Piano Keyboard Diagrams
to Print Out
Piano keyboard diagrams to print out - download these FREE piano key notes charts, blank, or with piano letters note names for your beginner music students!
Let students write on these
Let them fill in the blank piano learning guides themselves, week by week, perhaps using the new lettered piano keys layout as a reference if necessary.
This printable piano keyboard shows the piano keys with the note names on them, white keys and black keys too!
Scroll down the page to find the free downloadable PDF links...
Please scroll down the page for the download links.
Spreading it out over many weeks
I have found that putting the piano keyboard sheet on students' lesson assignments every week ensures a gradual firm grasp of key names.
Save ink by laminating
If you choose to print out this particular piano learning guide for your students (or yourself), I suggest laminating it, or using wide tape to cover the important parts of the page! INK IS SO EXPENSIVE, and we music teachers seem to need a lot of it.
You might also find it useful to laminate one of the online piano keyboards below, and allow your students to write on the keyboard with an erasable felt pen, to use the keyboard over and over. (As long as "ghost images" don't remain behind!)
One new key at a time
I used to assign kids the entire paper to fill in the first week, but gradually I've come to assign just one note name per week, and stipulate that at home, they are to strike every one of THOSE keys up and down the keyboard every day.
"This week, I want you to write in all the D's, in pencil, and play every D, etc.", so that we keep returning to the paper piano keyboard layout week after week.
It's a BIG DEAL when we've gotten through all the white keys, and turn our attention to those mysterious black keys, with the double names...
Here is a student who has placed a little animal on each G# key.
Below are two very different piano keyboards diagrams: the first one has small keys (uses less ink!), the second one is larger, with fewer keys.
Both print out nicely on 8 1/2" by 11" paper, with PLENTY of white space left below for you to write on! Scroll down for the free downloadable PDF links...
My favorite keyboard, & the easiest to use
Please scroll down the page for the download links.
Possible printing issues
Printing in "landscape mode", or horizontally, is always an opportunity for me to WASTE PAPER AND INK. I may forget to change my printer settings, and end up with an unusable sheet. Even if I DO change settings, such as to "fit to the page", I might still be clipping off the keyboard on either side.
My newest printer, a very basic Canon model, doesn't have a lot of finesse with sizing, and I have found that I only get a good print copy now by going to my own book, Songs Old & Songs New, and using the keyboards found there. My graphic designer cleaned up the keyboards a bit, and they print beautifully!
Guitar players also need to understand the piano keyboard
I use "blank" paper keyboards with all my beginner piano, violin, voice and guitar students.
Yes, guitar! I write the names on the appropriate piano keys for the guitar strings - E, A, D, G, B, E - and that is how they learn to tune their instrument. It is much more meaningful than using an electronic tuner.
I feel the electronic tuner should come LATER, after they understand how the piano keyboard relates to the strings and frets of the guitar.
The "Rosetta Stone" for musicians
The piano keyboard is the Rosetta Stone for all musical instruments!
My students get to know the key names this way: the 3 black keys are "Grandma's house," and the 2 black keys are "the dog's house."
G = Grandma (who is the first person you meet inside GRANDMA'S house)
A = Ants that are hiding in Grandma's house - or it could be "A" for "Auntie".
B = Grandma's BACK door
C = the Cat
D = the Dog (which is inside the DOG house)
E = the Eagle, or the Elephant
F = Grandma's FRONT Door
For the first few months of their lessons, they must fill in the piano keyboard paper one key-name per week. The first week they write in all the D's, and the piano players practice a hand exercise to go with it.
An opportunity to practice a flexible wrist
This exercise, known as "Dipping Donuts," requires shaping the 1 and 3 fingers into a round hole like a donut, then pretending to "dip" it into an imaginary glass of milk, using a smooth wrist action. (This exercise comes from one of the cute FJH Piano Adventures books.)
So, all week long at home, they start their piano practice time by "dipping donuts" on all the D's.
First one hand, then the other, strikes each D on the piano, from left to right, then back down again right to left (or the other way around -- some free spirit always wants to do it backwards, and it really doesn't matter!
Make a technical exercise out of it, for fun
This reinforces not just the piano key's location and name, but also a flexible wrist motion. (As I mentioned above, this idea comes from FJH's My First Piano Adventure, Lesson Book A Pre-Reading, which is full of cute and effective ideas for beginners.)
