Many parents are often concerned about placing their children into music lessons at a young age due to the fact that they are unable to make their own decisions about playing an instrument. This is a normal parenting concern, but music lessons aren't just about learning how to play an instrument, its about developing a relationship with music at a young age.
Research shows that from birth to age nine is the prime age for developing a musical sensibility within children. Within this age stretch the parts of the brain associated with processing and understanding music are in the prime stages of development.
- Of course a parent should not enroll a 2 month old into music lessons, but immersing the baby into a musical environment by singing or dancing will help with musical sensibility.
- Once a child is 3 a parent can then choose to enroll their child into music lessons. These lessons would be used to further develop skills like identifying a beat in music, or identifying a melody, rather than just learning how to play a single instrument. If a parent is still unsure about 3 still being to young they should voice their expectations and goals to the music teacher.
- By age 5 a child can start formalized lessons. These lessons would not be about becoming a great performer, but more about advancing a child's understanding of music. Piano is the most common instrument played at this age since it is a foundation to most music education.
A wonderful example of a young pianist is Anke Chen. At age 6 she has mastered the piano.
Whether your child is a baby or 7 years old, introducing them to music at a young age is never a bad idea. What truly matters is that your kid is having fun and advancing their musical understanding.