When it’s time to teach minor chords to your piano students, the best strategy in my opinion is to emphasise the visual patterns. If we build this instant recognition first – we can tackle the notation side of things later.
There are two main ways I’ve been emphasising these patterns, which I shared recently when covering the major triad patterns:
- Using my black and white alphabet blocks to build the chords with my students.
- Review these using the black and white pattern sheets which you can download below.
How to Teach Minor Chords with the Pattern Sheets
A few teachers have asked how specifically I use these sheets.
- I start with the patterned sheet as an aid for my students, and point to each chord at random for them to play.
- Once they are comfortable with this (usually 2-3 weeks) we move to the plain sheet with the chords at random and repeat the exercise.
- Finally, I test their knowledge by starting a metronome and asking them to keep to four beats per chord. While they’re doing this I point to the next chord that they need to play so that they need to keep thinking ahead and preparing – much like good sight reading.
Download the Minor Chord Pattern Sheets
The first sheet in this set is designed to clearly show which triads have the same patterns of white and black keys. The two other sheets are in random order to help you test your students on their minor chord knowledge.
Subscribe to the newsletter and get the minor triad grids
Enter your details to subscribe to the newsletter for piano teachers with information, tips and offers.
I hate spam as much as you do! I will only send you emails related directly to piano teaching and you can unsubscribe at any time.
Minor Triads Flipped Learning Video
In these videos, I teach students about minor chords on the staff and the piano. Feel free to send these videos to parents for their kids to watch, use it in group lessons or as part of lab time.
These videos are designed to be clear and concise so that students can watch them – and then get on with some writing work for reinforcement. Saving you time to do fun activities during the lesson time.
More Flipped Thinking Theory
If you liked this music theory video, you might also like these others:
- Flipped Basic Note Values
- Flipped Beginning Solfa
- Flip and Gameify Landmark Notes
- Flipped Time Signatures
- Flipped Note & Rest Values
- Flipped Dynamics
- Flipped Accidentals, Tones & Semitones
- Flipped Articulation Marks
- Flipped C and G Major Scales
- Flipped Tempo Marks
- Flipped Ledger Line Landmark Notes
- Flipped Intermediate Note Values
- Flipped Note Stem Rules
- Flipped Solfa Scale Singing
- Flipped D & F Major Scales
- Flipped Note Grouping/Beaming
- Flipped Expression Marks
How do you teach minor chords?
Do you encourage students to see the visual patterns like this? Share your thoughts in the Vibrant Music Studio Teachers community on Facebook or in the comments below.