Little Music Lessons for Kids by Tatiana Bandurina

Title: Little Music Lessons for Kids: Lessons 1-2-3: Three Cheerful Music Stories about a Staff, a Treble Clef and the Line Notes
Author: Tatiana Bandurina
Publisher: CreateSpace (self-published)
Released: May 6, 2013
Source: Amazon (free special for Kindle)

Synopsis:

You can teach your child music theory with help of the series “Little Music Lessons for Kids” even if you are a total newbie. Magical stories with bright pictures and a cute musical puppy teach your little one about the music staff, how to write a treble clef, and line notes. A step-by-step instruction guide for parents is included at the end of each lesson..

The first three lessons in the Little Music Lessons for Kids series was a free download on Amazon yesterday. Being an independent music teacher, I couldn’t resist reading it for review.

These lessons solidly teach the most fundamental concepts of music theory in a way that is fun and interesting for kids. The stories are cute, interesting, and presented simply. Parents without any music experience at all can confidently teach this information to their children.

Two minor criticisms:

  • The picture of “Little Edward’s flute” is actually a recorder. Although the recorder is technically a type of flute, I wouldn’t say that is common knowledge or terminology. I’d like to see the name of the instrument more accurately reflect the picture shown.
  • I’d prefer that the images of the hand show the backside of the hand so that the thumb is labeled as finger 1, not the little finger. That way the thumb would remain the “bottom floor of the house” but the numbering system would be consistent with what children may eventually learn – or possibly, are currently learning – in music lessons. I can’t think of any instrument whose numbering system labels the little finger as 1. Even when the thumb isn’t numbered at all, it’s opposite. Little finger is always last (4 or 5).
That aside, in my own studio, I’ve found that the traditional ways to teach these basics can be difficult for some students to grasp. Some children need a different approach. Through stories, rather than tedious worksheets and drills, Tatiana Bandurina has provided some fresh new ideas for teaching these concepts. I have never drawn a treble clef in the manner she describes; in fact, I think I was taught to draw it in a completely opposite way. But it works! I love the “inflated B” story to teach children proper note-drawing penmanship. I love the emphasis on the G line when learning about treble clef. And the idea of the staff as a house with multiple floors, each line an “apartment,” is a great visual kids can easily relate to and remember.
I’m interested to find out what stories the “musical puppy” will tell in future volumes of the Little Music Lessons for Kids series!
  • Amy

    These sound interesting (and fun). So, are they specifically geared toward the flute? Or do they just cover theory in general?

    • Definitely theory in general, not instrument-specific. 🙂