Tonal Resources

Tonal Learning Sequence

I introduce rhythm skills approximately in the order listed in this Tonal Learning Sequence document.


The flashcards below should be printed out on 8.5″ x 11″ paper.  You can then enlarge them (129%) onto 11″ x 17″ heavy weight paper using a photocopier.  After cutting the paper in half, the new and bigger flashcards should be 5.5″ tall.

The square note indicates the location of the tonic.  For major scales, this would be do.  However, for minor (la-based), you can make the square be la.  This also works for modes (dorian mode:  square is re, etc.).

One and Two-Line Staves

These cards are designed for young students who may find it easier to understand the concept of line vs. space notes when presented with fewer staff lines.

Tonal Patterns: 1-line staff

Tonal Patterns: 2-line staff

Do to So above: Stepwise Motion & Skips within the Tonic Triad

Patterns Do to So: Do = Second Space

Patterns Do to So: Do = Second Line

Patterns Do to So: Do = FirstSpace

Patterns Do to So: Do = First Line

Patterns Do to So: Do = Space Below Staff

Patterns Based on Harmonic Progressions

I-V Progression Patterns

I-V7 Progression Patterns


8 Responses to Tonal Resources

  1. John Gallagher November 12, 2019 at 7:23 am #

    Hi Mr. Driscoll,   
     I was searching and I found your wonderful melody and rhythm flashcards! I am interested in purchasing them, are you still selling them and if so, will they be printed on heavy weight paper?  Is your price still the same?

    Thank you,
    John Gallagher

    • Michael November 17, 2019 at 8:04 am #

      Hi John,
      Yes, I can still print the flashcards and they’re printed on heavy weight paper.

  2. Jonathan Miller August 12, 2016 at 12:03 pm #

    Thank-you so much for making this resource available! I’m certain I will use the tonic triad flashcards frequently in my high school music rudiments class this year.

  3. Anna January 1, 2016 at 6:57 pm #

    Mike, I can’t thank you enough for all you’ve done here. I am back teaching general music k-5 as well as 6th-8th grade choir after being in the regular classroom for 16 years. I need to reload my skills and these tools will help me. I only wish I’d found them at the beginning of the school year. No matter, I will begin at the beginning when we return from winter break.

    Thanks again!!!!

  4. Tania Mannion August 15, 2014 at 8:49 pm #

    I echo the comments above. Thank you for providing these for free! I used the rhythm flashcards with great success in my previous high school band program. Now I plan on using both with my new beginning high school choir. I can’t wait to see what they will be able to do.

  5. Elizabeth Cadigan September 2, 2013 at 12:25 pm #

    Hello Michael!

    I would like to say thank you for sharing these flashcards! I was looking for some solfege warmup ideas when I came across a comment you left at ChoralNet about your website. I think these flash cards as well as many other of your resources are invaluable! Thank you again for sharing. I look forward to using them within my classroom next week!

  6. Debbie Wood September 9, 2012 at 2:20 pm #

    Wow! Awesome resources. I just learned about this and can’t wait to see how to incorporate into my classes. Is it possible that these could be fixed for download to computer and/or ipad? I’m working on acquiring electronic equipment to use in my classroom and this is exactly one of the uses I am wanting to start using. Thanks so much for your work on this. I appreciate it.

    • Michael September 9, 2012 at 4:19 pm #

      Hi Debbie,
      These are all PDF files, so I believe you should be able to show these with a computer/projector setup. I’m not sure how useful they’d be as a teaching tool in that format though because you wouldn’t be able to change the order easily. I can print these up and mail them to you for a fee if that’s easier for you.

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