Find the Starting Note Level 2

Find the Starting Note level 2

Do you remember when I posted a easier version of this worksheet back in June? It has been a very popular worksheet because students actually have to figure out how to place their hand so they can start a piece. [The easy version uses only fingers 1,2, 3 and does not contain accidentals.] Sometimes students get a little lazy in trying to work out music on their own and need some help in learning how to get started.

Teachers asked if I would make a more difficult version, so I am posting it today. Click on the link under the picture to print it. This version is a lot more challenging, but I’ve tried it with my students and it is very helpful. It is also a good diagnostic tool, so I like to have the student work on it at the lesson.  I made it short, because we all have limited lesson time.

Simple things like having them wiggle their starting finger and fly it around in the air before landing on the key is very helpful with students who never seem to bother with finger numbers. This is especially true of students with small learning disabilities.

It is important to not only write the finger numbers on the worksheet, but to find and play it in the correct position on the keyboard. I encourage students to try this on the little keyboard that is printed on their assignment sheet. In the past students who had perception difficulties dropped out of formal music study, but now we know a lot more about how to modify our teaching to reach all children.

There are two pages in this document, one for the right hand one for the left hand.


To identify and play several different starting positions containing accidentals on the keyboard.


Students who are familiar with and can identify notes on the grand staff containing accidentals. Students should be comfortable with chromatic signs.

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7 thoughts to “Find the Starting Notes (With Accidentals)

  • Anonymous

    Wow… your work is wonderful. Thanks a lot!

  • Valerie

    Thanks so much, Susan! Those are great ideas! I’m playing with just individuals. (I don’t currently offer group lessons, though I’d love to figure out how to work that in my schedule at some point). Your games are perfect in that they are short enough to squeeze into a 30 minute lesson, but pack a powerful pedagological punch!

    • susanparadis


      Thanks for taking the time to comment!

      I love that phrase “powerful pedagogical punch!” I hope you don’t have it trademarked! Can I use it when I give my next presentation? 🙂

      • Valerie

        Absolutely! 🙂

  • meganhughesmusic

    These starting position worksheets have hit the spot with a couple of my students. They are just enough to quickly go through. Thanks for the new one.

  • Valerie

    Thanks! I’ve been meaning to ask you, how do you organize your materials? I’ve been putting your printables in file folders, but the flashcard compononets always fall out. BTW, I played about 15 games of “hearts and clubs” and “steal a heart” over the last couple of days and my students loved them! I also loved the chance to get off the bench and sit at the floor with my students 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful ideas!!

    • susanparadis

      Thank you so much for the feedback! Are you playing with a group or just one student?

      For activities that have an entire page, I put them in pocket folders, the ones without brads. I buy my pocket folders at WalMart or some other store in August when they put them on sale. I keep the pocket folders in very inexpensive magazine holders that I bought at Ikea. Sometimes after school starts, WalMart will put the left over pocket folders for about $.10 each, so I always check it out. I put the cut up cards that go with the game boards in the pockets of the folder, with either rubber bands or in a zip lock bag and store them folder in the magazine holder.

      If the cards do not have a game board, I put them in zip lock bags and store them in a narrow box that I also got at Ikea. I will often separate them by levels with rubber bands in the same bag. I try to make an insert out of card stock for the bags that I keep in the box. I put the name of the game, a small picture, and sometimes the directions. The card stock help the bags sit up in the box better so I can find them easier. But I get behind making the inserts. I’ve thought over the years that I could post the inserts for everyone to use, but now I have so many that it would take forever!

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