Scientists have long known that there is a connection between musical training and mathematical and executive function skills. Learning to play an instrument can actually change your child’s brain in a way that gives them an advantage in many other fields. However, choosing an instrument to play can be a difficult task. Whether your child plans to join the school band or start her own garage band, these four instruments are great options to get started.
Piano, the Gateway to Music
Dubbed “the gateway to music” due to its massive range, the piano is one of the best beginner instruments. It’s also very easy to get started because there are no breathing techniques or mouth positions to learn. Your child can learn to play a simple song by the second or third lesson. The biggest disadvantage of the piano is its cost, but electronic keyboards provide an affordable option for practicing at home.
Guitar, Not Just for Rockers
It might have a reputation as the coolest instrument, but there is more to the guitar than rock music. From the explosive sounds of the electric guitar to the lonesome hum of a steel guitar, there are many styles of this instrument to choose from. The acoustic classic guitar is usually the best option for students. Because of its popularity, private guitar lessons are also easier to find than private lessons for other instruments.
Clarinet, a Marching Band Classic
Picture a marching band and the clarinet is probably one of the first instruments to come to mind. This woodwind instrument is lightweight, easy to learn and pleasant-sounding, which makes it a favorite among students. In fact, a simple plastic version of the clarinet called a recorder is often of the first instruments children are exposed to in elementary school.
Flute, an Ancient Art Form
The flute is one of the oldest instruments known to man. The very first ones were made of wood or bone, but today’s flutes are fashioned from shiny metals. The flute is a great choice for cash-strapped families because quality used models can be found for as little as $100. However, the flute comes with a steeper learning curve than any of the other instruments mentioned here, and it can take a lot of practice to get the technique just right.
Although learning an instrument has many advantages, remember that the choice is ultimately up to your child. Don’t push him into music if he isn’t interested or force him to choose one instrument if he would rather play a different one.
By Meghan Belnap
Meghan Belnap is a freelance writer who enjoys spending time with her family. She loves being in the outdoors and exploring new opportunities whenever they arise. Meghan finds happiness in researching new topics that help to expand her horizons. You can often find her buried in a good book or out looking for an adventure. You can connect with her on Facebook right here and Twitter right here.