If your kids have begun to show an interest in music, or you are trying to encourage them to take an interest, you’ve probably spent some time considering what instrument is best. While your child might think it would be cool to play the drums or jam out on the saxophone, this may be detrimental to your own peace of mind, since it will create a massive amount of clatter in the house. That’s not to say you should discourage them from playing these instruments if they desire (there are electronic drum kits that they could use with headphones), however, an excellent option is a digital piano (keyboard) that hardly takes up any space and could be used with headphones.
If you come from a traditional middle-class family, you may have grown up with a real piano in your living room. While real pianos sound amazing and bring an air of class to a space, they can also be a massive pain in the neck. Pianos are quite large, nearly impossible to move and need to be tuned by a professional from time to time. Therefore, even the maintenance costs can be a burden. If your parents are moving to a retirement home and offer to give you their piano, consider selling it on Craigslist and instead investing in a digital keyboard, which takes up much less space and never needs to be tuned. Piano and music lessons might be a great way to ignite a spark of inspiration; even if your kid is taking music class in school, finding a cool music teacher who can make learning fun can go a long way!
Another reason that a digital keyboard is a good option is that your child will be able to practice and mess around with music in their bedroom. If they had to play on a piano in a shared space, they might feel self-conscious about it. Furthermore, anyone who is a parent knows that often kids refuse to leave their rooms for long stints at a time. At least if there is a keyboard in their room, your child may actually be doing something creative, educational and productive rather than messing around on social media and playing violent video games.
Probably the best reason – convenience and logistics aside – to encourage your child to play the keyboard is the versatility of the instrument. The way a piano is designed – white and black keys – makes it easy to understand how scales work, with flats, sharps and semi-tones. Even if they wanted to transition to a different instrument eventually, a keyboard is the best tool for learning the fundamentals of music theory, harmony and composition. Often playing the bass line with the left hand and chords and melody on the right hand requires intense focus and the ability to multi-task. If your child is utilizing the sustain pedal and singing as well, its going to go a long way towards developing their mind and musical abilities.
So buy your kid a keyboard this autumn and see if they aren’t inspired. You might just have the next Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart living under your roof!