If you are reading this, most likely you are a parent trying to figure out what would be the best instrument for your child. Well there are many things to consider when doing this. Believe it or not, age, physical strength, height, size of hands, oral features, and personality. These are all factors to consider when choosing the right instrument for you and your child.
That’s right, I said you and your child. I say this because you have to choose an instrument that you are willing to help your child learn. Choose the right teacher, pay for lessons, and yes you have to listen to them practicing every day.
In this article, I will be sharing the benefits of children playing instruments, as well as a guide to help you and your child choose the right instrument.
At What Age Should My Child Begin Playing An Instrument?
The recommended age for children to start learning music is five years old. Learning music should make your child happy. If music doesn’t excite and make your child happy, a musical instrument may not be for them. If you have a child who loves listening to music, take note at the type of music they enjoy. The parent should play different types of music and notice how they react. Do they dance, do they try to sing to it, do their eyes light up when they hear certain sounds. These are ways of getting to know what really interest your child.
As a parent myself of twins, they are all grown up now, but when they were little, even before five years old, I notice that certain songs would make my children react. And both of them liked different songs than one another.
Even though they say the recommended age is five, you can start much sooner to introduce your child to music. Just simply play different songs with different instruments and see how they react.
Until the age of five, childrens contact with musical instruments should be completely open. In other words, children should have access to all instrument sounds. This will help you hone in on what instrument your child likes to touch and listen to.
I’m not saying go out and buy a bunch of instruments, I’m saying is let them listen to songs that have different instruments in them. Take them to a music store and see which instruments they gravitate to.
Benefits Of Playing A Musical Instrument For Your Child
Musical contact at an early age will be very beneficial to your child. Music will enrich their skills and personal development. Here are a few reasons why a child should learn to play an instrument.
1. Increase Memory Skills.
Learning an instrument teaches a child how to create, store and retrieve memories more effectively. Playing an instrument is like a total workout for the brain. Music instructions appears to accelerate brain development in young children, particularly in the areas of the brain responsible for processing sound, language development, speech perception and reading skills.
Music instruction speeds up the maturity of the auditory pathway in the brain and increases its efficiency.
2. Teaches Perseverance And Creates A Sense Of Achievement
Learning to play an instrument takes a lot of patience and practice. During music lessons, a teacher will set short term and long term goals. Every time a child reaches one of these goals, they will feel a sense of achievement and pride.
3. Improves Coordination
Children who play an instrument have better hand eye coordination over those who do not.
4. Improves Math Skills
Music and math are highly intertwined. This happens when the child understand beat, rhythm and scales.
Learning how to divide, create fractions, (as in quarter notes, half notes and whole notes), and recognize patterns. it seems the music wires the childs brain to help them better understand other areas of math.
5. Improves reading and comprehension skills
Children who are learning to play an instrument requires constant reading and understanding. Children need to identify the note on the music sheet and play their instrument, how long to hold it, what fingers go where, and how loud to play it. This takes a lot of skills happening all at once.
Children also need to identify how the note is supposed to be played, short and crisp or smooth and connected to the next note.
Reading music can even help in literature in school classes.
6. Music Theory Is A Great Way For A student To Be Exposed To Culture And History
Theory has a great history and can be taught as part of your Childs learning of a musical instrument.
Most music is a reflection of the culture and era on which it was written. Exposing a child to multiple types of music, will allow them to have a glimpse into the past. Understanding where their instrument came from, can give children a deeper understanding of what they are playing and may become more attached to it.
7. Creates responsibility
Having responsibility for an instrument gives children a sense of pride. They know if they don’t keep up on regular maintenance, their instrument will not stay in working order. Encourage children to stay on top of the regular maintenance on their instrument. When they are responsible they are more likely to take care of it themselves.
There are many other affects the musical instruments has on children. Some other affects are they nurture self expression, improves listening skills and improves social skills. Children are more likely to be sociable with other kids who may play the same instrument as them. To be part of a group, to feel like they belong.
When Considering Different Musical Instruments
As a parent you want to give your child the sense of knowing they can pick their instrument of choice without making them feel like this instrument is too loud, my parents won’t like it, or it’s too expensive.
To start your children on an instrument doesn’t have to be strenuous. Let your child know that experimenting with different types of instrument is ok.
Remember for their first instrument, a parent should consider facts like, age, physical strength, height, oral features, size of hands and personality. If you take these things into consideration before buying their instrument, your child will be more comfortable and be apt to stay in music for a long time.
Some children may be more motivated to learn popular instruments so to make friends who also play the same instrument. Popular instruments also have more teachers and access to more resources. You will also be more likely to find a teacher near by, so not to expose your child to long commutes. It is essential that your child is enthusiastic in learning the instrument at the beginning. Consider letting your child experience each instrument at a shop.
Unpopular instruments will give your child, as they get older, the benefits of being in high demand by ensembles. However finding teachers and resources will be a little more difficult. Some of the most popular instruments are below.
List Of Instruments
Pianos tend to be the most expensive and you have to have the room for one. Maybe start them off with a keyboard instead. They take up much less room and is only a fraction of the cost. If they stick with it, later on you could always invest in a new or used piano.
Violins along with flutes, trumpets and clarinets are a lot more affordable, starting with beginning models at around $250.00. As your child grows, you may have to invest in a larger size and higher quality instruments.
Guitars are very popular these days for children, with all the different sizes and tones, it makes choosing the right guitar for your child a breeze. Maybe start them off with a ukulele. Something their small hands can handle. They are inexpensive and both you and your child can learn. Get a guitar for yourself and encourage your child to play together.
Music should be a part of your Childs development whether it playing an instrument or simply just listening. They should be encouraged to go in any direction when it comes to music.
Finding the right instrument for your child is essential. Make sure they are of suitable size and decent quality. Getting the right instruments is not the only element for your Childs success in music. You have to take into fact their commitment to practice is just as important, if not more.
If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below and I will get back to you as soon as possible.
Have a musical day.