Suck It Up! (Straws) | Music Terms Review Game

Here’s a fun game for your music lab time or music camp. Suck It Up! divides groups of students in two teams, racing against each other to answer 10 unit review questions. The teams use straws to carry answers from the answer square table the game board table. The first team to get all 10 answers correct wins the game.

Review anything you like – Music Terms, Music Composers, Note Names, etc. The game is totally flexible.

Download and Print Music Lesson Game

Suck It Up! | Music Lesson Review Game


The game instructions, game board and answer squares are all included in the printable packet.



Note Name & Rhythm Relay | Music Theory Game

Activity and learning always work well together, so this game is sure to be a hit with your young piano students.

I’ve included ideas for a Note Name Relay and a Rhythm Relay below.

Note Name Relay

Step 1 – Teacher calls out note and a clef.

Step 2 – Student in position #1 select correct note and runs to position #2.

Step 3 – Student in position #2 select “Right Hand” or “Left Hand” card and runs to position #3.

Step 4 – Student in position #3 reads the fingering above the note, selects the card with the correct finger circled and runs to the finish line.


Teacher calls out “Treble Clef – G”

Suzie selects the Treble Clef – G, and runs to Julie.

Julie sees that it’s a note in the treble clef. She selects “Right Hand”, card and runs to Mandy.

Mandy reads the fingering above the note, selects the correct number card and runs to the finish line.


Rhythm Relay

Step 1 – Teacher calls out rhythm.

Step 2 – Students in position #1 select rhythm and runs to position #2.

Step 3 – Students in position #2 select the note’s rhythmic value and run to the finish line.

Teacher calls out “Half Note.”

Suzie selects the half note, and runs to Julie.

Julie sees that it’s a half note. She selects “2 Beats”, and runs to the finish line.



EarMaster | Musical Ear Training Software

Guest Post:

Most of you know that ear training is essential to acquiring better musical skills. After all, our aural aptitudes are what guide our hands when we perform a piece. To get a better ear, we need regular practice in order to keep it in shape  – exactly like we would with our piano playing skills. With the technology available today, such practice has become easier and more accessible than ever. When searching for ear training software, you will find plenty of options. The EarMaster program seems quite popular, so I gave it a try.

EarMaster Pro 6 offers a little over 2000 lessons for ear training, sight-singing and rhythm practice, and caters for most skill levels. It contains a general-purpose course covering intervals, chords, chord inversions, harmonic progressions, scales, dictations, sing-back and clap-back activities, as well as sight-singing. You will also find a Jazz-oriented course which focuses on Jazz chords and swing rhythms. Exercises are answered in various ways: by using an on-screen piano keyboard, by singing and clapping into a microphone, by writing notes onto a notation staff, or even by playing on a MIDI keyboard.

The exercises follow a step-by-step progression that guides the user through sequences of lessons grouped by theme. Every exercise is also customizable, which gives us the opportunity to practice specific areas outside of the main courses. We noticed that the software analyzed the answers we gave in real-time and adapted the content of the lessons and the number of questions to our performance, which is quite useful.

The included sight-singing and sing-back exercises are setting EarMaster apart from other titles dedicated to ear training. These exercises are for both melodic and rhythmic training, and allow you to play along a score or to sing and clap short excerpts of music from memory. As with the other exercises included in the software, you are starting off at a low difficulty level, and then move on to more complex melodic and rhythmic phrases. The software also offers a Music XML import feature, which enables you to do sight-singing or melody sing-back sessions with a 4-part chorales or Jazz standards for examples. There are many websites from which you can download royalty-free Music XML material, so the possibilities are almost limitless.

According to the website of the developer, an iPad version of EarMaster should be on its way, but no release date other than “in 2015” seems to be available yet.

You will find a free 7-day trial version at

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Happy ear training!



Browse More Music Theory Posts:

Flash Frog™ | Music Flash Cards for Beginners
Pirate Quest | Music Terms Board Game (Digital Print)
Carnegie Hall Park (Matchbox Parking) | Music Theory Board Game

Music for Little Mozart’s | iPad App Review

Looking for an app to drill basic theory skills? Music for Little Mozart’s iPad app from Alfred Music is a great pick for beginning students.



The app provides drill and practice activities for:

  • Distinguishing between High and Low Sounds
  • Melodic Direction (Up or Down)
  • Rhythmic Identification (Simple Rhythms)
  • Notes Naming Skill Development

Other notable features for this app include a point system rewards students for correct answers, and cute watercolor animals that are sure to be a hit with kids. It would be nice to see app developed that meet the growing needs of students as they progress through the Alfred series piano books.

