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Is there a way to determine what musical instrument your child has the most aptitude for?

I'm thinking about starting music lessons for my oldest daughter. Ideally, I would like to start her on an instrument she has natural talent in. Being a non-musician I have no idea how to determine that! Is there some sort of test to determine whether a child is better suited for piano, strings, percussion ...?

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Asked by lovemydivas at 1:29 PM on Dec. 29, 2009 in General Parenting

Level 8 (257 Credits)
Answers (6)
  • In Queens, NY when I started junior high (middle School) a music teacher had us clap hands, sing a few notes and had us fill out a questionaire from grammar school as to classify the student for chorus, strings,or band.Unfortuantely, that was in 1978 and till this day I have yet to know of anyone else that has gone through this process.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:35 PM on Dec. 29, 2009

  • I don't know about that, but I know you can tell as a baby if your child is musically gifted. My niece was so alert to music as a baby, she really loved it. Now at 13 she plays 4 instruments.

    Answer by mompam at 1:45 PM on Dec. 29, 2009

  • When I joined band in 4th grade I wanted to play clarinet because I knew someone else who played it. We also had to give a second choice instrument, and then depending on how many spots they had for each instrument they assigned instruments. It was matter of choice, rather than what one had more aptitude for.

    I would take her to an instrument store and show her the various instruments and see which one appeals to her. The only restrictions I remember are they say, if they may need braces, a brass instrument isn't always suggested because it will be harder to play with braces on. Generally at that age there also tends to be "girl" and "boy " instruments (most boys don't want to play the flute, for example) because of typical boy and girl ideas about that stuff.

    Answer by Anonymous at 1:55 PM on Dec. 29, 2009

  • I was told I had perfect hands of violin. I was told to play it. I HATED it. I loved the bass clarinet.
    Dont just go off what talent she has ask her what she would like to try.
    My sister is very fond of the flute.

    Answer by Mrs.Owen86 at 2:00 PM on Dec. 29, 2009

  • Here is my advice (and I can play any instrument you give me within a week as long as it isn't a string instrument)...start with the piano. It gives you the basics. It teaches you how to read both the treble and bass cleft. It teaches how to read rhythms. There is little maintenance and cost unlike other instruments. And then when she has that down pretty good introduce her to other instruments and then let her decide. My first (after the piano) was the flute and it is still my baby to this day.

    Answer by purpleducky at 2:07 PM on Dec. 29, 2009

  • I minored in music in college and play several instruments. You really need to try instruments from each group to see where the aptitude lies.
    I started on clarinet, and I really sucked. It was too hard to blow enough wind through it. I switched to flute and did an awesome job. The blowing technique is different. I tried brass later on, but couldn't get a good buzz. My lips are too small. I also tried strings, but I'm too wimpy to push the strings firmly enough. I did well on piano. It's awesome that you want her to learn an instrument, just make sure she wants to also. You do not have to start on piano. It was the last instrument I learned.

    Answer by Pnukey at 8:46 PM on Dec. 29, 2009

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