Quick Book Review–Musical Instruments for Children by Richard Crozier

I often get questions about starting kids with music. What age should I start? Should I have Junior learn the piano or something else? Why is progress on the guitar so much slower than the piano? What instrument should my kid play in band? I always attempt to answer these questions, but there is no one right answer. Every kid is different, and no one knows their kids better than parents. Teachers rely on input from parents about learning styles, personality traits, and the little difficulties of life that pop up.

For all the parents out there who are considering starting their kids along a musical journey, or are at a crossroads along this journey, Richard Crozier attempts to address many of the concerns we’ve come across. In Musical Instruments for Children, He considers some of the whys & hows of learning music in general, including choosing a teacher, practicing tips, the importance of good habits, and the traits of private and group lessons. After these introductory pages, he goes through instrument by instrument, addressing pros and cons of each. He covers everything from the oboe to the guitar to the harmonica, and yes, even the piano. The book looks at several instruments and compares various traits of each, including expense, ease of learning, and portability, to name a few.

Crozier spends a few pages on one of the most often overlooked instruments—the voice. The voice is a natural, free, built-in instrument that has unlimited potential. Musically speaking, one of the most important things you can encourage your kids to do is sing. Learning to sing helps internalize pitch and harmony. In fact, I’m thinking of taking some more voice lessons myself!

This book is a valuable tool in helping parents and kids decide just how to pursue music. Expensive piano lessons with a Juliard graduate are not the only option, and Musical Instruments for Children lays out some often overlooked—but still valid—options to explore music. Give it a look when you get a chance!

Aaron

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