Age guidelines for instrumental lessons

  At CMC, we believe that each child is unique – some are ready for private instrumental lessons at age 3 or 4, and some are not until they’re 7 or 8. What we do here at CMC is we schedule a FREE trial lesson with a teacher to determine your child’s readiness to start private lessons. In this trial lesson, the teacher would assess their attention span, if your child is ready and comfortable socially with the one-on-one interaction with the teacher, and if they are committed to practicing their instrument each day, even for 5 minutes to start with. We want to ensure each child has a positive experience from this type of learning environment.  


If your child has not expressed an interest in a specific instrument but has expressed great interest in playing an instrument, then the piano is good one to start off with. All the skills and note reading ability that your child will learn from learning the piano will be transferable to any instrument he/she will do in the future. The notes are well defined visually, and when you press a piano key, you have the immediate result of a nice sound, as opposed to the violin or cello, where it takes a lot of patience and practice to produce a good sound. Again, it depends on the child.


Some instruments, children simply should not start until later – for example, the larger wind and brass instruments, they need to be old enough have the breath support to produce a sound; for vocal lessons, their vocal chords need to be more developed, or they can actually damage them if they put strain on them at too young of an age. 


Please keep in mind each child is unique, and you may have a little Mozart in your child, which you'll never know unless you try a lesson. This is precisely is why we offer the first trial lesson free of charge, with absolutely no obligation. We want to give every child the opportunity to discover their musical talent. And if the teacher feels they're not quite ready, consider our Musical Preludes courses.


General Age Guidelines and Instrument Suitability:


3-5 year olds

  • Piano
  • Violin
  • Cello
  • Guitar (starting at the earliest age 4)
  • Recorder

6-8 year olds

  • All of the above, plus:
  • Viola

8 years of age and up

  • All of the above, plus:
  • Clarinet
  • Flute
  • Saxophone
  • Voice
  • Electric Guitar
  • Electric Bass
  • Drum kit

book a free trial lesson