Music To Keep Kids Learning Over The Summer
Free online lessons introduce kids to joys of the ocarina
By Laura Yeh
Summer is here and parents are looking for ways to keep their kids entertained, engaged and learning. Many families will enroll children in music lessons over the summer, but there are other economical ways to introduce kids to the joy of playing an instrument.
I teach violin at the St. Louis School of music and I know that not all families have the time, resources and or interest to devote to private instruction and buying or renting a violin, cello or piano. For these families, I have found the ocarina is a great instrument to introduce kids to music. It is small enough to fit in a pocket, inexpensive and easy to play. Even young kids can pick out simple tunes quickly through online lessons or method books.
The ocarina is also small enough for kids to take it with them wherever they go, to the park, pool or on vacation. And it has a pleasant sound, even in the hands of a beginner.
Ocarinas belong to a class of instruments called vessel flutes that developed in various ancient cultures around the world. They are usually made of clay or plastic and played by blowing with various degrees of pressure into the ocarina and changing the pitch by fingering holes in the instrument.
New this summer, our company STL Ocarina is offering free online music lessons to anyone who purchases a 12-hole ocarina. The 12-hole ocarinas use a linear fingering system, making them easy for beginners to learn how to play. These step-by-step lessons are designed so that beginners will feel comfortable with the ocarina and be able to learn songs right away.
The free online lessons are taught by Heather Scott, an accomplished ocarina performer known worldwide to fans of the popular video game The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time for her musical performances and her popular YouTube channel. Learn more about this opportunity here.
In addition to the free online lessons offered with the 12-hole ocarinas, we also offer summer enrichment packages The Art of Ocarina for Young Children and The Art of Ocarina for Older Kids (ages 10+). These packages include method books with step-by-step lessons, demonstration CDs and ocarinas. They are available at http://www.stlocarina.com
Learning to play music well builds creativity, confidence, persistence problem-solving, and other skills that can help children in schoolwork and in life. Regardless of the instrument, every kid should get the opportunity to experience the joy and sense of accomplishment that comes from learning to play.
About the Author: Laura Yeh is a performer and music educator trained in the Suzuki method of instruction who teaches violin and ocarina at the St. Louis School of Music to children as young as 3 and adults. Laura and her husband Dennis have collaborated with ocarina makers around the world to produce new models of the ocarina, an easy-to-learn wind instrument with ancient roots. They have designed and produced many unique and innovative ocarinas sold by STL Ocarina (http://www.stlocarina.com).
Review will be coming shortly!