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Flute for a 8 year old?

(19 Posts)
lexie01 Mon 04-Oct-10 21:24:44

My DD1 is in Yr3. She plays the recorder but does not start 'proper' musical instrument lessons until Yr4. It is her birthday soon (she will be 8) and she has been asking for a flute (or clarinet!). I don't mind paying for extra lessons outside school but I don't know if she may be too young to really master the flute (or clarinet). I played the clarinet for a few years but did not start until I was 11. Any thoughts....

meltedmarsbars Mon 04-Oct-10 21:26:31

It is normal to start on a fife when you want to learn the flute - its like a sideways recorder.

My dd1 did fife for a year or so and plays flute now.

bnm Mon 04-Oct-10 21:27:49

Now or later is fine depends on other activities as it will not be too late if you wait a few years.

activate Mon 04-Oct-10 21:31:17

Clarinet depends on her teeth and whether she has front adult teeth fully established

Take her to a music store to try out different istruments and let her discover hers would be my advice

pinkthechaffinch Mon 04-Oct-10 21:35:32

I started flute lessons when I was 8, after learning the recorder for a year. twas absolutely fine.

pinkthechaffinch Mon 04-Oct-10 21:36:55

She will be to young to master it! it takes a while, and regular practise. i remember it took me at least a few weeks to get the breathing technique right to produce a clear note.

Riponite Mon 04-Oct-10 21:38:18

Our piano teacher, who teaches flute as well, says you need all your second teeth in before you start the flute.

meltedmarsbars Mon 04-Oct-10 21:42:10

Surely by 8 you have your front teeth?

The flute problem with very young children is that it's too long for them to reach the end when they hold it up!

lexie01 Mon 04-Oct-10 21:44:05

Thanks everyone. I hadn't even thought about teeth!! All of her main front teeth are her 2nd ones but she certainly has a few milk teeth left. I like the idea of taking her to a music store to try out a few instruments. Will google ones in the area.

I have heard that there is a sort of 'curved' flute (?) that has been developed for children. Has anyone ever heard of it? Sorry to sound so vague!

cat64 Mon 04-Oct-10 21:47:15

Message withdrawn

meltedmarsbars Mon 04-Oct-10 21:48:26

You can usually hire instruments from larger music shops or from your LEA music dept.

meltedmarsbars Mon 04-Oct-10 21:49:29

curved flute - looks wierd!!

user1477323940 Mon 24-Oct-16 18:03:59

Hello All,

I am a professional flutist and flute teacher and I have started children on the flute as young as seven years old. In actuality, it depends on the particular child, both in terms of maturity and physical capability. Some children are simply able to grasp the concept of the flute more easily than others. There are curved headjoint-flutes (making the flute shorter, into a candy cane-shape) for small children, which enables them to reach the keys and manipulate the flute more easily. With any instrument, once a child realises that learning to play properly is a bit of hard work rather than the easy fun it appears when they watch accomplished players, that's when their maturity level kicks in. Some youngsters lose interest, others step up to the mark. I taught a 7-year old boy two years ago who steamed through his first tutorial books, enjoying the challenge of it all each week. Alternatively, I taught a small-framed 7-year old girl last year who, although she understood what was required and tried hard, never could make a proper sound, even after five months of private lessons. I eventually went to the recorder with her so that she could at least play simple tunes. I recommend that if your child would like to try the flute that you rent an instrument and give private lessons a good 4-6 months to take hold. Your teacher can keep you updated on progress, and your child will surely let you know how they feel about their lessons. smile

Ferguson Fri 28-Oct-16 19:00:37

Depending on what sorts of music she prefers, there could possibly be more scope with clarinet as against flute - clarinet is louder and can tackle a wider range of ensembles and genres compared to flute, which is quieter and rather more 'specialised' .

But either would be well worth learning. If she has lessons via school or the county music service, it MAY be possible to purchase an instrument at an 'educational' rate, without paying VAT.

Lules Fri 28-Oct-16 19:05:15

I think the OP's child will definitely be old enough to play the flute now...!

SavoyCabbage Fri 28-Oct-16 19:11:00

She will be hanging round bus -stops and rolling her eyes at everything by now.

gillybeanz Fri 28-Oct-16 19:11:30

I would advise asking your teacher to go with you to try different models as they vary considerably.
Sometimes you can save by having a better quality head joint to the body.
Either that or ask your LA music centre if they do a hire scheme, whilst she gets started.

The second teeth being through is a myth.
Nothing detrimental has ever been proven, and there is always ongoing research if you look.
Some teachers my dh included like to wait for second teeth to come through, but it isn't necessary for any instrument.
You can find that embouchure needs to be adjusted if they need a brace when older, this can set them back quite a bit, depending on the type and fit.

gillybeanz Fri 28-Oct-16 19:12:36

Bloody hell, another Zombie. grin

ErrolTheDragon Fri 28-Oct-16 19:18:53

My DD learned flute from yr 3. The first thing to decide whether to to flute or clarinet is if she can get a sound out of the mouthpiece - some people just can't!

Even though she's small she (just) managed without the curved thing, but the leverage holding a metal tube horizontal is quite large so at first I had to gently support the end for her when she practiced. grin

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