When should my child start singing lessons?
When to start with individual lessons is mainly determined by how motivated the child is to learn and practice, and if it has any voice issues. A healthy child’s voice is flexible and versatile. Normally it has the same range as a lyric soprano and should have reasonably accurate pitch (total accuracy isn’t to be expected with children).
For some there is enough joy and teaching by singing in a choir. But if your child struggles with accurate pitch and/or only sings in the lower register because it doesn’t like, or find it difficult to sing high pitches – then we would recommend individual singing lessons. Because, this problem will only become worse without help and in the long term it can result in more severe voice disorders. The reason for this is often a result of inflexible use of the voice and too much use of the lower register. Which in turn often happens because adults sing in their low register and ask the children to copy and sing loudly in the same register – which children don’t really have the physical preconditions to do.
In such cases as this, we would recommend to start with singing lessons immediately, possibly in collaboration with a speech therapist if necessary. Depending on the child’s background and environment etc. this will commonly be around pre-school, school age (4-6 years) at the earliest.
In any other cases we would recommend starting some time before the age of 10 when voice mutation may begin. During the mutation period, the voice is more fragile and they should take extra care. But a better foundation before this can help with the voice’s transition from a child’s voice to an adult voice, especially for boys.