What is the right age to begin music lessons?
Music is something that people of all ages can enjoy. Even small children love music – even if they aren’t sure what it is yet.
Music has an incredible effect on the brain. We’ve talked about it before. In fact, we’ve covered just some of the countless studies that have
shown the amazing impact that an education in music can have on the developing mind.
As kids grow, they might become more interested in music – listening to it, even playing it!
But are they ready for music lessons? What is a good age for them to begin music lessons? This article will help answer those questions and help you decide what action to take for your kids.
Music Lesson Age Groups
Past studies have shown that early exposure to music helps children cultivate their interest and skill as they grow older, which can often lead to some long-term benefits of learning music.
Let’s take a look at what ages you can begin to encourage an interest in music in your child, and what ages are ideal for starting music lessons.
6 to 8 Months
Classes for parents and babies are a fantastic way to start your child’s education in music at as young an age as 6 to 8 months old. These classes tend to be shorter, running 30 to 40 minutes, and require the active participation of you, the parent. These simple classes introduce children to rhythm, harmony, and melody in a very basic way. Programs for 18 to 24-month-olds are also extremely popular. These classes usually also require parental participation, but by this age, the kids are starting to engage in the class activities a bit more on their own.
3 & 4 Years Old
Nowadays, especially in the city, there are a lot of programs designed for kids aged 3 and 4. Most people would agree that this is really the ideal time for kids to start their music experience. These music programs are usually about 30 to 35 minutes long and use a lot of props, singing, and movement to keep kids engaged. Many even incorporate arts and crafts and free play time with rhythm instruments. Most of the time parents aren’t required to participate in these kinds of programs, but there are some that do invite parents to join in on the fun.
Ages 5 & Up
5 years old is the typical age for either individual or group piano or violin lessons. The piano or keyboard is usually easier for kids aged 5 or 6, and just a single year of instruction at the piano gives an amazing foundation of basic music concepts, like the music alphabet, what quarter-, half-, and whole-notes are, and what a music staff does. Kids also tend to learn fun childhood classics like “Mary Had A Little Lamb” and “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star.”
Certain, modern, specialized programs, like KidzRock, take things a little bit further. Programs like these utilize miniaturized and simplified versions of instruments, like the guitar and keyboards, and use rock songs specifically written for the program to keep kids excited and engaged.
Ages 7 & Up
Around age 7 most of the orchestra becomes available for students to learn. Instruments like the guitar, drums, stringed instruments, and woodwinds, like the saxophone and clarinet, are available for this age group. A lot of the same concepts that are covered at an earlier age for piano students are learned. That said, kids who have at least 6 months of piano training, and already understand many musical elements, find it easier to transition to another instrument.
And of course, while it’s never too early to get your child started in music, it’s never too late either!
Grades 3 & Up
Even in this era of budget cuts, most elementary schools have an opportunity for children in grades 3 and up to start taking group music lessons in school. Instruction is usually available in pretty much the whole orchestra. This gives kids the opportunity to play in a band or orchestra with their friends, something most people remember fondly throughout their lifetime. The only disadvantage to this system is that any student who might need a little extra help might not get it, which can lead to discouragement. Classes outside school can help to reinforce the lessons learned and can help them even exceed what their classmates are doing.
Adult Music Education
We’re spending a lot of time talking about the very earliest opportunities for musical education for children, but the fact is, it’s never too early or too late to start. The “best” time to start music lessons is right now, no matter your age! If you’ve always wanted to pick up an instrument, or if you gave up on music as a child because of a bad teacher, now is the perfect time to start again! You can still take instrument or voice lessons, and even form an incredible bond with your children as you both embark on a journey of learning and musical discovery together.
The actual instrument your child might be interested in can also impact when they can start lessons. Some studies have shown that children can not only hear music while in the womb, but some even seem to develop style and genre preferences as a direct result!
To make this learning fun, you can contact Multibhashi