For young beginners, I recommend a year of piano first, since clarinet and saxophone are more challenging to play.
Selecting a Clarinet: For the young beginner, consider the Amati ACL-201 Student Bb Clarinet. The keys are laid out with the student's hand size as the primary consideration. For the intermediate student, consider the Jupiter 737NTO Intermediate Bb Clarinet. For the adult beginner consider the Yamaha YCL-255 Standard Bb Clarinet. For a professional instrument, I would recommend a Buffet. The Buffet Crampon R13 Professional Bb Clarinet with Nickel Plated Keys is an excellent choice for the advanced level, serious musician. Another professional clarinet to consider would be the Selmer Paris Signature Professional Bb Clarinet.
Selecting a Saxophone: I recommend that children begin on the alto sax. This is due to the larger size and heavier weight of the tenor sax and baritone sax. The technique is easily transferred to the larger instruments when the student is old enough to manage the size and weight of it.
A good instrument for a young beginner: Allora Student Series Alto Saxophone Model AAAS-301
A good intermediate/pro instrument: Jupiter JAL-1100 Alto Saxophone
Feel free to ask me for assistance in selecting the right instrument and gear.
A standard 30-minute weekly lesson is ample for most beginners.
No need to purchase any books to bring to your first lesson.
If your child is playing in their school band or orchestra, we can start with the book they are using in school. But soon they will be ready for more in-depth books which we will start as soon as they are ready.
Students are free to emphasize certain styles of music as they progress, like classical, pop or jazz.
For the first few weeks, while they build up their embouchure, 10 to 15-minutes of practice daily is sufficient to make good progress. Afterward, 30-minutes of daily practice works well. Higher levels will typically require more practice time.
To improve note reading skills, it is important to begin new pieces often. So I will endeavor to start something new every week or two and choose pieces that can typically be completed in a week or two. However, some lengthy pieces will require several weeks to complete. So don't be concerned if you occasionally hear the same piece being worked on for several weeks. Particularly if we are preparing to record.
I recommend starting children at age nine or older. Age eight is possible depending on the child.