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Young children and the Flute?

edited July 2013 in General discussions
I have a young child who has expressed interest in learning an instrument beyond the Recorder he learned in school.  Would the Flute be a good instrument to step up into or is it a harder instrument to learn?


  • The flute is a complete challenging instrument. Knowing how to play the recorder is a great first step. Then the next step is to find a great flute teacher in your areas. Then, and only then find a good student flute, like a Yamaha student flute. In fact there are ratings on the flute.com home page that may help you. 
  • Hi - I'm an oboe specialist, but I teach flute and other woodwinds besides oboe (not bassoon...).
    One of my 4th grade piano students wants to start band. She was a preemie and is still small, like a yr or so behind in growth. She's had a bit of experience playing the recorder and also plays viola. I had her try my full size flute and I think it might be a physical strain on her hands until she grows into it. I've been trying to find information online about scaled-down smaller flutes (but still play in C) and have found only 1, the Blocki Student Flute (Di Zhao Flutes Inc.).

    I would appreciate any advice on:
    - what brands to absolutely stay away from
    - anyone w experience with these smaller flutes
    - where else I might search for a smaller flute

    Thanks a bunch!
    Musically - Mimi
  • Hi Mimi :)

    I'm a flute teacher as well, and I really like the Nuvo Jflute (also known as the Blocki flute). I've used it successfully with littlies as young as 5. From my experience, it's much better to start them on the Jflute than the fife.  They immediately start to learn where to put their fingers (which is much more complex on the Jflute than the fife) and they feel like it's a 'real' flute.  They're about half the weight of a silver recurve flute, and they are much, much harder wearing.  This is perfect with really young ones, and also for those who might be a bit older but perhaps prone to being uncoordinated.  One of my seven year olds started off hiring a silver recurve flute from me, but we pretty quickly switched him to a Jflute - he has Aspergers and tends to be quite uncoordinated, so the Jflute is perfect for him.  His mum can relax without worrying that something horrible will happen to it, and he can also concentrate on what I'm showing him, rather than having to devote brain space to being careful with a silver flute.

    I'm amazed at how little I've seen about the Jflute on various flute forums - I think they're a great tool for younger ones who are interested in learning.  Everyone seems to recommend the fife, but I personally think the Jflute is far superior for a whole range of different reasons.

    I like to use it with Andrew Scott's Let's Play Flute - this is a great, easy to read, interesting book for the younger ones.

    Phew... just re-read my post and it sounds like I sell Jflutes!! I don't, I promise - I just really think they are a great option :D Can't recommend them highly enough.
  • encouage your child more to play flute it's worth it I learned on a bundy flute thats a good beginner flute but flutes can be exspenceive you can get one for 100.00 if you look hard but a good quality would start at 500.00 and up its todally up to you     please forgive my spelling I tell my students thats why I teach flute not spelling lol
  • Hi Mimi,

    There's regular concert flutes with a curved head joint, made specifically for kids with their smaller hands/fingers. Off my head, I believe Jupiter has (had?) one. Seems another good brand did too--maybe Armstrong? 

  • edited September 2015
    Okay, just did a quick Google of "student flute curved head joint". Gemeinhardt and Yamaha both have one.

    Woodwind/Brasswind has a Jupiter that comes with both straight and curved heads.

    Probably others if you dig a bit more than the few minutes I just spent.

    Edited to add--if a curved student head is anything like the curved bass head, be aware there will be intonation issues.

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