They will remember "dipping donuts"
I frequently have to remind them not to stiff-handedly "splash" the donut into the milk, but gracefully bend the wrist. Over a period of weeks (and months of follow-up), it starts to become natural!
This final keyboard, below, is very sharp-looking, but I don't use it much because I try to avoid print jobs that demand lots of heavy black ink! Your own purposes may have a special use for this graphic, though:
Please scroll down the page for the download links.
Keyboard recognition is important for all musicians
It's obvious why piano players need to start learning the names of the keys, but why guitarists and other instrumentalists, and vocalists?
The easiest way to explain and SEE a "half step"
Those musicians also need to understand the topography of the piano keyboard, on which there seem to be black notes "missing" between the frets B and C, and E and F.
How else will they truly understand the concept of half steps and whole steps?
When I give blank piano keys sheets to guitar beginners, the first thing we do is learn where the guitar strings are located on the piano.
We highlight those keys on the keyboard sheet, and use them as a reference for learning how to tune their guitar to a piano.
Tuning to the piano keys makes more sense
For guitar players, I have found this to be MUCH MORE EFFECTIVE than merely tuning with an electronic device. The UNDERSTANDING is there.
First the open strings, then the frets...
Next, we learn all the names of the other keys.
Then, we use this online piano keyboard sheet as a reference for saying note names as they play scales fret-by-fret from string to string. ("Open E, F, F#, G, G#...Open A, A#, etc.")
I suggest you print out just one at first to see how you like the size.
The black keys always require a lot of ink, and so these paper keyboards are precious commodities once they are printed out! I don't pass out new ones.
If a student rips the holes so the keyboard sheet doesn't stay in their 3-ring binder, then I mend the edge with wide tape folded over, and punch new holes!
A plain paper blank piano keyboard sheet is one of the best all-around tools a music teacher has!
Here are the links to the PDFs!
First, the keyboard with names on all white and black keys:
Download paper piano keys layout with key names on the keys
The keyboard that uses the least ink and has four of each key:
Download 4 octaves of blank piano keyboard with small keys, above (my personal favorite!)
The largest keys with three octaves:
Download printable piano keyboard with 3 octaves and large keys
THESE EXERCISES ARE ALSO FOUND IN THE BOOK "SONGS OLD & SONGS NEW"
Music for Music Teachers has other great free resources for teachers! Take a look:
12 Major Scales and Chords for Piano
12 Minor Scales and Chords for Piano
Basic Piano Chords & Scales - with lettered notes for beginners
Best Piano Books! In my opinion & experience
Flashcards for Piano
Giant Flashcards for Games
Louie Louie I, IV, V Chords - a fun way to cement the relationships of the 3 main chords in students' minds and fingers, too!
Note-Naming Worksheets - music with note names to help
Note-Reading Worksheets - charts with the notes placed on single staffs & the grand staff, with & without letters in the notes!
Piano Chord Chart for Major and Minor Chords
Piano Keyboard Diagrams - pdfs to print out
Piano Scales for New Beginners, with letters in the notes
Staff Paper pdfs - many kinds & clefs
Interested in songs from the Bible for your students or church? Check out my other website, SingTheBibleStory.com!
Songs Old & Songs New
All the first-year material I give my beginner students.
Piano keyboard sheets, scales, chords, note-reading exercises, and over 256 pages of music!
Queen Esther in the Bible
This beautiful song book for piano & voice "Esther, For Such a Time as This", available as a digital download, tells the riveting story of the time when Jews in ancient Persia faced a foe named Haman, and how a brave young queen risked her life to save her people.
A good choice for a singing story-teller, an operatic group, a short theater production, or a class of children!
This book is also available from Amazon as a paperback.
Just the Black Keys
This book is available as a digital download from this site. Visit this page to see some free examples from the book.
It is also available from Amazon as a paperback!
This is the perfect easy start for little pianists.
And when they start reading white-key notes on the staff, this is a fun easy resource to say each week, "Choose a new black-key song at home this week and figure it out to show me next lesson!" They will be spending more time at the piano.
The Adventures of Tonsta
A perfect read aloud storybook
for little boys or girls.
The Adventures of Tonsta highlight the travels of a very young boy with a good heart, who goes about helping folk in trouble.
With a red cap on his head and a sack of tools slung over his shoulder, Tonsta seems to meet people in distress wherever he goes.
