The Ideal Age for Taking Piano Lessons
Because of the many benefits of learning the piano, most parents want their children to take piano lessons. The question many parents have is: At what age should I enroll my child in a piano class? Because children's brains are developing at a young age, learning while young helps a child retain knowledge throughout their adult life. Most experts agree that a child should begin piano lessons when they are quite young. Some children have taken lessons as young as four years of age. Whether your child is ready for piano lessons all depends on if they have the ability to participate.
The following are a few factors that a parent should consider when planning to enroll their child in a piano class:
1. You have to make sure your child can meet the mental requirements to sit through a piano lesson.
Piano lessons can be 15 minutes, 30 minutes, or one hour, depending on the teacher's instructional methods. Can your child sit through a piano lesson or will he or she fidget and get up and walk away from the piano? Your child must be able to sit quietly. As well, can your child focus on one task for a specified length of time? That is, can he or she sit, listen, and follow directions? Or, does your child get frustrated quickly and have temper tantrums?
2. Piano lessons involve a minimal level of reading skills.
A pre reading level such as the ability to distinguish between shapes is necessary. As well, your child should know the basics of the alphabet and know numbers. A child in pre-school/kindergarten should have these basic reading skills.
3. When learning to play the piano, one must be able to understand and follow directions given by the teacher.
Does your child have good listening skills and follow directions when given a set of instructions?
4. Does your child show any interest in learning the piano?
A child that is resistant may not be ready. Don't force your child as it will only cause him or her to resent the lessons. Help your child understand the benefits of taking lessons and that it is fun.
Enrolling your child in a piano class will involve practice at home. Most experts feel that a child will not successfully practice by themselves at home until they are the age of 8 or 9. This means that a parent will have to site with them during their practice with their child. It is important to use positive reinforcement techniques, such as praising the child when he or she does well. If they make a mistake, be positive about the importance of practice. Never harshly criticize a child for making a mistake. The child will just start to resent playing the piano and will eventually want to quit.
As well, make music a part of home life so that your child will gain appreciation for music. Providing your child with piano lessons is an exciting moment in a parent's life. It signifies your child is growing and learning new things.
In order to ensure your child continues with piano lessons, be patient, supportive, and research a piano teacher to make sure your child is getting the best instruction.