Preschoolers have a penchant for sound. They like it loud, or they love it soft, and they tend to turn most any available surface into an instrument of joy. Learning a musical instrument at a young age can help to develop math and pattern-recognition skills, according to the National Association for Music Education. Feeding that musical impulse in the under 48-inch set with a guitar is one of the best ways to cultivate that natural love of sound. Guitars don’t have to be expensive, or complicated, for the parent or the child.
When to Get a Guitar
Placing a guitar in the hands of a 3- or 4-year-old Pre-K student is an ideal way for them to begin to learn the craft with classes that also highlight movement, according to the Children’s Music Workshop. It’s been shown that parents who encourage the child to stick with classes and practice, while not pushing the child, can be key in creating a commitment in the child to learning and mastering the guitar. Committing to a 30- to 35-minute class over 8 to 10 weeks sets them up for success in future education and evolving their minds for more productive work.
Sound is a Choice
Randomly purchasing a string instrument isn’t sound advice. Know a bit before you make your first purchase.
There are three basic choices of sound when buying a guitar:
- Steel String Acoustic Guitars
- Nylon String Classical Guitars
- Electric Guitars
Professionals may recommend that you ease up to electric, as it takes a bit more work for preschoolers, however go with the sound your little one loves. They’ll be more inclined to stay interested if their plucking produces personal enjoyment.
While electric guitars are smaller than acoustics, they can easily weigh upward of 10 pounds. The best way to choose a size for your budding musician, however, is to let them hook the strap over their shoulder and strum a few haphazard cords. Children 5 and under can easily handle a 30” guitar, standard for little strummers, according to the Guitar Foundation of America.
Guitars are one of the more popular musical instruments for preschoolers, and they can be rather inexpensive. The average cost can run from around $20 and spill into the hundreds, particularly for electric guitars. Picking up a guitar from a thrift store or garage sale can cause some frustration. Make sure it is tuned properly by a professional before your beginner strummer picks it up for serious play.