Tech Tuesday: Music Theory for Beginners App

Apps, Reviews, Tech Tuesdays

Today I am featuring one of my favorite theory apps! Music Theory for Beginners is compatible with the iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad. If you are familiar with and enjoy the software program, Music Ace, then you will love this app! This is the closest app that I have found to be close to Music Ace. Be sure to check out their promo video on YouTube!

This app has 22 lessons that cover all the major theory topics from reading notes to rhythm to basic harmony. Students click on multiple choice answers, tap out rhythms on a drum, answer questions on the on screen keyboard, and add and slide their answers onto the staff.

From the main screen, students can choose from Lesson or Quiz. The Quiz button will take them to more challenging timed quizzes. These are for students that already know the topic and needs a little more challenge. The lessons are first brief explanations to the concept they will be quizzed on. (The lesson quizzes are not timed and reviews what they learned in the lesson explanation) Once they read the lesson, they go onto the quiz. If they need a little extra reminder when they are on the quiz, they can click on the owl and the lesson will pop up to review. After completing the quiz, students earn an an achievement badge for each topic in turn. Once you’ve earned your badge you progress to the next lesson. This app contains over 2,000 questions of varying difficulty. If a student doesn’t do well on the quiz, they can click on retry and get a different set of questions and try that lesson topic quiz again.

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The main character in the app is an Owl who will “whoooo” and turn upside down when a question is answered correctly. After a while this may get annoying to some students, so they can just mute the volume depending on the topic of the quiz whether or not you need sound. I also found after trying this app myself and then having my students use it that occasionally the quiz instructions (following the lessons) were a little confusing. Once we would go ahead and answer, not knowing what it was asking, then we could figure out what it was really asking by the answer that was given. In these cases I would have the student ‘retry’ the quiz for a better score.

Under the settings, you can change the text between English USA and English UK (wonderful!), you can change the sound volume, music volume, whether or not the piano keys are labeled, whether or not you want the metronome sound (recommended) for the rhythm lessons and whether or not you want it on teacher mode. Teacher mode unlocks all the lessons. Otherwise you need to “pass” each lesson before you can progress to the next. I use teacher mode because I might have one student starting on lesson 1 and another starting on lesson 9.

This app does not keep track of individual students so you will need a way to remember where students are. So I came up with a solution for that and created this Music Theory for Beginners App Log that you can download and have students mark their scores, etc… This sheet will list all the lesson and quiz’s so you can get a good idea what is covered in this app.

I highly recommend this app, a definite must have for your studio! As I mentioned before, besides the iPad it is also compatible with the iPhone and iPod touch, but I think it is an ideal iPad app and that’s how my students use it.

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  1. Roz Gibbins

    I “liked” your facebook page!

    • foxxpianostudio

      Great Roz! Be sure to leave another comment for another entry! (Liking my Facebook page gives you an extra entry!) 🙂

    • foxxpianostudio

      Roz, email me ASAP! [email protected] (The code is expiring soon!) You are one of the winners of this app but I don’t have your email…

  2. Mary Y

    I hate that it uses the “Every Boy Deserves Fudge” and other acronyms for notes. That was very disappointing.

    • foxxpianostudio

      Hi Mary, Do you have this app? I found that quite a lot of theory software programs do use acronyms to teach notes. I look at it as another “tool”. While I don’t typically teach acronyms in my studio, I have found that many students learn them in school. And every once in awhile I will have a student that just needs that extra “tool” to use in order to get it. Because apps and theory software isn’t their “sole teacher” so to speak, I don’t worry about it to much. I am the one teaching them how to read and when they come across things like Every Good Boy… their reaction is more like, “oh that’s cool”. It doesn’t really set them back in anyway and sometimes it does help some students.

  3. Lavinia Livingston

    This app looks like a good supplement to formal lessons with a teacher. I look forward to using it with my young students as a way to keep them thinking about musical concepts away from lessons. Will it still be on sale after Nov. 23 in case I’m not a lucky winner?

    • foxxpianostudio

      To answer your question about the sale, I was told that they don’t have any plans anytime soon for the sale to end. So I think it is safe to say that it should still be on sale after the contest is over. 😉

  4. Sheila Dacus

    Thanks for all your research on new resources for us piano teachers!

  5. Joy Morin

    I have heard good things about this app — and would love to try it! Thanks for your review.

  6. Lacy

    I have downloaded this app! Love it! Thanks for reviewing it!

  7. Pamela Pender

    Thanks for the info. I will seriously look at this app! Pam

  8. Julia T.

    Thank you, Jennifer, for the helpful review. I’ve been looking at this app for awhile now and would love to win a copy!

  9. Karen Thompso

    Would like to have this app.

  10. Karen Thompso

    Liked on fb too

  11. Ashley

    I would love to add this app to my collection of studio apps! Looks awesome. Thanks for the great review.

  12. Ashley

    Already have liked you on Facebook as well. 🙂

  13. Cheryl Rytting

    This looks like a very helpful app. I like to approach theory from many different angles and wth a variety of activities. I would certainly enjoy having this available for m y students in my studio!


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