Quite simply, the sound of the flute is beautiful. And at the beginning stage, it is one of the easiest instruments to learn. Students quickly learn how to produce a tone and can make quick progress. The notes are the same as the recorder, an instrument that is universally introduced in the younger grades. It is not uncommon to learn several new notes in one lesson. It is very rewarding for the student because they progress quickly and are able to play simple, popular melodies within a few weeks of playing.
Because of its convenience, it is an excellent first instrument for young players. It is small and light weight, easy to assemble, and easy to clean and maintain. Beginner instruments are reasonable to purchase, and do not require the recurring expense of new reeds.
Most important for school aged children, the flute is a versatile and social instrument that allows them to make music with their friends and school mates. It is featured in bands, marching bands, orchestral, and jazz ensembles. One can play several musical genres, such as classical, pop, and jazz.
The best age to start lessons is 7 or 8. The child’s fine motor skills have developed sufficiently, their arms are long enough to accommodate the size of the instrument, and their hands are large enough to cover the keys. Producing a tone on the flute requires the most relaxed and natural embouchure of all of the wind instruments.
The flute requires a lot of air and takes some time to develop the necessary breath control. I advise several short daily bursts of practice at first, about ten minutes at first. Rest for an hour, then try another ten minutes until the stamina improves. Learning how to support the breath with proper use of the diaphragm and maintaining a relaxed open throat is similar to correct singing technique. In my experience, I find that those who choose to learn the flute progress more quickly than any other woodwind instrument.
Like the piano, the flute is an ideal first instrument. One learns how to read the treble clef, which is the most common clef. Since it is a lyrical instrument that is often assigned the melody, the student naturally learns how to play expressively and musically.