Music Sight Reading Step By Step
Preferably, use a sight reading method, like Sight Reading & Rhythm Every Day, Book 1A
a method to practice music sight reading that I really recommend and have used very successfully with my students.
Bartok's Mikrokosmos Volume 1 (Pink)
is also good for sight-reading practice, starting with book 1.
Otherwise, just use very easy, short pieces at least 2 levels under your
Here is a Step by Step Plan:
- Prepare: Before actually playing each exercise, play on top of
the keys without pressing them down. Play on top of the keys like this through the
whole piece. This helps to prepare your “inner ear” and makes it easier
- Count the rhythm: Count the rhythm as you prepare, also when playing "on top of" the keys.
- Block (play the two notes together) any intervals larger than a second. It helps your muscle memory.
- Don't think! When you sight read, you can’t really think as
you play. You have to train yourself to just move along- and not to stop
or replay a wrong note.
- Use easy music. If a piece you sight read has too many mistakes-
it is not simple or short enough. I tell my students that one mistake
is OK, two is not OK- then you need an easier piece, or to play slower, or both.
- Don't look at your hands. Force yourself not
to look at you hands when you sight read. You simply do not have the
- Look ahead: You have to always look a few notes ahead from the ones you are
playing, and just go, go, go!
Just do it. And keep on doing it!
If you use one of the books I suggested, follow all the instructions,
and after the first three books with only a few minutes a day, you will
notice a huge improvement in how you can sight-read piano music as you