Download iPad App

Music for Little Mozart’s App


Browse Piano Sheet Music and Music Theory Posts:

Flash Frog™ | Music Flash Cards for Beginners
Silent Night | Beginner Piano Sheet Music
10 Beginner Piano Pieces Kids Love to Play
Amazing Grace | Free Beginner and Easy Piano Sheet Music
Free Beginner Piano Duets Sheet Music
Free Sheet Music for Piano | Great Composers for Little Fingers

Treble Clef Kids | iPad App Review

Looking for a fun way to drill note names and keyboard key names? Treble Clef kids has been a go-to solution for my students, and may be just what the doctor ordered for you and your students.

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Music iPad App Review

While the graphics fall a bit short, the value of the drill and practice activities are worth the price of the app. The cheering and the funny sounds for wrong answers add an element of fun. It would also be nice to see a scoring system added to engage the kids a bit more.

Download iPad App

Treble Clef Kids | iPad App


The Ultimate Music Lesson Lab Resource Guide | Free Online Resources

Whether you set up a music lesson lab with computers, software, apps, headphones, keyboards, worksheets and a dedicated area, or just informally include “lab time” at the end of student lessons, this post may prove to be a useful guide to many of the best, and most popular free resources on the web. If you have another suggestion please share with everyone by adding a comment below.

Keyboard Key Identification
Drill keyboard key identification skill with the resources found at these links.

Keyboard Note Identification

Music Notation
Learn the basics of music notation with the following online resources.

The Staff, Clefs, and Ledger Lines | Online Lesson

Note Naming
Drill notes with the following collection of free printable worksheets and interactive online resources/games.

Name That Tune! Note Name Worksheet
Color-by-Note | Treble Clef Note Names Music Theory Worksheet Pack
CodeBreaker! Note Name Worksheets
Let’s Crossword! Note Name Worksheet
Eek! Shark! Note Name Arcade Game
Treble Clef Flash Cards
Bass Clef Flash Cards
Viola Clef Flash Cards
Treble Clef Concentration Game
Bass Clef Concentration Game
Viola Clef Concentration Game
Note Name Game
Mighty Music Man 1
Mighty Music Man 2
Space Invaders Note Names

Learn and drill musical intervals with this collection of worksheets and interactive online resources.

Ready, Set, Go! | Interval Worksheet
Intervals | Interactive Lesson

Drill rhythm identification skills with the following free printable worksheets and interactive online games.

It All Adds Up! | Rhythm Worksheets
Music Press Distress | Rhythm Arcade Game
Let’s Play Store | Printable Rhythm Game
Note Duration | Online Lesson
Rest Duration | Online Lesson
Dots and Ties | Online Lesson

Key Signatures
Learn and drill key signatures with the following online lessons/flashcards.

Key Signatures | Online Lesson
Virtual Flash Cards

Learn how to build chords with the following online music theory lessons.

Introduction to Chords | Online Lesson
Triad Inversion | Online Lesson
Seventh Chords | Online Lesson

Introduce your students to the great composers with the following printable worksheets and free coloring pages.

Great Composer Word Search Worksheets
Great Composer Multiplication-Connect-the-Dot Worksheets
Great Composer Coloring Pages
“Meet the Composer” Scavenger Hunt Worksheet
“Meet the Composer” Job Application

Introduce your students to the instruments of the orchestra with the following printable worksheets.

“Meet the Orchestra” Scavenger Hunt Worksheet | Woodwinds
“Meet the Orchestra” Scavenger Hunt Worksheet | Brass
“Meet the Orchestra” Scavenger Hunt Worksheet | Strings
“Meet the Orchestra” Scavenger Hunt Worksheet | Percussion

Try writing your own music with this interactive online composing resource.

Compose You Own Music | Online

Music Terms
Look up music terms with this musical dictionary. Illustrated Music Dictionary for Kids
Classics for Kids Music Dictionary

Online Music Lessons
Get tips on basic piano performance techniques, or how to play you favorite songs.



Spell-A-Keyboard Game | Music Theory for Kids Game

Joy at came up with this super cute idea for helping kids to learn the names of the keys on the keyboard.

She says, “I gave them each a set of cards with words containing only A-G, a silent keyboard, and three glass gems (pennies or buttons work too).  Then I instructed them to “spell” the words from each flashcard by covering the right keys with glass gems…”

You can also play the game at the piano, if you prefer.

Check out the whole post – Spell-A-Keyboard Game – at