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Music Lessons: Age Specific Tips

Giving children meaningful & regular exposure to pitch from birth to age 6 is shown to have a profound impact on a persons lifelong ear for music and pitch.

Even children in the womb should be exposed to music and as soon as they’re born, you can do all kinds of musical activities and routines. So the short answer is no, your child is not too young for music lessons. You can start right now, no matter how old your kid is, though obviously their age will change how and where you start.

Most of the printable curriculum and materials in the program are designed for kids 3 and up, so if you’re wondering when you can really jump into the curriculum full-force, wait until your child is 3-4 years old.


Our Age Specific Help Guide (Ages 0-12) is jam-packed with tips on getting started with Music Lessons for your Child!

Music Lessons with Infants (Ages 0-1)

Even before babies are born, you can begin developing their love of music by playing classical music for mommy. Use headphones or play music near mommy’s belly to make sure they’re born into a musical environment.

Prodigies Curriculum to Use with Infants

If you’re enrolled in Prodigies, we recommend using Totigies & Playtime Prodigies with your infants!

Totigies is a Solfege rich listening series to help prime prenatal babies and infants for a life full of music. Totigies has a lullaby feel and is full of soothing and simple tracks for babies. As babies grow up, hand-signing and singing along with these tracks will provide meaningful exposure to pitch, and serve as a great introduction to the Prodigies method.

Then in Playtime Prodigies, we have fun and easy music lessons that infants will enjoy watching! These simple videos give children a chance to sing, hand-sign and play along with simple bell songs and fun rhythm exercises.

Instruments We Recommend for Babies & Infants

For infants, any kind of music makers (rattles, shakers, etc.) will help infants practice cause and effect. You’ll be delighted to watch they’re reactions as they explore the sounds all around them.

Beyond that, the C Major Deskbells are a great instrument for infants, so long as there’s some parent supervision. We kept a few around the house–a few on the changing table, a few in the kitchen, and some in her bedroom. We played the same bells during the same times, to help her differentiate the sound of each note and make changing time more fun! And who doesn’t love a good dinner bell, am I right?

The Deskbells are durable and easy to play and they allow infants & toddlers to receive meaningful and memorable play with pitch during their critical period for auditory development. You can play the bells with your baby and encourage him or her to sing and play along..

Key Concepts to Focus on with Infants

With infants and toddlers, you want to focus on giving them three types of musical exposure.

Free Play

All kids learn through play, and simply having musical instruments & activities around the home or classroom is the first step to activating your child’s sense for musical wonder

Meaningful Exposure to Individual Notes

This is the important and powerful idea of letting children explore one note at a time with bells, Boomwhackers or other instruments that let you focus on a single note. This is a foundational element of all Prodigies materials, especially for young kids.

High Information Music

Letting kids listen to complicated music (jazz, classical, north Indian, improv, etc.) will help expand their idea for what’s possible for music. For a great High Information Music app, check out Nuryl.

Music Lessons with Toddlers (Ages 1-3)

From Ages 1-3, toddlers are incredibly receptive to learning about the language of music. They learn to clap, stomp, sing, play finger games & their vocabulary will explode given a lot of musical exposure. Here you can learn more about starting music lessons with kids this young and how using Prodigies can help!

Where to Start with my Toddler: Playtime & Preschool Prodigies

If you’re looking for a screen-free listening activity to get started, drop by Totigies! Totigies is a Solfege rich listening series and is full of soothing and simple tracks for babies and toddlers. As babies grow up, hand-signing and singing along with these tracks will provide meaningful exposure to pitch, and serve as a great introduction to the Prodigies method.

Then, when you’re ready for video lessons, jump into Playtime Prodigies, where we focus on easy and instrument free practice.

We’ve also heard of 2 year old baby geniuses playing through some of our Preschool Prodigies and PsP Melodies lessons. If you’re excited and want to jump in with younger kids, these are good places to check out.

In both Playtime and Preschool Prodigies, we have fun and easy music lessons that your child will enjoy watching!

Instruments We Recommend for Babies and Toddlers

Shop for Babies & Toddlers

Our Deskbells are durable and easy to play and allow toddlers to receive meaningful and memorable play with pitch during their critical period for auditory development.

Toddlers are also ready to rock out on percussion of all kinds — from bongos to floor drums and more. This is a great time for kids to explore all kinds of musical sounds and instruments.

Key Concepts to Focus on for Ages 1-3

With infants and toddlers, you want to focus on giving them three types of musical exposure.

Free Play

All kids learn through play, and simply having musical instruments & activities around the home or classroom is the first step to activating your child’s sense for musical wonder.

