If your child is interested in playing the flute, there are some important flute accessories you should purchase before you even think about signing them up for lessons. Not only can these accessories make their playing better and their practicing easier, but they will help make their overall experience more enjoyable. Provided your child doesn’t lose or damage them along the way, many of the flute accessories on this list should last for a good amount of time. From cleaning supplies to chapstick, here’s a list of essential accessories your child will need in order to play the flute happily and successfully.
Unless your child has a photographic memory, they’ll need a music stand to hold their music while they play. If the music stand will mostly be used at home, a heavy and super solid music stand is a great choice. Not only will it support the weight of a lot of music but, if your child prefers to practice near an open door or window, the wind won’t blow away their music. If you plan on transporting the music stand to and from lessons, a lightweight, folding music stand is the better choice. They’re easy to carry and collapse so you can fit them into a small bag. If you need something that offers the best of both worlds, there are plenty of sturdy, yet transportable, options available on the market.
Flute support devices are just that- devices that will help keep your child’s flute stable while they play. Many new flutists find it difficult to hold their flute and play all the notes, especially those in a marching band. Whether your child has a hard time holding the flute at the right angle or has difficulty playing trills, a these flute accessories can help. Worn like a ring on the left forefinger, flute support devices are flexible in nature and quite easy to use. Although flute support devices are great accessories, they do require some patience and experimentation. Depending on which device you purchase, you may have to modify your flute case if you want to keep a flute support device attached to your flute while it’s in the case.
Cleaning Supplies & A Case
So, you spent a lot of money on your child’s flute and you’d do anything to protect it from harm, right? Fortunately, purchasing a sturdy flute case and keeping the flute clean and maintained can help prevent unnecessary (and expensive) damage. Look for a hard case with room for your child’s flute accessories, and make sure your child knows how to keep their flute clean and properly maintained. Some cleaning essentials include polishing cloths, pad savers, and a cleaning rod. Some flute manufacturers sell cleaning kits and maintenance packages that contain everything your child will need to keep their instrument clean. If you’d prefer not to purchase everything separately, these kits are a great option.
Most, if not all, of your child’s practicing should be done with a metronome– especially at the beginning. Although not exclusive to the flute, this accessory is a must-have for each and every musician, regardless of their instrument or specialty. A metronome will help keep your child in time by generating a steady click at whatever tempo it’s set to. When used the right way, practicing with a metronome will improve your child’s technique and time, forming them into a better musician. As far as design and functionality goes, it’s up to you- as long as the metronome is fully functional, what it looks like doesn’t matter. Give your child some freedom to choose the design they like the best.
If your child doesn’t already know how important their lips are to playing the flute, it’s only a matter of time until they do. Dry, cracked lips will make it difficult for them to play with proper embouchure, and the more often they play the worse their lips will get. The important thing to keep in mind when it comes to Chapstick is that the product shouldn’t make playing more difficult. Avoid products that are too slippery or waxy, as they’ll take away all the sensitivity and leave a gross residue on the flute. If possible, purchase your child a lip scrub and moisturizer combination. The first product will remove dead skin cells from the outer layer of their lips, and the moisturizer will prevent their lips from drying out in the first place.
Taking care of your flute is just as important as purchasing the proper accessories. Check out Proper Care & Maintenance of a Flute.