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Learning music and memorising music notes and names can be a struggle for young beginners. With 10 years of experience guiding other aspiring musicians, I discovered and developed an easy system to help students learn note recognition in a few simple to follow steps. 

Step 1: Learn & memorise alphabet from A-G (front and back)

Learn and sing the alphabet song. This can be a fun activity with your child and is a layered learning process for pre-schoolers. Please refer to the video demonstration.

Step 2: Pick your favourite tune and sing along with its note name

Choose the tune of your favourite song and replace the lyrics with its corresponding note names. For example, the notes for “Do you wanna build a snowman?” from Do you want to build a snowman – Movie ‘Frozen’ are C-C-C-G-C-E-D-E.

Based on the latest neuroscience on improving memory, it’s best to connect it to a song that you know. It is easier to learn the note names and associate them with their pitch by replacing the lyrics with its corresponding note name. This creates a bridge between two pieces of information.

Step 3: Make music note flashcards

Repeatedly recalling information using visual aids helps strengthen those connections in your memory. Using flashcards will help your child retain information more effectively than simply relying on their ears alone. Choose a letter between A-G and allow your child to draw that note in their music book and then play that note back. You can also play a pop-up quiz game, naming the notes drawn on the flashcards.

Step 4: Repetition makes perfect

We make new neural connections and form new brain cells through constant repetition. The key for learning any instrument is building habits though daily practice and developing cognitive ability to support layered learning in music. For example, if you are learning to walk, you need to learn how to crawl before you can stand. Even then, you fall multiple times until you are able to take your first steps. This is a progressive, day by day process of constant attempts and repetition. Repeat and practice what you have learned and you will master it before you know it.

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