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I previously wrote about some tips for preparing to play the violin for children – things you can do before your child actually starts playing the instrument. I wanted to follow up this post with some ideas about what age to start violin lessons!
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If you ask any violin teacher, they will usually answer, “It depends.” But it is no different here. It depends!
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After teaching violin to beginning students for almost 20 years, there are a few indicators I look to see if a child is ready. Obviously, this is for violin and other string students. I know piano teachers, for example, often start kids as they get older, so I can only talk to young strings.
Before accepting any student, I always do a trial class to see if it will be a good fit, and also if the child is ready to go into it. See if your child is ready to start playing the violin. (I start when the violin starts. It’s not anything fancy, but it has everything you need and it’s expensive.) I hope they know the age to start violin lessons. It will help you decide!
This post about how old to start violin is linked, but all opinions are 100% my own. This means that if you buy from my link, I get a small commission, but your price doesn’t change.
While it is possible to teach a child who has little interest, it is rarely fun. When a child has a little self-motivation and interest, it is easier to move forward.
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It should be noted that playing the violin is difficult. Most kids will get frustrated, “hate it,” and want to quit at some point. This does not mean that they should (although sometimes they do). But someone’s son
Of course, it’s not necessary to have a child who likes music more than anything else (see What I Don’t See #3 below). Still, to help your child develop, it helps to play music in your home, sing songs, and develop a general interest in music through familiarity. You will be surprised that it helps.
Although some teachers expect children to be quiet and listen for 30 minutes, I never expect my elementary students to concentrate for more than 10 minutes. Age wise, this is developmentally appropriate, and it’s amazing how much progress students can make with ten consistent minutes and dedicated daily practice.
Obviously this time increases as they progress and as they strengthen their body, but 10 minutes is enough in the beginning when you decide to start violin.
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This isn’t a hard and fast rule, but it does serve as a good litmus test to see if your child can hold a pencil properly. Your child will be using many of these small muscle groups to hold the bow and play notes, so it helps if they can do this. (Too much, I have a favorite pencil… and colored pencils, for that matter!)
If you’re wondering what age to start cello lessons, in our experience, it’s much younger than violin. The cello is a larger instrument that requires less modern skill than the violin. My son and I play the cello, we started when he was about 4.5 (like 3.75 and my two children play the violin). This is where he can handle the big tools and press his fingers on the hard strings.
Again, this is not very important as pitch matching is actually something I work on with elementary students. However, it is always helpful if a child has a basic understanding of high and low notes and can match basic sounds.
Especially in the Suzuki method that relies on listening to notes and music, it is really useful when a child can distinguish between different notes when starting the violin for children. It is even more helpful if your child is familiar with listening and/or singing the songs in Suzuki Book 1.
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Learning to play the violin is fun, but also complicated. Especially in the first weeks and months, it will be important for the new student to do the same thing over and over again because it is not wise to make progress until he is calm. It requires patience and yes, following the teacher’s instructions.
Toddlers are notorious for questioning directions. Although this happens to other children, in fact, many children will continue to resist instruction and develop a great need to run before starting equipment. The child should be willing to listen and generally agree to follow instructions. It is important that these early skills are not misused, so the child must be ready to receive feedback and be ready and patient to follow these instructions.
There are some things that parents sometimes ask that I don’t think have anything to do with a violin student’s early success. Some of these are:
While I know this may be important for other instruments (eg piano), it is not necessary for most beginning players. I teach the mixed Suzuki method, which includes a lot of ear training. Students often learn by listening to music for long periods of time, however, so reading ability is not necessary.
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If your child can read, you can start it and read some notes (this is my favorite simple and straightforward book for teaching write and read I really like music stand), but I can say that it is done separately from the instrument. will do.
In fact, children don’t have much of an understanding of what most apps require until they start playing them. I firmly believe that a child can succeed in playing the violin even if it is not something they have chosen for themselves.
Music is like anything else – it takes a lot of practice. Most children who start playing the violin will not become professional musicians. And that’s great!
Just because your child isn’t the next Mozart doesn’t mean serious music lessons aren’t worth it. Your child can still learn a lot and have a lot of fun even if he doesn’t want to be a member of the National Symphony.
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In fact, there is no age that is too old to start playing the violin. Different students will do well at different times. However, in general, the best age for my students to start playing the violin is between the ages of 5-7. I have started students for about three years, including my two older children. However, teaching violin to children will require a lot of care and support for each practice session. So unless a parent is willing to make a big effort, I would not recommend starting this child.
Some 4-year-olds can learn and follow behavioral instructions, but they will often need good guidance.
One of the biggest advantages of being young is that children have great ears and pick up sounds very easily.
The reason the Suzuki method works so well with children is because they are trained to hear and imitate sounds. Consider language acquisition, a large part of childhood. Children are in listening and repeating mode, which translates well to the violin.
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Children are very persuasive and want to have fun. They want to do well and are interested in creating sound. It also has some benefits for ear development at a young age – it lays a great foundation for a lifetime of music.
I have started students at 8, 10, 15, and even older! Learning the violin is not a hobby that has limited time.
Getting older also has different benefits. An older child, in particular, will be able to listen and concentrate for a long time. They also want to acquire the physical aspects and fine motor skills associated with the violin more easily. The violin needs a lot of compromises! Between holding a bow, holding a violin, and posture, to say nothing of using the fingers and bow correctly, it’s a lot for a child (or anyone).
And an older child knows his body well and is often able to understand the physical aspects of the device easily. An older student will also be able to progress to reading music very quickly, although I still prefer to start without music at the beginning so that all other skills can be completed without further input.
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With all that said, students can really benefit from playing.
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