Every child should have some chime bars (AKA resonator bells for US readers) or a xylophone to play with. They’re a wonderful tool for learning to listen, perform and read music.
But chime bars are such a good investment too, as they’re suitable for toddlers right up to children of 7 or 8 years old. Kids can’t resist playing them, and they never seem to lose their appeal so they always give excellent value for money.
A traditional xylophone is always a great instrument for kids, but if your child is just getting started with music then individual chime bars or resonator bells are an excellent choice. They allow you to introduce the notes gradually, concentrating on just two or three at a time.
When the individual notes aren’t fixed, it gives a lot more flexibility. They’re more portable and you can play a lot more games where they can be shared out, or hidden. These sets are particularly good because they look like a complete instrument in a case, but they actually come out and can be played separately too.
Invaluable Teaching Tool
There are a whole host of benefits of chime bars for younger children. From developing motor skills, hand eye co-ordination, listening skills, colour and number practice to learning to sing in tune to simple intervals. Chime bars are also brilliant for teaching kids solfege, which builds a firm foundation for learning to read, hear and play all music.
In short, they teach kids how notes sound as they move up and down, giving them a spacial awareness of intervals. This provides a good grounding for reading music later on.
Chime bars are such adaptable instruments, and as kids get older they are a great help with learning to read music and encouraging creativity with composing and improvisation. They help to build memory skills as kids develop patterns and sequences which is also so good for maths development. So as children grow and develop, they can do even more with them.
Try these games!
The activities below are all great ways to learn and practice with chime bars. Kids love them, they can be played at home or included into lesson plans for a group. Either way they’ll not only become old favourites, but build a firm foundation for learning music.
Introducing Do – Re – Mi
Do -Re – Mi Activities – The Do – Re – Mi Staircase
Introducing Do – Re – Mi – The Balloon Song
Introducing Do – Re – Mi – Little Mouse’s House Singing Game
Pussycat Do – Re – Mi Game
Hey Ho Here We Go! Learning So – Mi
After a while children will be able to pick out familiar tunes by ear, but if you need some help, check out Incy Wincy Spider, Twinkle Twinkle, Mary Had A Little Lamb and Frere Jacques for some easy free sheet music.
The chime bars are always a favourite activity at any music class. Check out our weekly lesson plans for detailed step by step guidance on how to incorporate this brilliant resource into your own music classes.
Leave a Reply