Want to Play a Ukulele?
The ukulele is a musical instrument that is very accessible to children. Its small size is perfect for little fingers, and it sounds great even if your child (or you!) aren't able to play it perfectly just yet.
Live music has the ability to immediately grab a child's attention in a way that playing a CD or singing a song can't. I've always had dreams of being able to engage children with music like Raffi or Fred Penner. Some lucky children's librarians already have musical talents that they can rely on, and some like me, dream of one day being able to do the same.
One of our librarians singing a welcome song on the library's website for early literacy
But my dreams may come true, thanks to the Sun Life Financial Musical Instrument Lending Library at Parkdale Branch. This past week I was able to sit down with a few children's librarians to get the basics of how to play a ukulele. Most of us were completely new to chords, strings, frets and strumming patterns. But by the end of the hour, we were able to get through a few renditions of The ABC Song, Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed and Clap Your Hands.
Some libraries are so musically inclined that they are making use of the Lending Library's ukuleles by having introductory classes for children of all ages to have a chance to learn to strum!
If you aren't able to attend one of these classes, don't fret (no pun intended!). Head on down to Parkdale Branch to borrow a ukulele for your child. Try one of the following books, or check out this blog post for more ideas about how to learn to play the ukulele.
- Ukulele lessons for kids by Peter Gelling (eBook)
- Get plucky with the ukulele by Will Grove-White
- Learn to play the ukulele by Bill Plant
Or try one of these resource books for ways to incorporate music in your child's life.