Tutorial 1 - Basics


Welcome to Codetta! This tutorial will explore the first steps you need to know to start writing music.

To look at different tutorials click the grey question mark button as shown below (top right of screen)!

Codetta is divided into 4 areas:

  1. The playback controls. Pressing play starts sounding any notes and blocks we have connected, and stop turns it all off.

  2. The toolbar is where all of our blocks are sorted. Each tab represents a different category, making sure our blocks are neatly organised.

  3. The workspace area. This is where we will drag and assemble our blocks. You are able to navigate around it using the bright blue scrollbars.

  4. The bin! Drag blocks here when you wish to remove them from the workspace.

Connecting Blocks

In order for any of our blocks to generate sound we must connect them to a speaker block. This is so that the sound knows where to come out of. Click and drag the speaker block (shown above) from the toolbar into the workspace, and try moving it around.

Now let's start making some music! In the toolbar, go to the "Bar" tab and drag the "4/4 bar" to the workspace.

You may have to wiggle blocks close together to encourage a connection!

Try connecting it to the speaker block and moving both blocks around the workspace together.

HINT: Lookout for the yellow highlighting that appears when blocks are close to connecting!

Note Values

Mostly in music, notes are grouped into a bar. An individual bar only lasts for a finite amount of time so can only be filled by a finite number of notes.

Different notes last for a fraction of the entire bar. Hence, different combinations of notes can fill up a bar in many different ways.

Codetta does the maths for us, so we don't have to get confused!

To add a note to the "4/4 bar", click the plus button and select a note length.

Try different note lengths and see how much space they occupy within the bar. If you run out of space and can no longer see the plus button, connect another "4/4 bar". To hear how long each note lasts, click the play button within the playback area.

If you add the wrong note - press the minus button to remove it!

TIP: If you run out of room on the workspace, move the giant scrollbars that are either side of the wood paneling.

Introduction to Pitch

Once you are familiar with the different rhythms it's time to vary the pitch of notes.

Pitch is how high or low sounding a single note is.

When hovering over a note bar, two buttons appear with up and down arrows. By clicking them we move the note up and down the different lines on our bar (called the stave).

Each note has a corresponding letter.

Try moving some notes around, clicking play after each movement to hear the difference in sound.

The play button is in the top left of the screen!


So far you have learnt everything you need to know to start making music in Codetta, although there is much more to explore. To practice what you know, try to write the popular nursery rhyme "Twinkle Twinkle Little Star". The music is below to help you...

You may like to clean up your workspace by dragging your current blocks to the bin!