Lots of trolls in this book - including one who gives him a Christmas gift!
Available at Amazon
This is an absolutely wonderful site!
As a voice and piano teacher looking for enrichment material for beginners, I have found your collections to be comprehensive and purposeful. It is clear that you are a wonderful musician and educator. Thank you!
I bought your Halloween Songs, wrote teacher accompaniment for some, and performed with 17 of my students in costume at an assisted living facility.
It was a "win-win" situation. The kids and residents loved it and the parents were very pleased with the service aspect of their children's performance as well.
Thank you for sharing these lovely pieces that introduce the minor key in a very simple and interesting way to early elementary students.
I recently purchased your arrangement of The Moldau (a longtime favorite of mine).
I wasn't sure if any of my students would be interested in it, but to my amazement 3 of my students LOVE it. Thank you so much for making your great arrangement.
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Please note that all comments are moderated, and will not appear until I have approved them. Also, IF YOU ARE ASKING FOR MUSIC THAT IS NOT IN THE PUBLIC DOMAIN, YOUR REQUEST WILL BE IGNORED. That's pretty much any music written in the last 75 years...
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Suzie Neustadter Vocal Studio Not rated yet
Thank you for all of this helpful info!! I teach beginning piano to my voice students and this info was exactly what I needed!! Perfect! Best site I've …
How Can I Understand Piano? Not rated yet
I had a desire to play the piano. How do I know the chords and match it in playing. Please be a help to me I am a Liberian in Liberia. Dana: …
Real Size Keyboard Not rated yet
In the attached file I am providing the real dimensions of a piano keyboard. It's captured from Synthesia. If you need high resolution and lossless image …
Basic Foundation Not rated yet
I also agree but it is not only intended for students 6-13 years old. It is also the basic foundation of Music. If you can memorize thoroughly these keys …
Age level? Not rated yet
What age are these "lessons" intended for? Because it only took me a week to memorize the keys. Reply from Dana I agree that most students …
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About the Author
Hi, I'm Dana! (Say that like "Anna".) I'm the owner of Music-for-Music-Teachers.com, and a newer site, SingTheBibleStory.com.
Like some of you, I've been playing the piano since early childhood, and have added a few other instruments along the way, plus an interest in arranging and composing music.
You can find out more about me and the reason for this website at my About Me page.
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.
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Labeling the piano keys can be super helpful for beginner adults or young children. When you find you’re at a level where you start to get comfortable finding the keys, however- remove them! See below for the best removable piano key labels for beginners.
COLOR PIANO STICKERS
COLOR STICKERS WITH MATCHING BOOK
CROSBY MONSTER STICKERS
BLACK AND WHITE STICKER SET
NOTE CHART FOR BEHIND KEYS
If you’re stuck (lol) applying any of these- send me a message and I’ll help you.
If you’re looking for a good beginner piano book for your child, see our post here on teaching the young child and the best books.
Have you considered a keyboard that lights up the keys to begin learning? Click here for our full post if you’re looking for a piano that lights up the keys and teaches you to play.
Piano That Lights Up Keys | Keyboard That Teaches You To Play!
How To Teach Piano To A 5 Year Old & The Best Beginner Piano Books
Treble and Bass Staff Labels to write notes on the staff
Five Finger Keyboard Labels
Octave Keyboard Labels
The other day I was drawing a tiny keyboard on my younger student’s assignment book and I had her draw dots on the correct keys. As we worked together looking for whole and half steps, I casually said that my drawing was kind of sloppy, and it would be a lot easier to read and more fun if I had some keyboard stickers. So I sat down at my computer and designed some! Actually they were easy to make because I’ve been designing my own labels for years and I drew the keyboard about 10 years ago. You probably recognize it from my pre-reading solos and my picture scales! However, I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything quite like this, so for your whole and half step pleasure, I’m offering Keyboard Labels. Please let me know what you think!
Now all I have to do is peel one off and stick it in my student’s assignment book. This will give students a handy reference, plus it will encourage them to look in their assignment book.
I used Avery White Address labels, product number 8160. These are “easy peel” and believe me, it’s worth the little extra you pay to be able to peel them off and reuse on a new assignment page. I printed my labels directly from the PDF I’m posting here and my graphic fit the labels perfectly, so I hope you have the same luck. In case you can’t find this particular Avery product, the label size is 1″ x 2 5/8″ and there are 30 labels on each page. Before you print on your label sheet, try printing on a regular sheet of paper and hold it up to light to see if it aligns with your particular labels. Be sure your printer setting is on “actual size” and not “fit” or “scale.”
