and catches on quick.

IMG_1350As a reward for keeping focused, Dash got to play a game with his brother.  The object of the game is to get 3 markers of your color in a row.  I got this game from The Big Book of Music Games, but you could easily adapt it with a keyboard chart and an alphabet spinner of some sort.  The boys took turns spinning the spinner, and putting a marker on the keyboard note.  Luckily, the game ended in a tie, so both Dash and The Rock walked away happy.

Key Words

Sharon had a great idea for a variation on the word flashcards. Instead of putting the letters on a staff, why not put them on the keyboard as well? Well, here they are. It would be fun to mix the cards together with the other set to really keep students on their toes!

Key WordsKey Word Flashcards





Christmas Tree Folder Game

With it’s several variations, this is a great game for Christmas group lessons where students are of different levels. A Christmas tree is adorned with musical alphabet ornaments. “Decorate” the tree by matching either the note on the keyboard, bass clef note, treble clef note, or key signature to the tree. Can be played individually as well as in a group.

Christmas Tree Folder Game

Christmas Tree Folder Game





Ice Cream Keyboard Matching Game

Ahh, more procrastination. My student teacher has some primer students who need a little more practice identifying notes on the keyboard. So, here is a yummy game to play to help learn those notes. Cut each ice cream scoop from the cone, and have students match them back up. There are 3 sets of ice cream cones, so each key gets to be on the vanilla, chocolate, and strawberry scoop. These could also be easily mounted to a file folder, making a cute folder game.

Ice Cream Key NamesIce Cream Keyboard Matching Game





Candyland – Music Style

This is a fun variation of the game Candyland. This great idea came from Rachel on the Yahoo piano teachers group. To make this game, you will need a Candyland game. On each square, write A, B, C, D, E, F, and G. On the pink candy spaces, draw a bass clef, treble clef, piano, forte, mezzo forte, and a double bar line. Draw a card from the pile, name the note, and move to the corresponding space. If you draw a card with double notes, you get to move double the spaces.

Sometimes I will send this home with children who are struggling with notes, and tell them it counts as practice time. They love that, and come back the next week much better at their notes.

I also made up cards that show the notes on the keyboard, so this game can be used when teaching that skill as well.

CandylandCandy Land Cards Bass C to Treble G

Candyland Cards Set B Add this to the previous set, and you will have all notes from Low C to High C.

Candyland Cards – keyboard notes