Angie's List: Music & dance lessons - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Angie's List: Music & dance lessons

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MADISON (WKOW) -- Whether you or your kids have always wanted to learn an instrument or take a dance lesson, there are some things you should know first to get the most for your money.

Kristi Manion's son, Noah, has been taking piano lessons once a week for about six months. "He's not really into sports and we wanted an activity for him to do so he decided on the piano."

No matter your age, instructors say lessons are a great way to challenge yourself, have fun and meet new people. Stefanie Squint is a dance instructor. She says, "We have a lot of adult students that come in and they are nervous at first because they've never taken a dance class before. They've never stepped inside a dance studio but it's something they wish they would have done when they were younger. I just always say come in and try it, just one time."

The cost for lessons can add up quickly to research your options before investing too much. Kristi says, "The reason we bought the keyboard over the piano is to make sure he was actually going to be interested in piano lessons before we made that big investment."

Angie Hicks with Angie's List says, "Whether it's yourself or your kids looking to take up a new hobby, the best bet is to make sure you actually like the hobby before you invest too much into it. Try some trial classes, rent your equipment instead of buying it so you can find out it's the right investment so you don't end up spending a ton of money."

When picking an instructor, ask to look over their credentials and be clear about what you want to accomplish. Hicks says, "I recently took up piano lessons. We've had a piano in my house for years and it's been really fun. It's always fun to learn something new. My husband plays and my kids play and it's created a little family competition with my kids and I."

In general, a good time to introduce a child to an instrument, such as a piano, is age five or six. At age seven or eight, children's hands are bigger and they have more respiratory power. This can be a good age to start a wind or brass instrument.
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