Fun ways for a 5 year old to enjoy playing music on an iPad?
November 7, 2016 9:58 AM   Subscribe

It's coming up to my daughter's 5th birthday and I'd like to get her some kind of musical instrument (probably a keyboard) that will connect to her iPad and allow her to play some fun games, learn some simple tunes, develop her ear and generally have a good time.

I'm looking for any suggestions of hardware and/or software that will make this a fun experience. She loves learning on the iPad generally especially the ability to progress at her own pace and get encouraging feedback when she gets things right. She can already read (words not music!) a fair amount. I'm prepared to consider instrument-only or iPad-only suggestions as well.
posted by tomcooke to Media & Arts (4 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
A former coworker of mine makes an app called TinyPiano . It includes lots of popular and standard songs. You're only responsible for the rhythm, not playing the right note, so it's great for kids. You can also play free form piano on it. Additional song packs available for purchase, but the free catalogue is enough to keep a five year old entertained for quite awhile.
posted by jeffamaphone at 10:14 AM on November 7, 2016 [1 favorite]

Try the Dropophone app from Lullatone! Simple rainbow coloured raindrops play different tones, and it loops until cleared so you can keep adding layers. The best part? The tones are mellow and soothing (not annoying or harsh) and everything sounds good. You literally can't go wrong. (On preview: this isn't directly piano related, but would be awesome for experimenting with chords and developing her ear.)
posted by jrobin276 at 11:10 AM on November 7, 2016

I'd include simple tuner and metronome apps, nothing too fiddly but if she can read, she can experiment with time signatures and the names of notes and so on. I'm not sure if this is standard for these apps now but besides just giving you a pitch, gStrings had an auto-tune function where you could sing/play a note and it would give you the name/frequency. I don't remember which metronome app I used but likewise it had a button that you could tap and it would give you the tempo and bpm. I amused myself for hours trying to see if I could sing a perfect A# or keep a steady 50 bpm, and I'm 32...
posted by yeahlikethat at 11:39 AM on November 7, 2016

Thanks for the suggestions! We decided to get her a low-end keyboard which she can use with apps like Piano Dust Buster and Piano Maestro which work by listening to you play using the iPad's microphone.
posted by tomcooke at 12:44 PM on December 7, 2016

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