Join over 19,000 others and become a member of - it's free!

join for free

6th Sep 2023: Quizzes fixed, thanks for your patience.

This site is written by

victoria Williams Music Theory

Victoria Williams

LmusTCL BA Mus (Hons) MISM

Learn more...

book cover notes


We have 2552 guests and 5 members online

Video Courses by MyMusicTheory

Please note: this website is not run by the ABRSM and is a completely independent business.

Get the MyMusicTheory Course Book
Next UK ABRSM Paper-based Theory Exams Grades 6-8:
Sat 17th June 2023 [Grades 1-5 now available online on demand]
Next UK Trinity Paper-based Theory Exams Grades 1-8 & diplomas:
from Sat 4th Nov 2023

Browse by Music Grade: Grade 1 | Grade 2 | Grade 3 | Grade 4 | Grade 5 | Grade 6 | Grade 7 | Grade 8 | DiplomasWhat Grade am I?

bs1Download this Grade 1 Music Theory Course or get the Printed Book Version

Buy Grade 1 Theory Past Papers

Get some help!

Learn Grade One Music Theory Online

Welcome to the Grade 1 Music Theory start page!

If you (or your child/pupil) are just starting out on your music theory journey, this the right place to begin!

You can learn with MyMusicTheory in different ways, depending on your specific needs. We have:

  1. Free website based lessons
  2. PDF downloads (paid)
  3. Video courses with PDFs included (paid)


The free website lessons cover the whole syllabus, but there are only limited audio examples and you can only do the exercises on your screen. You might prefer this option if you are learning on the go, or don't want to pay anything.

The PDF downloads are the next level up - the lessons are mostly the same as those you can find for free on the website, but they are in a printable format. This means that you can print out the exercises to complete with a pencil (as you would in an exam) and also make your own notes on the pages. It also means you can easily search for information within the book using the command ctrl+F, and use the whole course off line.

Finally, the video courses are the most expensive option, but give you the most benefits. The video tutorials are about 5-10 minutes long each, totalling around 3 hours per grade/course. The video courses allow you to listen to the sound of what you're learning, and you can also follow step-by-step demonstrations. You get access to your teacher (me!) if you have any questions or problems. All video courses also include the course PDF which is available separately. You need an internet connection to watch the videos, but can download the PDFs to use offline. There is no time limit for using the video courses and it's a one-off payment.

Scroll down the page for a list of topics you need to learn at Grade 1.


How would you like to learn?

Other options:

ABRSM & Trinity Syllabus (Grade 1)


  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. 

  2. Simple time signatures of 2/4, 3/4 & 4/4, bar-lines and the grouping of the notes listed above within these times.

  3. Composition of a two-bar rhythm in answer to a given rhythm starting on the first beat of a bar**. 

  4. 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. 

  5. 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). 

  6. 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.

*ABRSM only 

** From January 2018 this is Trinity only

Read the complete ABRSM music theory syllabus

Read the complete Trinity music theory syllabus




now on amazon topbanner normalamazon logo