In an era when music and arts education is being cut from schools, many parents are looking for ways to fill in the gaps. Private music lessons are nice, but not everyone can afford them, and hardly anyone has time to cart kids to yet another scheduled activity.
One tool is technology. There are so many apps and digital enrichment programs that finding the right one can quickly become overwhelming. To help, we’ve collected some of our favorite music apps to get started. (Also, check out our digital arts apps.)
These are listed by the youngest appropriate age group, but many will also engage older children and even adults. (Add in your favorites in the comments!)
There are several apps that help preschoolers recognize a variety of musical instruments and sounds. After 15 minutes with one of these apps, my 4-year-old spent the rest of the day calling out the names of instruments she recognized in songs on the radio.
2. Animal Orchestra. FREE, Android
Grade school students, or anyone who is just beginning to learn to read music, can practice reading sheet music with these apps.
4. Notable. FREE, iOS
5. Sheet Music Trainer. FREE, Android.
For motivated teens, an instrumental instruction apps can be a great way to try out a new instrument or even achieve proficiency. Piano and guitar apps are most common, but the variety of instruments available is always growing.
7. Piano Lesson. FREE, iOS
8. Beginner Guitar Songs. FREE, iOS
9. Piano Instructor. FREE, Android
10. Learn to Play Guitar. $1.62, Android
There is even an app that teaches students how to tune their violin.
11. Tuner and Violin Sheet Music. FREE, Android
About the author: Gemma Alexander is a Seattle-based writer and mother of two.