How to Letter a Piano Keyboard

Written by sarah schreiber
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How to Letter a Piano Keyboard
The piano keys are easier to learn with some note labels. (piano image by jerome DELAHAYE from

Beginning musicians learning to play the piano may find it helpful to label some of the notes with their corresponding letter names. This can serve as a valuable learning tool and is an easy task to accomplish with the proper tools.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Small, round labels
  • Masking tape

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  1. 1

    Write the letters A, B, C, D, E, F and G on individual small, round labels. As an alternative, write them on pieces of masking tape or use small letter stickers.

  2. 2

    Find the note middle "C" on the piano. This will serve as the starting point for your labelling. To find middle "C," locate the set of two black notes that is closest to the centre of the keyboard. "C" is the first white key to the left of the pair.

  3. 3

    Place the label onto the "C" key and continue labelling up the keyboard. Going left to right from C, the notes go D,E,F,G,A,B and repeat the cycle starting again at C.

  4. 4

    Repeat the process of writing the letters and labelling the keys for the number of notes you wish to label on the keyboard.

Tips and warnings

  • The musical alphabet only contains the letters A through G and repeats itself every seven keys on the white keys only. The black keys are known as accidentals or flats/sharps. You can choose to label the black keys as well, but because they are narrower, it may be harder to affix a label. Labelling the white keys makes it possible to easily identify the black ones. For example, if you are looking for the note A sharp, find the A and look at the top, right black note. To find A flat, look to the top, left black note. This method is the same for each black note.
  • It may be helpful to locate a copy of a labelled piano keyboard before attaching the stickers. Many beginner piano books contain this information and it's also available online.

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