If you have an iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch, there are variety of educational music apps that can help reinforce what is being taught during piano lessons! Below is a list of our favorites. If you don’t have an Apple device but have a tablet powered by an Android operating system (such as a tablet, smartphone, or Kindle), there are still some music apps that you can enjoy as well. Those apps are indicated by an asterisk (*).


Our FAVORITE Apps

      • Piano Maestro (FREE): Piano Maestro is an in depth educational tool for students beginning to study piano. Piano Maestro helps students practice and learn their sight reading, rhythm, technique, playing with both hands, and much more. The best thing about it? Students can practice their method book assignments RIGHT IN THE APP! This app is a must have to help make piano practice fun.
      • The Most Addicting Sheep Game ($0.99): This app might not sound like an educational music game, but it is! In order to make the sheep jump at the appropriate times in the game, the player must tap on the beat. The background music is great and this game promotes having the student listen carefully and keep an internal beat. And it is super fun!

All-In-One Apps

      • *Music for Little Mozarts ($0.99 for both Apple devicesAndroid devices): Perfect for preschool or kindergarten aged beginners. The app uses the characters of Mozart Mouse and Beethoven Bear to learn about high versus low sounds, loud versus soft sounds, names of the piano keys, notes of the staffs, simple rhythms, etc.
      • SproutBeat (FREE for 25 Worksheets; $19.99 for the full version with access to 400+ worksheets): SproutBeat is the companion app for Eik Siang Mar’s amazing website, FunAndLearnMusic.com, which offers a huge variety of free music worksheets that are both visually attractive and educationally effective. Using this app, you can easily access the worksheets from FunAndLearnMusic.com from your iPad to either (1) print the worksheets from your iPad to your wireless printer, or (2) have your child complete the worksheet digitally using the pen and highlighter tool within the app.

Rhythm

      • *Rhythm Cat (the Lite version is FREE for both Apple devicesAndroid devices; the Pro version is $4.99 for Apple devices [in HD] & $0.99 for Android devices [not in HD]): This app features various levels where students have to tap out the rhythm shown on the screen. The graphics are great (with cartoon cats in the background) and the app features great rhythm tracks for the student to tap the rhythms along with.
      • Rhythm Lab ($2.99) — *iPad only*: This rhythm app is simple yet highly customizable. The app presents students with rhythm exercises at various levels, and the student must correctly tap the rhythm.
      • Beat Sneak Bandit ($2.99): This app may seem more fun than educational, but it is actually very beneficial for students — there is no such thing as too much reinforcement for being able to feel the beat! In this game, the player is trying to help the Beat Sneak Bandit steal back all the clocks of the world from the villain Duke Clockface. In order for Beat Sneak Bandit to move in each puzzle level, the player must tap to the beat.  This clever rhythm/puzzle game is challenging, so it is probably best for students age 8+.

Note Identification

      • *Flashnote Derby ($2.99 for both Apple devices & Android devices): Another note-naming app, but it is more of a game! By naming notes correctly, your horse might win the race.
      • Music Flash Class ($3.99)Just like flashcards, but it’s electronic and more fun! The app lets you choose the range of notes you want to practice, so this app is perfect for both beginners and elementary/intermediate students.
      • *NoteWorks (FREE version available for both Apple devices & Android devices; full version is $4.99 for both Apple devices & Android devices): Another app for practicing note names, but it feels more like a game than a flashcard drill! This one allows you to save your progress under your own name, earn points, and advance to different levels.

Ear Training

      • *Blob Chorus (FREE for Apple devices; $3.19 for Android devices): This ear training app is fun and silly, but really works! Each of the blobs in the chorus sing a note, and then the king blob sings his note. The aim of the game is for the student to identify the blob that sang the same note as the king blob.

Sight-Reading

      • Piano Dust Buster 2 (FREE; additional songs cost extra): Created by the makers of Piano Maestro (listed above), this app has completely free access with a full subscription to Piano Maestro. There are two games within this app: “Germ Attack” and “Staff Master.” “Germ Attack” is similar to Guitar Hero on the Wii. The notes scroll downwards on the screen towards the keyboard, and the player must press the right piano key at the right time. “Staff Master” is a little more challenging because the “germ” notes appear on the staff. The educational value of these games are in the ear training that players will receive by learning to play tunes by ear. Players will also become familiar with a variety of old folk songs and classical themes.

Composition

      • GarageBand ($4.99): Interested in composing your own music? GarageBand can help! GarageBand turns your iPad, iPhone, or iPod Touch into a collection of Touch Instruments and a full-featured recording studio — so you can make music anywhere you go.

Music Utilities

      • iReal b ($12.99 for both Apple devices & Android devices): This app is for somewhat advanced students who know their major and minor chords and are interested in learning to play pop music. The app allows you to download free chord charts from the iReal b Forums and save them into your library. Once you pull up a chord chart, you can transpose it to any key, choose any tempo, and play along with a chosen background track (with percussion, bass, guitar, etc.).
      • Steinway Metronome (FREE): There are lots of metronome apps out there, but this one is my favorite. It looks nice and is easy to use.
      • Petronome (FREE; $0.99 for additional “pets”): Petronome is just what it sounds like: A pet plus a metronome. It is a fun app to use for rhythm activities with preschoolers or any young beginner student.
      • SpeakBeat Metronome ($0.99): SpeakBeat is a metronome app, but with a twist. It “speaks” the beats! Just choose the time signature and choose whether you’d like sub beats counted (the “and’s,” “one-and-a’s,” and the “one-e-and-a’s”) or not. This metronome alternative can help students become more aware of meter when they play.
      • Tempo SlowMo (FREE): This app allows you to choose any music track currently on your iDevice and slow or speed up the tempo, without adversely affecting the pitch of the audio. In-app purchases allow you to remove ads or add extra features.
      • SpeedTube (FREE): SpeedTube allows you to choose any video on YouTube and play it under tempo, without adversely affecting the pitch of the audio. This could be useful for learning new licks to play from YouTube tutorials.