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Reading Music
A rest is used to show where there should be silence between notes.

Reading Music

This KS2 Music quiz takes a look at reading music. Reading music is knowing the symbols used in written music.

People have been singing and making music for much longer than they have been writing music down. Many musicians learn to play instruments without ever learning to read music. Having a special way to write music down on paper helped musicians to share new songs and was the only way to preserve music before sound recording equipment was invented.

Playing a tune without reading music is called 'playing by ear'. If you know how the tune goes, such as the song Happy Birthday To You, then you may be able to play it by recognising the next note - why not give it a go?!

See what you have learned about reading music by trying this quiz.

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1.
Which of the following is NOT the name of a musical note?
B flat
C sharp
E
H sharp
Names for musical notes are A, B, C, D, E, F, G. After G comes A again! All of these notes can be sharp, flat or natural
2.
Music for instruments with higher pitches, such as flutes and violins, is usually written on a stave with a treble clef. Which clef is used for instruments with lower pitches, such as a cello?
Bass
Tenor
Soprano
Lower
Piano music is written on two staves, usually one for the treble clef and one for the bass clef - this is called a Grand Stave
3.
Which note is found on the first (bottom) line of the bass clef stave?
B
D
E
G
From bottom to top, the lines on the bass clef stave represent these notes: G, B, D, F, A
4.
A crotchet has the value of a single beat. Which of the following has the value of two beats?
A minim
A quaver
A semibreve
A semiquaver
Minim is a Latin word
5.
What note is found on the third (middle) line of the treble clef stave?
B
D
E
F
From bottom to top, the lines on the treble clef stave represent these notes: E, G, B, D, F
6.
Which sign is used for a half-beat?
A minim
A quaver
A semibreve
A semiquaver
A semiquaver is half a quaver, rather like a semicircle is half a circle
7.
What notation is used to show where there should be silence between notes?
The dynamic for pianissimo
A rest
A bar line
A key signature
Even music includes silence sometimes!
8.
In music, what does 'notation' mean?
Written notes from the conductor to the musicians
Written symbols which represent sounds
The written lyrics of a song
Notes on how to improve a piece of music
Music cannot be written in the same way as a poem or story - people have invented a large number of symbols to represent the different sounds possible in music. Understanding these symbols is what we mean by 'reading' music
9.
What would tell you that you needed to play a section of music again?
A semibreve
A rest
A bar line
A repeat sign
As long as you know what a repeat sign looks like, you'll know to 'repeat' the music
10.
The dynamic which tells a musician to play gradually quieter is ____.
andante
adagio
decrescendo
crescendo
The first two letters 'de' might have given you a clue here

 

Author:  Sheri Smith

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