Whole and Half Steps

About This Lesson

“Take one half step, two whole steps then turn left at the light and you’ll see it.”

What is a Half Step on the Piano?
A half step is a distance.  You create a half step by playing the piano key that is directly next to it.  You have to include the black notes or you are going to be mistaken.

EXAMPLE: If you want to go a half step above (to the right) C then you need to go up to the black note C#.
EXAMPLE: If you want to go a half step below (to the left) C then you need to go down to B.

*Continuously moving in half steps in either direction is called a “Chromatic Scale”.

C C# D D# E F F# G G# A A# B

What is a Whole Step on the Piano?
A whole step is two half steps put together. 2 half = whole

EXAMPLE: If you want to go a whole step above C then you need to go to C# then end on D. D is a whole step above C.
EXAMPLE: If you want to go a whole step below C then you need to go to B then end on Bb. Bb is a whole step below C.

*Continuously moving in whole steps in either direction is called a “Whole Tone (Note) Scale”.

1) C D E F# G# A#
2) C# D# F G A B

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