Musical development for children?

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Andy H
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Musical development for children?

Post by Andy H » Sun Oct 02, 2005 8:15 am

Hi,

My three-year-old daughter is at the stage where I would like her to start "formally" learning music. She has done music-based activites at the playschool she attends, and seems interested. I do not necessarily want her to be constrained by classical training...

Where do I start? Anybody been down this road before me?

Thanks,

Andy.
A man could die of thirst - first to the bar and the last to get served....

aka Domino
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Post by aka Domino » Sun Oct 02, 2005 2:34 pm

My eldest started to learn violin with the Suzuki method and a rather strange teacher- not that all violin teachers are strange!!! She was 8 and it is a very intense system which whilst it does produce results it is only for the dedicated. Practice every day or else, grandparent's death not an excuse for missing a lesson, lots of parental imput ie being present at all lessons and supervising the practicing, take it on holiday and don't go away more than a few days anyway! you might guess we didn't last long - a year of bitter arguments about practicing didn't do our family life any good!

No.2 daughter is learning the clarinet - much more enjoyable experience. She started at 10 and has more amenable teacher who says things like if it is sunny in the school hols - go out and play. Do clarinet when it's raining! As we live in the Lake District some practicing gets done!!! This teacher whilst a stickler for correct technique, encourages all types of music including playing pop tunes and abhors old fuddy duddy type tunes that sometimes appear in books of music aimed at children.


From my experiences, I would suggest that at 3, it has to be fun and singing and rhythm practice are essential to later music ability. Drum sets are good fun at all ages and singing gets them used to hearing the notes and sequences. Having an 'ear' for music makes learning an instrument easier.

You could see if there are music or singing teachers who take young children or if there music centres or groups in your area that run music sessions for children.

Don't know if that helps at all.

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Andy H
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Post by Andy H » Sun Oct 02, 2005 5:51 pm

Domino,

Thanks, yes it does help. I was wondering about the Suzuki method, but one thing I do want is that music is fun for my daughter(s). My own earliest musical training was classical based and very rigid (piano); it was only when I took up the guitar that I enjoyed music. I still play, where many of my cousins who were classically trained have long given up. On the flip side, I know I could be better if I had kept up the classical techniques, but I don't have the time now.

Fortunately, both my three-year-old and my one-year-old have "musical ears" - both were able to pick up tunes from an early age. The one-year-old can't talk but does a great rendition of "This Old Man" (aka the Barney song) and Twinkle Twinkle. It is great to be able to connect with her by singing these tunes to her and have her sing them back.

I am keen to develop the girls' musical skills as I have got great pleasure from my (mediocre) musical abilities over the years, it is a great gift to have.

Andy.
A man could die of thirst - first to the bar and the last to get served....

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Post by aka Domino » Tue Oct 04, 2005 10:37 am

Me again.

I also asked my sister who is a primary school teacher as well as a music teacher. Her advice was that if you want a prodigy, then string tuition starts at 3, usually violin or cello and usually but not always with the suzuki technique. The most important thing is to get a good teacher who is used to teaching the very young.
She also said there are various private companies that run music sessions for pre-schoolage children such as JoJingles(not sure if that is spelt right) and where she is, the local education authority run a music service that delivers music sessions for nurseries and preschools. Whether they run where you are I don't know but the education authority may know if there is anything available.

Happy hunting!
Cheers
Domino
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Andy H
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Post by Andy H » Tue Oct 04, 2005 2:07 pm

Domino,

Thank you so much for your help. The pre-school my eldest is in runs weekly musical sessions by a company called "Gymboree", and another called "Silly Billy" - I guess this might be similar to the JoJingles you mention.

I should see if there are Suzuki teachers locally and find out more about that.

Prodigy??? Hopefully not of the "Firestarter" variety!!!

Andy.
A man could die of thirst - first to the bar and the last to get served....

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