Making Music Worksheets Using Rhythm Fonts

A frequent question I receive from blog readers is about what method/software do I use to make music worksheets.  Since discovering music fonts (and publishing my blog post on music fonts last Spring), I have been using music fonts more and more for my printables and using Finale less and less.  Finale is great and totally necessary for printing compositions and arrangements, but it’s not quite as convenient for making music worksheets.

To help answer some of those questions about how to get started using music fonts for creating music worksheets, I decided to create a quick video showing the process for creating a rhythm worksheet using my two favorite music fonts: MusiSync and Rhythms.  These two fonts are so simple to use, you might not even need a character map (as described in the full post about music fonts).  Before getting started, you will need to download and then install both of these fonts onto your computer.  You will also need the program Microsoft Publisher (part of the Microsoft Office suite), or a similar program.

It’s my first try doing a video tutorial.  Let me know what you think.  :)

Update: Here is a follow-up video that talks about using two other fonts, that will allow you to create melodic examples in your worksheets.  And here is one more video tutorial, showing another option for making worksheets: using png image files of various music symbols.

Joy Morin is a piano teacher in northwest Ohio (United States) who enjoys keeping her teaching fresh with new ideas and resources. serves as a journal of her adventures in piano teaching as well as a place to exchange ideas and resources.

Joy has blogged 1131 posts here.

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  1. Posted 25 March 2013 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    Thanks so much for the tutorial. I would never have thought to use MS Publisher. Your previous post on fonts is very helpful, as well. I’ve been using MS Paint and a variety of clip art, but your process is much more efficient.

  2. Denise
    Posted 25 March 2013 at 12:10 pm | Permalink

    This is awesome! Thanks so much for sharing, it really is a lot easier than using finale.
    Is there also a simpler way to draw fragments of melodies instead of doing it on finale, e.g. a whole page of 1 – 2 bar phrases for melodic dictation?

    • Posted 25 March 2013 at 12:20 pm | Permalink

      Stay tuned for a post later this week (or possibly next week) that might be helpful for that. ;)

  3. Deanna
    Posted 25 March 2013 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    LOVE the tutorial! Thank you so much for sharing Joy. I can’t wait to get started. Do you or anyone else have any suggestions on making shape song worksheets. Have you ever created shape songs using rhythm fonts?

    • Posted 25 March 2013 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

      No, I haven’t ever experimented with shape notes. There might be fonts available for them – who knows? I’d Google it and see what comes up!

  4. Posted 25 March 2013 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    You are wonderful!!! Thank you so much for sharing this information–so helpful!!

  5. Anne
    Posted 25 March 2013 at 1:06 pm | Permalink

    This is great!! Thanks! Do you know if this will work in Pages as opposed to the Microsoft programs?

    • Posted 25 March 2013 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

      I haven’t tried it, but it should probably work just as well!

  6. Posted 25 March 2013 at 1:49 pm | Permalink

    Awesome, thanks for the tutorial.

  7. Posted 25 March 2013 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    Oh, my goodness! I wish I had know how to do this before I created 7 levels of theory tests for our local piano festival! Thank you – will be easier next time!

  8. Maryjane Peluso
    Posted 25 March 2013 at 2:46 pm | Permalink

    Hi Joy,
    I really liked your demo! So clear and concise and easy to follow.
    I’m always looking for new stuff (love those two new music fonts).
    Also it was fun to actually hear your voice :)

  9. Susan Hong
    Posted 25 March 2013 at 11:23 pm | Permalink

    Hi Joy :)

    Thanks so much for your wonderful ideas and your kindness for sharing with us
    your knowledge. You are much appreciated !!


    • Posted 25 March 2013 at 11:29 pm | Permalink

      Hi Susan,

      You are the one who inspired me to do this as a video, so thank YOU! :) :)

      • Susan Hong
        Posted 26 March 2013 at 4:15 pm | Permalink

        Thanks Joy :) Look forward to many more years of your talent !!

  10. Posted 26 March 2013 at 1:03 am | Permalink

    Fabulous post, Joy! I’ve got a related question: I had a lot of incentive sheets and worksheets that I did on Publisher when I had a PC. I’ve had to delete all those that I did with Publisher for PC because I couldn’t figure any way to convert them. I’m kind of doubting there is any way to do that, but I thought I would ask you if you think it’s possible.

    • Posted 26 March 2013 at 1:05 am | Permalink

      Forgot to mention I have a Mac now and Office for Mac.

    • Posted 26 March 2013 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

      Huh, I would have thought that the files would open just fine in Publisher, even when going between PC and Mac. What happened when you tried to open the files in the Mac Publisher/Word? Did they refuse to open?

  11. Posted 26 March 2013 at 3:46 am | Permalink

    THANK YOU! I cannot express how happy I am to know about these music fonts! I have struggled with creating games and materials for my students because I could not find a good way to do musical notation. The tutorial was great. I just whipped out my own rhythm worksheet to tie in with an activity we did at group class today. I am so thrilled to know how to do this.

  12. Amy Chaplin
    Posted 26 March 2013 at 1:18 pm | Permalink

    Love this! Thank you so much! I’ve just been doing it the hard way…with clip art, eek! Would love to see an easy way to incorporate other music symbols and staff notes.

  13. Andrea
    Posted 3 April 2013 at 11:33 pm | Permalink

    Amazing tutorial!!! Thanks for sharing!!! Please do more of these…so helpful. :)

  14. Grace Tan
    Posted 28 August 2013 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

    An avid fan of your site. I was planning to start a blog to share my experiences and have these ideas on paper. Didn’t know how to get it on the blog and also how to make worksheets. All I have to say is that, you are a life saver. Thank you for all your effort and your sharing. Will try to jump start my life long dream……of writing.

  15. Andrew J Dorsett
    Posted 2 November 2013 at 9:20 pm | Permalink

    Thanks. You did a great job.

  16. Natalie
    Posted 30 January 2014 at 12:42 pm | Permalink

    Thank you so much for the tutorials! My husband can make them for me in Illustrator or Photoshop, but I have to wait for him to have the time. Now I can make them by myself! Thank you, thank you!

  17. Linda DuBose
    Posted 6 March 2015 at 11:29 am | Permalink

    I love your tutorial. Thank you very much for sharing your skills. My problem is my lack of computer skill! I have downloaded the files but do not know how to insert them into Microsoft Publisher so that I can use them. Can you help?

    • Posted 6 March 2015 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

      Sure, Linda! Once you have download the ZIP file, doubled click it so that your computer will “un-archive” it into a folder containing all of the individual PNG image files. Then, I recommend moving that folder from your computer’s Downloads folder to a place on your hard drive where you can easily find it again in the future, such as on your Desktop or in the Documents folder.

      To bring the images into Microsoft Publisher, you can drag-and-drop the desired image file into your document. Or, you can go in the menu to Insert > Photo > Picture From File. A screen will come up allowing you to navigate to the place where you have the PNG files saved on your computer. Select the desired image and click Insert.

      I hope that helps!

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