Printable piano pdf labels key
Printable Piano Keyboard Diagram
In this lesson, you can print piano keyboard diagram templates for free and learn all the note names quickly and easily on the piano keys.
This is a useful tool when you are starting out to learn to play the piano, so you will not get lost among all the piano keys!
But keep on reading, and by the end of this lesson, you may no longer need it! :)
FTC Disclosure: If you make a purchase via a link on this site, I may receive a small commission on the transaction - at no added cost to you. Learn more.
How Many Keys Are There on a Piano?
Did you know that:
- Piano keyboards exist in many different sizes and with different numbers of keys.
- A full-sized regular piano keyboard has 88 keys.
- Other electronic piano keyboards can have almost any number of keys.
- When buying a piano or keyboard, it is good to remember that many piano pieces are not playable on keyboards with fewer than 88 keys...!
So, How Many Different Notes Are There?
In the music of the western tradition, there are 12 different notes:
- 7 are the Basic Notes, labeled after the first 7 letters in the alphabet; A, B, C, D, E, F, G. These are also the white keys.
- 5 are Altered Notes, a semitone/half step higher or lower from the basic notes. These are the black keys on a piano.
On the piano keyboard layout, this can be observed in the pattern of the white and black keys.
So, the piano keyboard actually has only 12 different keys; 7 white keys and 5 black keys. The rest of the keys are just repeated with either higher or lower pitch.
Piano Key Notes
Here is another piano keyboard diagram with the note names of the white keys or the basic notes:
You can see that the 7 basic notes (A B C D E F G) are repeated over and over. But each time they repeat, the music pitch (how high or low the tone is) sounds one octave higher (if you play to the right on the keyboard).
An octave is the distance, or music interval, from one note or tone to the next with the same name, higher or lower.
You can also see that all keys have a black key between them except between E - F and B - C.
All steps (the interval from one key to the next) having a black key between them are called whole steps or tones. Those that don’t, E-F and B-C, are smaller and called semitones or half steps.
There are also half steps/semitones between a black and the white key next to it or reversed. And there are whole steps from one black key to the next with a white key between.
Black Key Patterns
See how the black keys are grouped in two’s and three’s, all over the keyboard? This repeated pattern also makes it easier to find our way on the piano.
Look at this piano keyboard diagram where the black key groups are circled:
The black keys make it possible to play many more scales and melodies. They fill in the “gap” where there are whole steps, so to speak!
By playing all the keys one by one, both the white and the black keys next to each other, you can play a chromatic scale.
A chromatic scale is made from only half steps or semitones.
Naming the Black Keys - Accidentals
The black keys are named after the white right next to them. They are alterations of the white keys.
The black keys have two names. The name depends on what white key it started from, the one above or the one below.
So how do you alter a white key?
Easy, just use one of two music symbols; the sharp (♯) or the flat (♭). These symbols, together with the natural sign (♮), are called accidentals. (Nope- no accident!).
You will see accidentals written in the sheet music right before a note.
By the way: If you just mention a black key without reading any sheet music, it is OK to use any of the two names.
Let’s say you read the note C. If there is a sharp sign (♯) in front of C, you get to play the black key a half step higher (to the right) - Yay!
In the same way, you can use the flat sign (♭) to lower a note.
Starting from D this time, and imagine having a flat sign in front of that D, you will then instead play the black key a half step lower (to the left):
-Whoa, stop there! D♭ is the same key as C♯???
Yes, it is! The keys can have two names, depending on the accidentals. If they end up on the same key like this, they are called enharmonic (“one sounded”).
You can use a sharp or flat sign on any note. So even an E can have a sharp sign… and where does it go? To F!
Since there is only a half step between E and F - and a sharp sign raises the note a half step - there is only F to go to. So E♯ and F are also enharmonic.
PS. If you read all this- perhaps you no longer need the piano keyboard diagram! :)
Piano Keyboard Diagram to Print
1. Blank Piano Keyboard Diagram
Here is a free printable blank piano keyboard diagram(click to open a printable PDF in a new window):
2. Piano Key Chart with Note Names
Here is another piano keyboard diagram with all the note names(click to open a printable PDF in a new window):
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