The perfect time is now!
As a music teacher and music studio owner, the question I am most often asked is “When is the perfect age to start music lessons for my child?” The answer is simple, right now!
The explanation for that answer is a little more detailed. Children, at any age, can benefit from exposure to music. We have seen children blossom with any genre of music, so play a variety and see what makes your baby or child happy!
Children in private lessons make impressive cognitive gains
The links between early exposure and cognitive and emotional development are widely studied and accepted, and in fact, studies have shown children with at least two years of private lessons showed enhanced cognitive control, which aids in information retention and behavior regulation. So where should you start?
I recommend parents begin playing music in their home and car and join a group music class as early as possible. Sing, dance, and have fun! This early exposure to music assists with language and social skills and supports physical and emotional development in babies and young children. Music and movement/dance classes will certainly help your child learn rhythm and timing which aid in preparing for private instrument lessons when a little older. I usually recommend starting private lessons around age six.
Which instrument to begin the musical journey?
Now that they are ready to play an instrument, the big question is, what instrument is best? As I said earlier, the best instrument is the one that’s most appealing to the child. But in all, the piano is the most common instrument for beginners. New students are able to quickly make music and their confidence grows! Music theory and concepts learned on the piano can be later transferred to other instruments as your child’s skills and musical interests expand.
The journey continues
In addition to piano, guitar (ukulele for little ones), drums, violin, and voice are wonderful for developing discipline and focus, and so many studies prove a connection to improved academic, physical, and social skills as well as improved self-esteem! In our studio, we strive to expose our students to many genres of music and then let them choose what they like, as a student of any age will want to learn and practice the types of music they like to listen to!
The perfect time is now!
Simply stated, the right time for music lessons is today! Whether you are 1 month or 100 years old, music is good for your body and brain, and something that can be enjoyed for a lifetime!
Read my tips on how you can encourage your child’s success, along with thoughts on how to prepare for that inevitable moment they say they’re ready to quit. And please leave us a comment with your questions or thoughts!
Cecilia Rowe is the director of Courtnay and Rowe and The Music Studio at Vinings, and has over 25 years in music education as an instructor and a local business owner.