Q debate: Should music teachers ditch recorders for ukuleles?

The rising popularity of the ukulele has sparked a heated debate among music educators: should the small four-stringed guitar replace the recorder, an classic classroom standby, as an introductory instrument for kids?
Choose a side in the great ukulele vs. recorder debate! Vote in the poll below. ((Top: Enrique Castro-Mendivil/Reuters; Bottom: Nigel Marple/Reuters))

Q debate: The rising popularity of the ukulele has sparked a heated debate among music educators: should it replace the recorder, a classic classroom standby, as the first musical instrument taught to young children? The recorder is less expensive, and a great precursor to band instruments.

Meet your debaters:

  • James Hill, one of the world's premier ukulele players and author of books about the ukulele in the classroom, will challenge schools to switch to the strings.
  • Denise Gagne, an author, editor and music educator with over 35 years experience, races to the defence of the recorder.

Listen to both debaters make their case to guest host Rachel Giese and tell us: if you could only hand one instrument to a classroom full of first time musicians, would you go with the tried and true recorder, or opt for the up-and-coming ukulele?

*Click here or on the listen button above to hear the full segment (audio runs 18:34).

Plus, scroll down to vote in the high-stakes poll!  


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