Gameify Piano Scales with Scale Level Charts for Piano Students

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.

Piano scale level charts

Keeping track of piano scales

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.

Scale Level Charts-previewThis 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.

30 thoughts on “Gameify Piano Scales with Scale Level Charts for Piano Students”

  1. Hi

    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.

  2. 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!

  3. 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?)

  4. 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. 😉

  5. 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. 🙂

  6. 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?

  7. Are these charts still available? I would like to do this contest in my studio this year. I love your videos and blogs!

  8. I love this idea! Thank you Nicola . About minor scales, are just the harmonic minor scales included in the resource, or are you teaching the natural minor and melodic minor scales as well? Thanks so much!

    • Melissa, the challenge booklet says to choose which of the minor scales you’d like your students to focus on. I personally only teach the harmonic minor scales since they’re the most common. (If I have students who think they’ll pursue music at the collegiate level, I will teach all 3.)

  9. Good evening! I love these so much and they are perfect for what I need. However, I’ve signed up to “subscribe” 2 different times and did not receive an email either time. I’ve checked my spam folder as well. Thanks so much!


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