First of all, why the Harmonica?
The harmonica is the ideal starting point for children learning music and is perfect for small children because it requires no fingering dexterity or complicated movements. With the harmonica we can also easily play chords, harmonies, articulated rhythms and melodies. The harmonica has none of the shrillness some people associate with other instruments and it also stays in tune and sounds harmonious right out of the box!
What harmonicas do we use?
At HarpsCool we use especially manufactured harmonicas. Your child will get two harmonicas in their pack. Which ones depends on whether they are in KS1 or KS2. The KS1 pack contains a ‘speedy’ 4 hole harmonica and an ‘airwave’ 10 hole harmonica (see below for pictures of both.) The 4 hole is the simplest of the harmonicas and the children will probably start off on this one. In time they will move onto the ‘airwave’, which is also easier to play than more traditional harmonicas, but is bigger and slightly more advanced than the ‘speedy’. The KS2 pack contains an ‘airwave’ and a silver, smaller 10 hole harmonica (e.g. a ‘Sonnyboys Special, also below). This may well be the kind that you have seen before. It is a bit harder to play than the others, hence children don’t generally play this until KS2. Here are pictures of the above harmonicas that we use:
‘Airwave’ 10 hole
‘Sonnyboys Special’ 10 hole
Why do I have to buy a pack, my child already has a harmonica at home?
Your child may already have a harmonica, and that’s great news! However, it might not be the right one. As well as it being important that they have the right type harmonica (see above), it’s also important that they have a harmonica in the right key. We use harmonicas in the key of ‘C’, but you can get them in all keys. Therefore, it’s doubly important that they have the ones that we use in HarpsCool. Buying a pack also ensures that all children start off in the same way.
Examples of harmonicas that aren’t so suitable for our lessons:
What else is in the pack?
In addition to the two harmonicas, the pack contains a music book & cd, and a mission book for writing down notes and homework.
Where can I buy the pack?
If you click here you will be redirected to the shop page. Here you can order everything you will need. If you are having trouble with the online ordering you can phone Pete at the shop on 01594 841 545.