Meaningful Exposure to Individual Notes

This is the important and powerful idea of letting children explore one note at a time with bells, Boomwhackers or other instruments that let you focus on a single note. This is what Prodigies excels at, especially for young kids.

High Information Music

Letting kids listen to complicated music (jazz, classical, north Indian, improv, etc) will help expand their idea for what’s possible for music. For a great High Information Music app, check out Nuryl.

Singing, Composing & Improvising

Once kids start becoming more verbal, you can do A TON of work by just singing different songs, melodies, rhymes and folk songs.

At 2 and a half, our daughter just sings about EVERYTHING she’s doing. Painting, cooking in her kitchen, getting dressed – – she sings about everything.

At this age, attention spans are super short. Thankfully, you can sing about pretty much anything, so it can happen more regularly throughout the day.

We do our best to model this by parodying our favorite songs with funny things happening at home. We sing about brushing our teeth, getting dressed, going for walks – – all the best stuff!


For more suggestions and information about meaningful play with pitch and about the formative years of musical development, check out our FREE Training!

Our BRAND-NEW & FREE video training that will crash course you on…

  • helping your kids sing in tune
  • teaching your kids steady beat & rhythm
  • challenging your kids with listening games
  • developing your kids life-long sense of pitch
  • the benefits of high information music
  • how to use the Solfege Hand-Signs
  • top apps for young musicians
  • and much more!

It’s 40 minutes of our best methods, strategies and resources and it’s TOTALLY FREE! To follow up the the training, you’ll receive an AMAZING outline of all important points, a checklist of activities, printable posters, an audio version AND a certificate of completion! You’ll also unlock a replay that you can watch at anytime and we promise you’ll leave the training feeling ready to jumpstart your child’s music education!

Music Lessons with Preschoolers (Ages 3-6)

This is the age where kids can really start working through curriculum workbooks, songbooks & video lessons to greater effect.

Shop for Preschoolers

Where to Start with my Preschooler

Whatever kind of set up you go with, keep in mind that children at this age (3-6) are prime for what we call “meaningful and memorable play with individual notes.” Kids at this age aren’t the best at reading music or playing the piano, but they have the unique skill of being able to develop perfect pitch in this time frame, so focus on the individual sounds and concepts in Preschool Prodigies and PsP Melodies to make the most of the 3-6 years.

At this age, you’ll be working mostly from Preschool Prodigies, but you’ll be able to mix in PsP Melodies lessons as you go to keep things fresh and also to help reinforce the hand-signs.

Anytime you’re instrument free, you’ll want to work from PsP Melodies. Then once your kids get the hang of the hand-signs, they’ll be able to use them wherever they might otherwise be using an instrument.

You’ll also be able to explore the Easy level of Holiday Prodigies and the early Chapters of Primary Prodigies. 

Finally, Performance Prodigies consists of a lot of 3 note songs in the treble clef. Many of the songs come straight from the Preschool Prodigies series, just in a more Orff styled format.

Instruments We Recommend for Preschoolers

We HIGHLY recommend C Major Deskbells for preschoolers! They’re durable and easy to play and allow kids to receive meaningful and memorable play with pitch during their critical period for auditory development.

We also recommend C Major resonators. This colorful and durable xylophone is a high quality mallet instrument for kids. The coordination it takes to play with a mallet is more difficult than the Deskbells, so it works as a slightly more challenging alternative and as an introduction to mallet technique

Preschoolers are also prime to start beginner piano lessons! You can follow along to most our lessons & sheet music on piano and we also recommend taking a look at our New series Piano Prodigies!

Visit the Prodigies Shop to learn more!


Key Concepts to Focus on for Ages 3-6

Beginner Instrumental Instruction with Deskbells, Mallets or Piano

Once your kids have some hand-eye coordination and a bit longer of an attention span, it’s time to start learning simple melodies and songs on the deskbells!

This is what Prodigies excels at, and you can use the Level 1A Courses suggested above to learn lots of popular preschool melodies.

Absolute/Perfect Pitch Development

Preschoolers are in the height of the critical period for auditory development which means you can teach them the amazing skill of perfect pitch.

You can do this with programs like Prodigies, the Taneda Method, Nuryl & more!

Solfege Hand Signs

The Solfege Hand Signs are another fundamental skill that will help develop your child’s ear and voice simultaneously.

The Curwen hand signs pair the Solfege syllables with easy to remember signs that help develop strong pitch recall.

We do A TON of hand-signing in Prodigies, and you can visit our Melodies collection for hand sign centric videos.

