Children can benefit from learning to play music from a very young age. In fact, children from as young as 2 are able to learn to use simple woodwind instruments, with many options made specifically for small hands!
As infants recognise a melody before they can understand the words, you can use musical instruments to teach them how to keep time and produce simple beats and rhythms. This can also be achieved by clapping and tapping different objects around the home if they are not quite old enough to use an instrument.
One of the main benefits of learning to play a musical instrument is that music stimulates the parts of the brain which are related to reading and maths, which can really help pre-school children to start preparing for these core subjects.
Learning to play a musical instrument has been shown to help with the development of motor skills too, particularly hand-eye coordination, and can also increase the ability to store and recall audio information.
Memory development is another key benefit, as reciting songs and music can improve a child’s long and short term memory, which also helps with their overall ability to learn and retain information.
Learning a musical instrument is fantastic for a child’s emotional and social development too, as it gives them a great way to express themselves. Through participating in a music group, children will learn to relate to others, become team players, and can also benefit from an increase in confidence and self-discipline.
All musical instruments come with their own history, and this information can be valuable when teaching children about different cultures and traditions, plus it provides a fantastic opportunity to introduce them to different types of music, such as folk and jazz.
By giving your child access to a musical instrument from a young age, they can gain these key benefits whilst having fun and learning a valuable new skill.
Sasha Davison is Marketing Manager at Clarke Tinwhistle (www.clarketinwhistle.com), creators of the original tin whistle which has been the choice of beginners and professional musicians alike for over 170 years.