There is a popular debate about the right age to start music lessons for a child all over the world. Some believe that children should be exposed to classical music from the tender age of three. In contrast, others believe that children should start lessons when they gravitate towards a musical instrument naturally. Throughout history, many amazing musicians have started early, such as Mozart. We often see child prodigies on reality shows in recent times, which is quite inspiring.
This article discusses all you need to know about the right age for music lessons for your child and how you can determine that it is time for your little one to step into the world of music.
The Best Age Range for Children
There is no ‘right’ or agreed-upon age at which children should start taking music lessons. However, most child psychologists and experts suggest that the best time ranges between three and eight years of age.
Before you decide to start music lessons for your child, make sure you understand why you are doing so. For this, you need to consider certain factors, such as:
The outcome you are expecting from music lessons
Your child’s physical and mental development
Any issues your child may have
The benefits of starting at the particular age
Whether your child starts taking music lessons at the age of three or 13, there will always be certain benefits and drawbacks that you need to take into account. Addressing these factors will help determine whether your child is ready to take music lessons or not.
Does the Choice of Musical Instrument Affect Your Child’s Starting Age?
A major thing to consider while discussing the age at which kids should start taking music lessons is the instrument they want to learn – or you want them to learn. For instance, if you used to play the guitar when you were young, you might find that your child is also inclined towards it, especially if they have observed you playing.
This category includes rhythm instruments like drums, bongos, xylophones, tambourines, etc. They are easier to pick up for toddlers and preschoolers, and you can get your children started much earlier on them.
Contrary to popular belief, toddlers can be introduced to the violin since it is a smaller instrument and can be easily picked up by them. Moreover, they can progress to the viola or the cello as they grow older.
The piano is one of the most popular instruments out there, and you can get your children started learning them as soon as they turn two or three years old. They can move on to more advanced techniques as they grow older.
The recorder is a good introductory woodwind instrument that your child can start learning when they are seven years old or older. It facilitates coordination between their finger positioning, blowing, and breathing. Moreover, it enables them to level up to a flute or piccolo as they grow older.
The guitar is one of the most popular instruments, and they come in different types, including acoustic and electric. You can expect your child to start learning guitar basics when they are five years old and move on to more complex learning aspects as they grow older.
The trumpet is a brass instrument that is perfect for children to start learning when they are in grades 4-5 or when they turn nine or ten years old. Just like the flute or bassoon, it facilitates coordination between the mouth, fingers, and breath.
Things to Consider When Deciding the Right Learning Age for Your Child.
Although there is no suitable age for your child to start music lessons, you can make the decision based on certain considerations.
Children are more receptive by age 3
Children develop certain parts of their brain that facilitate music learning at this age. Plus, starting music lessons at this age also enhances their neurological development.
Music teachers have age limitations
Music teachers also have age restrictions because younger children can’t focus or sit in place for long periods. Therefore, you will have to find out if teachers in your location will accept your child or not.
Most children start with the piano
Usually, parents start piano lessons for their children when they turn three years old. They can easily press the keys at this age, and it also becomes easier for them to transition to other instruments.
Music learning applications facilitate learning
There are various music learning applications and programs that you can use to supplement your child’s music lessons. You can even use these apps to teach them fully if you can’t find the right teacher nearby. Moreover, if your child is learning a less common instrument like the bassoon, you can check out these tips to help them learn better.
Last but not least, you can also introduce your child to musical instruments even before they start taking music lessons. It will familiarize them with the instrument, and they can learn the theory when they are more confident. Also, you should keep an eye on your child’s interest and willingness to learn music, as it would help them be more involved in the learning process.