Free Play

All kids learn through play, and simply having musical instruments & activities around the home or classroom is the first step to activating your child’s sense for musical wonder

Meaningful Exposure to Individual Notes

This is the important and powerful idea of letting children explore one note at a time with bells, Boomwhackers or other instruments that let you focus on a single note. This is what Prodigies excels at, especially for young kids.

High Information Music

Letting kids listen to complicated music (jazz, classical, north Indian, improv, etc) will help expand their idea for what’s possible for music. For a great High Information Music app, check out Nuryl.

Singing, Composing & Improvising

Once kids start becoming more verbal, you can do A TON of work by just singing different songs, melodies, rhymes and folk songs.

At 2 and a half, our daughter just sings about EVERYTHING she’s doing. Painting, cooking in her kitchen, getting dressed – – she sings about everything.

At this age, attention spans are super short. Thankfully, you can sing about pretty much anything, so it can happen more regularly throughout the day.

We do our best to model this by parodying our favorite songs with funny things happening at home. We sing about brushing our teeth, getting dressed, going for walks – – all the best stuff!

Starting music lessons with school age kids is different than starting music lessons with preschoolers and toddlers and here we’ll share our best tips for getting started with school age kids.

Shop for School Age Kids (6-12)

If you’re enrolled in Prodigies and are looking to get started with school age kids, you’ll want to first determine how much experience they have already had with music.

If they’ve had some experience, start with our Primary series. This program dives into music theory and more difficult songs and performances.

Primary Prodigies is a more step-by-step curriculum. There’s a heavy emphasis on reading colorful yet properly notated sheet music in the treble clef, and slowly transitioning to black and white music, learning more musical vocabulary, understanding chordal and harmonic relationships through intervals, doing some basic I IV V analysis, ear-training and rhythmic dictations.

The format of  Primary Prodigies is longer and more advanced than the videos and sections in Preschool Prodigies. Instead of featuring just one video per section, most of the sections in Primary Prodigies have 2-6 video in them. The videos usually consist of one or two lesson videos, a song video, a color and a black and white play-along video, and sometimes listening games, related songs, or more advanced sidebars.

If they’re brand-new to music but a bit older (say a beginner at age 8 or 9), one option is to use Preschool Prodigies Chapter 8 to introduce them to the program and assess what they already know. Some older kids will take issue with the name “Preschool Prodigies”, but if you allow them to play a few of the more challenging songs, they may come to understand that as a beginner, they can still find meaning in this level of the program.

Like anything, it’s best to begin at the beginning. Explain to your learner that it’s best to begin pitch training and musical learning early, so some of the content is geared toward preschoolers. That doesn’t mean that older kids and even adults can’t learn something new and helpful. With almost 500 videos in the program, there’s bound to be something that meets your older child’s needs.

Performance Prodigies is a scrolling sheet music series, that allows students to practice singing, hand-signing and playing without Mr. Rob or Ms. Sam in the video. This series can be a great way to introduce the program to an older kid, who has outgrown the preschool-focused lessons.

You can also find a ton of Orff styled tracks Performance Prodigies that contain a bell part, a Boomwhacker or chord accompaniment, lyrics, hand-signs and simple percussion parts all at once. A lot of these songs are straight from Preschool or Primary Prodigies, so you can mix and match this videos as you see fit to get your whole class playing on different instruments.

Shop for School Age Kids

Prodigies offers a variety of series to help keep kids engaged in music. If your older learner doesn’t want to play the bells, Preschool, Primary and Performance can all be modified for the piano with a set of store bought or homemade chromanotes piano stick-ons.

If your learner doesn’t want to play the piano or the bells, we offer programs for singing & hand-signing, the recorder and the ukulele.

PsP Melodies consists of short exercises with the Solfege (Curwen) Hand-Signs. These are easy to use when you only have 3-5 minutes of time and/or don’t have any instruments at the ready. Melodies gives learners a chance to memorize Solfege, practice singing and familiarize themselves with the treble clef.

If your older child is ready to move onto other instruments, check out our  Recorder Prodigies series. Our step-by-step Recorder program is easy to pair with other popular recorder methods and curriculum. Each section has a lesson or two as well as 3 or more songs in both color and black and white. More Recorder lessons are on their way, and you can also use the G A B Performance Prodigies Tracks for lots more scrolling G A B music.

Finally, Holiday Prodigies is a video series that pairs with our Holiday Prodigies songbook. This series is a great tool for planning a successful and joyous (at home or in school) winter recital. The sheet music is complete with Boomwhacker chord accompaniments and contains some of the more difficult songs that we have in the curriculum (Fur Elise, Hanukkah oh Hanukkah, etc). These more difficult songs, even if out of season, are a great way to engage older learners with music.

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