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Grade One Music Theory Resources


Grade One is a gentle introduction to music theory - get started with time signatures, key signatures, major scales and intervals. 

Learn about the treble and bass clefs and learn some of the most commonly used symbols and foreign terms in musical scores.


Resources for Grade 1


ABRSM Syllabus (Grade 1)

  • Note values of semibreve, minim, crotchet, quaver and semiquaver, and their equivalent rests (candidates may use the terms ‘whole note’, ‘half note’, etc.). Tied notes. Single-dotted notes and rests. 
  • Simple time signatures of 2/4, 3/4 & 4/4, bar-lines and the grouping of the notes listed above within these times. Composition of a two-bar rhythm in answer to a given rhythm starting on the first beat of a bar. 
  • The stave. Treble (G) and bass (F) clefs. Names of notes on the stave, including middle C in both clefs. Sharp, flat and natural signs, and their cancellation. 
  • Construction of the major scale, including the position of the tones and semitones. Scales and key signatures of the major keys of C, G, D and F in both clefs, with their tonic triads (root position), degrees (number only), and intervals above the tonic (by number only). 
  • Some frequently used terms and signs concerning tempo, dynamics, performance directions and articulation marks. Simple questions will be asked about a melody written in either treble or bass clef.


Read the complete ABRSM music theory syllabus