The initial phone consultation we have with parents usually includes the question “is my child too young to begin playing?” and honestly - how long is a piece of string?!
Seriously though, besides being an excellent question, drum lessons for kids should depend on a multitude of things. Every child has their own unique attention span, as well as a place on the hue of personal enthusiasm for different activities. Perth Drum Lessons teaches kids down to the age of five and interestingly, none of them up until the age of 10 have weekly lessons longer than half an hour. This really indicates that although attention spans differ at this age, they all seem to fit into the ‘short’ variety! As well as this, kids (despite being mental sponges) can only absorb so much information in one half hour drum lesson. Therefore, drum lessons for kids should be down to:
a) attention span
b) personal interest, and
Sometimes whilst learning new topics or practising newly taught material, kids will drift into another dimen… another dim… do you play Fortnite?
This is an everyday occurrence when teaching - going off topic and getting a little distracted. Drum lessons for kids can often be frustrating, but truly rewarding. There are kids that have a relatively poor attention span but absorb the material well and others that try their hardest but take a little longer to learn said material. As their parent or guardian, ask yourself “how are they doing at school? Do the teachers mention habits of distraction?” The child’s school behaviour will most often reflect their behaviour throughout drum lessons and general practice routines.
On the other hand, drum lessons for kids with poor attention habits can actually improve school performance. It is often a way to release stress, improve concentration and excel numeracy capabilities, along with other benefits. Perth Drum Lessons has a few young students with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and from as little as four lessons, we’ve seen a huge improvement in concentration - not only in lessons, but in their home and schooling life too.
This is truly a simple one. Perth Drum Lessons has had its fair share of students come through based on an interest from their parents. Many of these students have gone on to love the instrument and continue playing, whilst others have quit out of frustration. This is because the parent feels their child needs to learn an instrument for development purposes, or the parent has an active interest in the instrument itself and wants this reflected on the child.
As their parent or guardian, ensure they’re keen to have a go, or they’re incredibly enthusiastic to pursue the hobby. Drum lessons for kids should focus on them completely, because if they aren’t personally interested in the instrument, they will burn out. However, they may be keen to learn something else such as guitar, keyboards, bass, or any of the other hundreds of fantastic instruments in the World - why not the hurdy gurdy?
Age is really no obstacle, however age itself can restrict drum lessons for kids. This includes the height of the child. Honestly, some five year olds have arrived at Perth Drum Lessons and can’t even reach the bass and hi-hat pedals, even with the seat at the lowest setting!
Age also corresponds and correlates with intellectual development - though not all the time, as there are some truly gifted and talented children out there. Does that make them any more or less capable to learn drums? Certainly not! The problem here is basic understandings of phrases, terms and vocabulary. What they’ve learnt at school and given their intelligence at such a young age, learning theoretically could simply confuse them.
As a parent or guardian, it may be best to evaluate where your child is in their learning development before signing up for long-term drum lessons, as learning the drums from too young an age can be like putting a year 7 primary school graduate into first-year university. Obviously, this is not always the case! Check out Igor Falecki, a child prodigy drummer who began playing between ages 2 and 3. This is him at 15!
There are always questions to whether drum lessons for kids is a good idea, especially for those up to ages 6 to 7. Luckily, the above criteria, along with the previous Perth Drum Lessons blog post on when to buy your first drum kit, can assist this decision.
If you’re still unsure, or have further queries, resident drum teacher Marcus Davidson is always happy for a chat on 0424 681 483 or email@example.com.
Cheers and happy drumming!