Is your child interested in learning an instrument?
Although kids get excited about all kinds of instruments as they explore music, it can be helpful to choose an easier “first instrument” to begin to learn to play. That way, the process is rewarding sooner and it builds confidence in their ability to learn.
Here are 8 reasons why a ukulele can be a good first choice for any child interested in rocking out on a stringed instrument:
The fretboard is easy to see and the strings are not hard to hold down.
The ukulele has 4 strings and most common chords are formed from very easy combinations of finger positions.
Most ukulele songbooks are written in tablature – an easy-to-read graph that shows you where to place your fingers.
By following the tablature, you can learn many of your favorite songs within hours.
A ukulele is small and lightweight – easy to take out to practice or perform for others.
A ukulele can easily play the chords to a song while a parent, sibling or other friends clap along or play the beat on a simple percussion instrument like a tambourine or shaker.
A ukulele can easily play the chords to a song while a parent, sibling or other friend play the same song on guitar for an instant musical duet!
Kids Play Ukuleles
It’s easy to be inspired to play when you see young children really shining as they master the basics of this easy instrument. Take a look at this 8 year old sharing one of his favorite songs at a ukulele festival or check out our Hawaiian video page that features a variety of ukulele players – many of them under 10 years old!
Hawaii videos on Multicultral Kids Music Vids
Learn With Your Child
A ukulele is a great first instrument for an adult as well. And you can give your child a real gift by learning along with them. They can see you try and fail, try and succeed and understand what it means to have patience and to take the time to learn and grow at a new skill.
Showing a child how everyone struggles with learning new things and eventually succeeds is a powerful life lesson that will resonate in every area of their life.
Don’t Buy The Cheapest Ukulele
Although a good ukulele is not very expensive, make sure you buy one that sounds good to your ears and has sturdy tuning pegs (the little knobs at the top of the fretboard). Cheaper ukuleles will not hold their tuning and can be incredibly frustrating to play. It’s hard for a child or any new learner to be getting their part right while the uke slips out of tune and sounds like it’s playing the wrong chords.
You can opt to buy from a local music store where the staff can show you several options and hopefully play them for you. Or you can buy online after checking customer reviews. Look for a model that fits your budget but also gets good reviews from first time players.
Resources And Related Musical Fun
Ukulele Coloring Page from DARIA MUSIC
The Ukulele – 4 Strings and Jumping Fleas!
Make Your Own Pu’ili – Hawaiian Rhythm Sticks
“Beach In A Bottle” Rattle
Playing River Rocks As An Instrument – Hawaiian `ili`ile