With 11.7 million YouTube views, you must see this performance by Jake Shimabukuro, a ukulele virtuoso known for his complex finger work. Be sure to watch the last minute where Jake plays a pretty incredible sequence.
My husband gave found Jake on YouTube and my kids loved watching him play, especially my son who plays the guitar. My son then had his guitar teacher, a graduate student from the New England Conservatory, watch the video. His teacher had not heard of Jake but he was also impressed. He told us that Jake used Flamenco guitar techniques on the ukelele so, of course, my son wanted to try it himself.
The second video is instructional. Jake breaks down his fingering techniques. Though he’s very clear on how to do it and makes it look easy, it looks pretty difficult to emulate. Still, my son was inspired by Jake’s accessibility as a performer and watching him play makes my son play his guitar more. If Jake ever comes to Boston — he’s on tour now — we’d make a great effort to catch him.
What do you think of Jake? Did you ever imagine the ukelele could sound like that?
There are such a great array of musical toys for kids of all ages starting with infants who can get exposed to classical music through Baby Einstein Take Along Tunes. Toddlers enjoy hands on (and I mean Hands On) playing and manipulating instruments. Preschool kids can make their own band either with clever toys or with friends. There are even authentic wooden instruments for young elementary school kids to try out before they start lesons. Read more…
My girls’ wonderful flute teacher sent me this link and also weighs in as both a parent and teacher on how to get kids to practice their musical instrument. I don’t know about your experience, but I found that it’s the rare child who will practice his or her instrument consistently without constant prodding and nagging. My younger sister, who is now a piano teacher, studied classical at a rigorous studio that included monthly performances and many, many competitions. Despite this pressure to perform, she wasn’t a kid who liked to practice. I think the reasons are many: Read more…
I had to reach back into the recesses of my brain to remember junior high school orchestra. I played violin for a few years, but actually my younger sister is the talented musician in our family. She studied classical piano and competed successfully as a kid and is now a piano teacher in Southern California where she teaches out of two locations. She told me that her young children like this app very much! I’m not surprised because my sister is an early technology adopter and this app combines two things she’s really into: her iPad and classical music. Read more…
My sister is a piano teacher in California. She has a three-year wait list and her students have rich and rigorous experience that includes not just the requisite recital, but monthly performance workshops, classical musical competitions, and juried piano recitals to earn certifications of merit. Her students are serious about piano and practice everyday and the time commitment is a significant one.
I told a reader that I’d post this article and just happened upon it again after failing to locate through several Google searches. Are exceptionally talented kids more likely to succeed in life? Are the cards dealt early? This article says otherwise and it does make sense: the first child to walk is not necessarily winning gold medals at the Olympics. Early readers are not the highest scoring children in literacy at elementary school. It turns out, according to this article at least, that the future success of exceptionally talented kids is highly dependent on good parenting — not the pushy kind. Read more…
Hi! I'm Mia Wenjen. I love children's books (picture books through YA) and sneaking in teachable moments in art, science, math, foreign language and language arts.
I'd love to chat with you. Let's connect! PragmaticMomBlog (at) gmail (dot) com.
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