Best approach to introduce my 3.5 year old to music?

Raj Shetty said: Sep 8, 2018
 Piano, Guitar, Violin
1 posts

First to provide a background, we live in Dallas, Texas. I think that my 3.5 year old daughter does seem to love music and songs. I, as a parent, do believe that she has a singing voice. But I assume, every parent thinks that way about their kid, until an expert brings us from the fantasy land back to reality. :)

I would like to get a perspective from the experts/teachers here on the best way to introduce learning music to my daughter. I would like her to sing and learn an instrument or two, depending on where her passion lies. How can we have her evaluated on her music learning aptitude, so that we get her on the right path? Should we join a church that has a music program?

This is my first day and post on Suzuki association, so I am not sure if the above post is an appropriate post for this forum.

Joanne Shannon said: Sep 10, 2018
Joanne Shannon
Suzuki Association Member
Los Angeles, CA
140 posts

Raj Shetty

Here in the Suzuki world we don’t usually evaluate a child for music aptitude. Our philosophy is “Every Child Can” believing with the right environment and support a child can learn music no matter what their 3 year old abilities. I would suggest to you that you sing with her, take her to children’s concerts, play music recordings for her, and find a Suzuki teacher who will advise you.

Kurt Meisenbach said: Sep 10, 2018
Kurt Meisenbach
Suzuki Association Member
Viola, Violin
Plano, TX
45 posts

Joanne’s comment is wise and relevant. At your daughter’s age the more important element of her learning is exposure to different kinds of music. Do you have CD’s at home that she can listen to? As soon as she is ready, show her how to load and play her favorite CD’s, then observe which ones she likes the most. Ask her why she likes them. The answer doesn’t matter. Asking the question can cause the understanding and awareness to go deeper in your child’s mind.

I grew up in a house with lots of records that I played constantly. My parents loved classical music and I had access to a wide range of classical and popular recordings. My early music explorations were largely self-directed. Your daughter may enjoy doing the same, given the opportunity.

If you can afford it, get the Baby Einstein series—Baby Bach, Baby Mozart, baby Beethoven. They are wonderful adventures for the young mind.

In my experience, at your daughter’s age, the thing to look for is interest, not “talent.” If your child is interested and has the opportunity to learn, then she will develop what we call talent—the ability to do something well.

By the way, I don’t do student auditions, but I do like to meet the parents before lessons begin so that we can talk about the learning process and get ready for lessons. You sound like the kind of parent that would be interesting to meet with.

Alina Kirshon-Goldman said: Sep 10, 2018
Alina Kirshon-Goldman
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Voice, Viola
Herndon, VA
8 posts

There is a pre-twinkle Suzuki program, Dalcroze Eurhythmics, Harmony road, Kindermusik, just choose one that is in your area. In some cases, children can start learning an instrument as young as 3.5-4 years old. When you take your child to a concert, try to choose age appropriate program. Once I took my three kids to National Symphony, and my 5 years old son fell asleep despite the fact that he is an experienced concert goer. He saw a full production of Verdi’s Aida and didn’t fall asleep.

Alina Kirshon-Goldman

Joanne Shannon said: Sep 11, 2018
Joanne Shannon
Suzuki Association Member
Los Angeles, CA
140 posts

In addition, you may want to include some good jazz albums (Joey Alexander, Bill Evans, Miles Davis, John Coltrane) as before age 4 is the development time for perfect pitch.

Margaret Watts Romney said: Sep 18, 2018
Margaret Watts Romney
Suzuki Association Member
Longmont, CO
21 posts

If you can find a Suzuki Early Childhood Education Program in your area, it is the perfect start for a Suzuki music education. The parent education, sensitivity to a child’s development, and immersion in a caring community are all remarkable. There is an in depth look at SECE on the Building Noble Hearts Podcast episode, “Skills I didn’t know my child had.” Enjoy!!

Laura Thiele said: Sep 28, 2018
Laura ThielePiano
Henderson, NV
1 posts

Sharing music with your child by playing CDs, singing, and attending musical programs all serve as wonderful learning experiences that nurture a young child’s ear and sensitivity to music. Also, many communities offer Early Childhood music programs such as Musikgarten, which offers an excellent sequential curriculum of Parent-and-Me classes for infants, toddlers and young children.

In my piano studio, lessons can begin as early as age three-and-a-half or four. Suzuki teachers are trained in a nurturing approach that aims at encouraging, cultivating and developing the unique natural ability and potential of EVERY child. Consider looking for a Suzuki teacher in your area and scheduling an initial parent conference.

Laura Thiele
Henderson, NV

Edward said: Sep 28, 2018
Edward Obermueller
Suzuki Association Member
Morris Plains, NJ
66 posts

Do lots of music listening! Get Suzuki Book One CD (or download it), that will give her a head start.

Here’s a little fun reminder: Listening Counts!

Happy practicing,

Free Guide: Five Ways To Motivate Your Kids To Practice

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