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Musical instrument for 7 year old

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Hi there,

We want to send our 7year old daughter to learn some musical instrument. She has the disadvantage that both her parents musical skills are slightly worse than an average cow.  Which would be a good instrument to start with for a child ?. Any recommendations, experience to share, would be very helpful. Thanks in advance

Regards

Jj

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Probably piano.  But in Germany it is common to learn the Melodica at that age and move to another instrument after one year or two.

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I'd recommend a recorder to learn to read music, it's not very expensive and easy to bring along. On the other hand, that is all true about the melodica too. 

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I gave Fuenfling's children (5, 18 mo.) harmonicas for Christmas. Easy as breathing in and out, encouraging when they can play simple tunes. Agree on recorder and melodica (my German granddaughters started with recorders, now play clarinet), guitar's a little tricky. Don't forget the accordions, piano and button.

61f313e183030_Accordionpiano.jpg.3e9229e

 

61f3140c68661_Accordionbutton.jpg.733d84

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All our kids started out on chime bars (separated out xylophone).

Start on a few notes, move along to more as they progress.

Easy to learn. Can be colour coded to help learning to read music.

 

The lesson (45 mins), once a week won't be enough. Practice always helps.

 

You need the nerves and patience to hear practice times.

 

It's all worth it in the end!

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See if your music school does some kind of taster thing.

 

Kids#1 and #2  got to do a Musikrondell or something at the Conservatory in Osnabrueck - it was fab - they went for maybe 10 weeks and tried different instruments.

 

Sadly we then moved to a place where the Musikschule had a really difficult website to navigate and if you went in person they were rude and unhelpful. Hey ho. 

 

Otherwise I'd start with piano and see how it goes. 7 is a good age to start. She can always try something else as well or instead over time. Try to get her into a habit of practice daily for a short time. It makes all the difference. 

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My brother was the only one of my siblings who went to music school and they started with the recorder and picked an instrument later.  He picked the violin.  The pros of starting out with a recorder is that they are cheap so if it turns out that she's not interested, at least you aren't out any money.

 

Here, a professional recorder player compares a $10 recorder to a $1000 recorder

$10 vs. $1000 recorder! | Team Recorder - YouTube

 

 

 

 

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Most of the public music schools, Stadt or Kreismusikschule, offer taster courses usually called something like Instrumentenkaroussell. They get to try out different instruments and do simple group activities to develop rhythm and pitch. 

By seven, many children already have an opinion on which instrument they like the sound of, if so, go for an instrument in that family. Interest and some self- motivation are vital for regular practice, which you should be prepared to encourage/supervise.

You  can usually rent the more expensive sorts of instruments to start with.

Don't forget singing! Unfortunately it's often neglected in schools due to the shortage of music teachers and lack of confidence amongst class teachers, and it's so foundational. There's so much lovely kiddy music on Youtube, action songs to sing along and move to. (You too!)

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I have an electric guitar, an acoustic guitar, a piano and drums at home. My 9 years old only cares about the piano.

And TBH, piano is the easiest instrument to start with. Don't bother spending much at start, get a second hand.

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10 minutes ago, MikeMelga said:

[..] at start, get a second hand.

Not having that makes the whole process of learning to play the piano pretty pointless.

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Technology is amazing and affordable today, you can buy an electric piano with weighted keys for like 200-300 EUR brand new, and cheaper second hand.   Decent classes is where the money will go, for our boy we pay 80 EUR a month for 30 minutes a week.  The classes are directly in the school, so at least the logistic is easy.  Check your school for possible agreements with private music schools.

 

I myself play guitar, mostly electric, and wouldn't recommend it for a 7 years old except if the kid is really into guitar.   We have as well an electric drumkit at home, and both my kids can play basic stuff and we used to jam frequently but they lost the interest.

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1 hour ago, franklan said:

Not having that makes the whole process of learning to play the piano pretty pointless.

Good enough for the "happy birthday" phase :D

 

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13 hours ago, jubinjohn said:

She has the disadvantage that both her parents musical skills are slightly worse than an average cow.  

My daughter had the same disadvantage….my musical skills being far less than any farm animal! :D

 

After the recorder and violin were non starters, when she was about 8, I bought a ‘nearly new’ Yamaha keyboard for around 150€. She did love that and managed to learn quite easily. There are lots of different modes, traditional piano too of course. The benefit is that it’s quite compact and easy to store when not in use. Most have USB/iPhone etc connections too. Something like these….https://www.ebay-kleinanzeigen.de/s-musikinstrumente/dortmund/preis:60:200/yamaha-keyboard/k0c74l1085

 

As the keyboard had been long abandoned in favour of other teenage hobbies, I sold it last year for about 100€ to a chap for his young daughter. He reported back that she loved it!

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See if the local music school has an information day - Tag der offenen Tür. The Musikschule around here has Musikalische Führerziehung were the kids try out different instruments such as xylophone, tirangle, bongos etc. But I think those really start at age four or so. We also learned the recorder (learned a new word today, thanks!) in elementary school. 

 

Maybe she also has a preference? I know I did. Teachers suggested the cello for me but I was dead set on the piano and had been since I was four because my grandma played. The rule in our house was that if we wanted to continue with the instruments, we had to practise every day. I think ten or 15 minutes in the beginning. 

The advantage of the piano is that while you might hit the wrong key, the note played will be correct :-) Much more difficult with woodwind, brass or string instruments other than the guitar... 

 

If she choses the piano and you end up getting an electric one, the most important thing is to go for an actual epiano with weighted keys NOT a keyboard to learn the difference the weight of the stroke makes. 

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I said guitar for a few reasons.  (I think keyboards are great too.)  The thing about the guitar is it such a social and portable instrument.  And even if you are not brilliant (but also not awful!) you can join in with other people, which does not work so well with other instruments.    And of course you can become brilliant at it (like all instruments it is putting in the hours).  I got pretty advanced with the flute, and enjoyed being in wind ensembles, etc.  But unless you are really good, it is not really something you can whip out and start playing with mates.  Unless of course you are in Ireland in a pub.

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A 7 yr old would start on a 1/2 or 3/4 instrument.

 

What snowing said does make sense for guitar. We all played it for those reasons. 

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Casting my vote for the piano as well.  It's good for hand eye coordination, and learning to read music. Start with a small electric keyboard and headphones. Regular practice, a few minutes a day, is key.  It is easy to see and hear results quickly.

 

 

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