One of my new year’s resolutions for my teaching was to get more consistent about scales. All my students practice scales (whether they’re in the exam system or not) but I wanted a way to keep track of all their progress. Scale level charts seemed the perfect way to track this in my students’ folders.
This new system had to be quick and easy to use. It also needed to have clear guidelines, so I would know exactly where each student was in their technical work. Plus I wanted to leave room to review each scale several times for better retention.
Scale Level Charts
Thus these scale level charts were born! There are 7 levels, each one with a circle of fifths to track progress, and accompanying blank keyboard worksheets for students to fill in finger numbers on the keys.
This how I divided up the scale levels:
- Pentascale Level 1: Pentascale Star
- Major pentascales in every key
- Pentascale Level 2: Pentascale Hero
- Minor pentascales in every key
- Scale Level 1: Scale Apprentice
- One octave major scales in every key
- Scale Level 2: Scale Scholar
- One octave minor scales in every key
- Scale Level 3: Scale Ninja
- Two octave major scales in every key
- Scale Level 4: Scale Superstar
- Two octave minor scales in every key
- Scale Level 5: Scale Master
- Three octave major and minor scales with staff worksheets.
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I have three circles under each key signature. The scale is passed once it gets a tick (or a sticker for the younger students) for the scale at three different lessons. This makes sure its really gone in, and not just crammed directly before their lesson time!
How do you approach scales in your studio?
Do you have a system like this? Or are you more random in your approach?
Do you wish you had a levelled system for intervallic reading?
Interval Wizard cards split reading by intervals into 8 different levels. Piano students always want to practice these cards so they can level up – and by the time they reach level 8 they’ll be interval pros! Check out the Interval Wizard cards and see if they might be a good fit for your studio.
26 thoughts on “Gameify Piano Scales with Scale Level Charts for Piano Students”
I really like your scales level charts. It seems the 2 octave charts are not available to print?
Thanks for the idea of a way in which to learn scales in an orderly fashion.
Sorry about that Amy, there was an error in the link. It’s fixed now if you want to download 🙂
Thank you so much! I’ve been looking for a tool like this.
You’re welcome Alaina! Glad you like them!
This is a great resource. It will make teaching the scales so much easier and will keep us all organized and on task. Thanks so much!
Happy to help Jean! Also, tricking students into becoming familiar with the Circle of Fifths, without noticing! 😉
I remember sketching out a very crude version of these diagrams when preparing for a music test in highschool… If only I had your beautiful little infographic to study back then! I know your students are going to love this, and thank you years down the road when their scales get a little bit rusty and need something to get them back in the swing of things! (Swing music… eh? get it?)
These are great.
thank you ever so much.
Thankyou for these, I started introducing some levels this year, so nice to find someone has already done it.
You’re welcome Stephanie! They’ve been a hit in my studio so far!
I want to start a scale contest and these will be perfect to help the kids. Thank you!
Cool, let me know how the contest works out Pamela!
I love the Circle of 5th tracking idea! What a great way to prep for key signature understanding.
Thanks Heidi, so happy you like the charts. The more chances to learn the COF by osmosis the better I say! 😉
Nicola, I absolutely adore your scale level “chart” system. Have you ever considered incorporating primary chord pages along with the scales and arpeggios? (After the pentascale levels, of course.) It would be an awesome addition, if it was do-able.
I actually have separate level charts for this Sarah, just how I chose to go about it. Although I’m always thinking whether I should have grouped them together instead…6 of one though I think. 😉
I should have known you would be the one to come up with such an awesome resource! Exactly what I needed! Thank you!
Aw, thanks Laura! Have fun!
When I subscribe for these worksheets, for some reason I get sent the transfer student cheat sheet form instead. Maybe it got inproperly linked?
Started incorporating some of your systems into my studio this year, students are all excited to partake in many of the challenges! Thanks for the hard work and sharing your ideas, and making your systems accessible. You provide a great service, Nicola. 🙂
Fixing this now Darrin, you can fill in the form again and it should work for you. 🙂
Hi, thanks for these. Just wondered what the three little circles are for?
Three “tests” at the lesson for each scale.
Hi Nicola, I just love all the ideas and amazing resources you provide! I’m finding so many cool things to add to my studio and make me a better teacher.
When you say minor scales in this article, are you using only natural minor? When do you introduce harmonic and melodic?
Answered my question when I printed them off. Thank so much!
Are these charts still available? I would like to do this contest in my studio this year. I love your videos and blogs!
There’s a box in the post above to enter your details so we can send you the charts.