Lesson 1: Piano Keys
The white keys on a piano just go through all the notes A-B-C-D-E-F-G and then start over again A-B-C-D-E-F-G all the way up the keyboard.
This story is to teach a small child where the keys are on a piano keyboard (but I think it works well for adults too!)
The House with Three Chimneys
Imagine that the group of 3 black notes is a house with 3 chimneys.
A couple called Gary and Ann live in the house (That is the white notes G and A between the 3 black notes)
Gary and Ann have a dog and he lives in a dog house (that’s the group of 2 black notes) in the front garden. (The dog is D in the ‘dog house’)
So can you remember the notes D, G and A now?
1. How many Gs are on the keyboard below? (Answers at the bottom of the page)
Gary and Ann don’t often use their back door because a big swarm of bees have built a hive under the eaves just outside the back door (B to the right of the house with 3 chimneys) so it is dangerous to use the back door and they always use the front door instead.
Gary and Ann have a cat too – and it lives in front of the dog house (C to the left of the ‘dog house’). It isn’t frightened of the dog and likes to watch what is happening on the street.
On the front door of the house with 3 chimneys there is a big green Freddy-the-frog door knocker (F to the left of the house with 3 chimneys)
Between the dog house and the main house there is a big entrance mat with the word ‘ENTRANCE’ written on it in large letters (E to the right of the dog house)
So can you name C, E, F and B on the keyboard below?
2. How many Fs are on this keyboard?
The black keys
The black keys are flats and sharps.
Flats are to the left of a white note, flattening or slightly lowering the note.
Sharps are to the right of the white note, sharpening or slightly raising the note.
Think about the note D.
D flat (written Db) is the black key on the left of D, down the keyboard.
D sharp (written D#) is the black key on the right, up the keyboard.
Now, you may be wondering the difference between, say, D# and Eb – Well, there is no difference - It is just 2 ways of saying the same note.
3. Can you find an F#, Ab and Bb on this keyboard?
What about Fb? There isn't a black key to the left of F. If you ever see music with something like F flat written on it (barbershop regularly has fun like this), it is not a mistake, it just means the white note instead - in this case, E.
This is a game. Try to score 10 to win. (Note: There are 2 Cs on the piano the lower one is called C1 and the other one is called C2)
If you can't see the game, you may need to download the latest version of Flash from Adobe).
Click 'Play Again' in the game above and this time ignore the questions and play the notes below (You'll need your sound turned on to hear it). 4. Can you name the song?
CDEC, CDEC, EFG, EFG, GAGFEC, GAGFEC...
And finally a fun video to watch
1. There are 3 Gs on the keyboard.
2. There are 3 Fs on the keyboard.
4. Frere Jacques.