Choosing your instrument can sometimes be tricky and you want to make a good decision. Here are five tips to move you forward.
1. What does your child like?
Has your child expressed a preference? It can be the smallest thing: delight with the sounds from a busker, something their friends are doing, a musician they saw on TV. Intrinsic motivation is always better than extrinsic pressure and you’ll have a much better long term result if you nurture an initial enthusiasm for a particular instrument.
2. Have a go!
Try to have a go on as many instruments as possible – at school, friend’s houses, instrument fairs, children’s concerts. You can always book a free trial session with a teacher to get some ideas of how an instrument feels and sounds.
3. Write down your questions
Write down as many thoughts, questions and ideas as you can about choosing your instrument including worries and expectations. Keep adding to the list over a few days. You’ll quickly see the thoughts that are frivolous and holding you back, leaving the motivations that you really care about to focus on.
4. What is your motivation?
What do you want your child to get out of their music lessons and what made you think of music rather than any other activities? This is often not discussed but it is, nevertheless, incredibly important. The benefits of music are often thrown around but rarely fully appreciated. For us at MusicMaps, learning music is not just about intellectual, physical and emotional development but also about finding out who you are as a person and how you interact with others. You might realise you are focused on doing grades or it’s more about playing at school in groups and orchestras.
5. What sort of teacher?
What sort of teacher will your child respond to? Fun and energetic? Considered and methodical? If you can get this question into focus you’ll find that it might lead you to particular instruments and the teaching styles that commonly go with those teaching styles
Please don’t hesitate to call us a MusicMaps – we have a wealth of knowledge derived from teaching for decades and whether it is taking on Grade 1 piano or the BeBop lines of Coltrane we are very happy to help. You might also like to check out our other articles on choosing an instrument…