Psychologists proved learning music is a skill, as well as a hobby or interest, that utilizes a child’s imagination, and by starting at an early age, they can thoroughly enhance their creative development. A lot less daunting than a piano, a keyboard is an excellent introduction to learning to play an instrument while approaching concepts such as rhythm, tempo, and notes in the process.
We’ve reviewed 22 options to choose the 10 best keyboards for kids, with the Yamaha YPT-260 as our top pick. We concentrate on what we consider to be the most essential, namely the number of keys, the sounds and rhythms available, the headphones’ output, how the keyboard is powered, and any additional warranties. Additionally, if your kid is older or approaching the teenage years, you’ll want to go with a full-sized keyboard since they’re more typical and comfortable than smaller versions.
Extra features: 9-step lesson function with the Yamaha Education Suite, record and playback, aux input to play along from phone, tablet or computer
The Yamaha YPT-260 is both ours and Amazon’s choice for best all-round keyboard, as even though it’s an entry-level keyboard, it packs a lot of features into its portable design. Not only is this versatile and perfect for those players just starting out, but it actively works to provide an advanced functionality that will grow with the player as he or she advances. With a power adapter included so play can begin immediately, this model offers a whopping 400 voices, 112 onboard songs and 130 auto accompaniment styles, complete with backing tracks. There is also a nine-step lesson function, called the Yamaha Education suite, that players can press to enhance their play, as well as downloading a free song book to get them started. Ensuring you get the maximum from this keyboard, there is also the option to utilize the audio input and use your preferred music to play along with a tablet, phone, or computer alongside recording and playing back each item! With a maximum polyphony of 32, and a simplistic but thoroughly handy music stand built in to the keyboard, this model is geared towards offering first class entertainment and fun for the player, and indeed the whole family.
Customers of the Yamaha YPT-260 find it more than adequate as a keyboard for those completely new to playing, or even those with the basics already developed. With just the right number of features included, many satisfied customers rate this a perfect keyboard for beginners, which is strong and sturdy as well as sold at an unbeatable price.
The Alesis Melody 61 MKII is our choice for best value keyboard as it offers a wonderful assortment of features and benefits at a great price. With an amazing 61 responsive keys, this portable keyboard with built-in speakers allows not just the younger of family members to experience making music at its best, but also offers ultimate entertainment for the rest of the family in the meantime! Furthermore, this particular model gives an impressive 300 built-in rhythms and a one-touch mode which should completely inspire all budding musicians. Consisting of built-in tones with split layers, the Alesis Melody 61 MKII allows you to create, record, and play as well as access a total of 40 demo songs, or record your own if you’d prefer. Proud to offer a complete all in one product which provides everything the beginner needs to start their keyboard journey, this model also comes with a stand, which is simple to assemble, a three-height adjustable bench, a power adapter, a music rest, a microphone, and a pair of headphones! Additionally, if you’re interested in the interactive aspect of this keyboard, the Alesis Melody 61 MKII encourages all users to access their three-month trial of Skoove – which is an in-depth online course helping you master the art of playing piano much quicker.
Customers of the Alesis Melody 61 MKII find this an almost perfect smooth transition for those mastering it to move onto an actual piano with no problems at all! With a great audio quality each time, despite being a smaller sized model, this is considered an almost perfect starter keyboard by all.
For a keyboard which offers one of the best additional kits as standard, the RockJam RJ761-SK is our favorite keyboard bundle! This is because it comes complete with no less than a pair of headphones, a keyboard stool, a keyboard stand, and even a sustain pedal – making sure that all players attempting this model get one of the best all-inclusive experiences from it possible. This model is also Amazon’s choice for Best Keyboard Piano and with 61 full sized keys, 100 keyboard sounds, 100 rhythms, and 30 demo songs as standard it’s not hard to see why! The LCD screen allows you to record and play back, while the attached sustain pedal works to incorporate an additional tone to your playing, enriching the whole experience.
Added to this, it comes with a wide range of connections for headphones and mics and now offers MIDI as standard. The sturdy and adjustable keyboard stand included allows this to be moved anywhere you are in the home, and the accompanying stool is thickly padded for maximum comfort throughout playing time. What’s more, should you require a quieter session, the headphones included can be used to prevent disturbing other members of the house.
Customers of the RockJam RJ761-SK find this the better all-inclusive package which makes this one of the more suitable choices for beginners.
Our budget pick of the bunch is the Casio SA-46. This is a 32 mini note keyboard which is perfect for those smaller of hands! Compact, but offering everything a child needs to get started playing the keyboard with, this model also offers five drum pads for variety. With a staggering fifty play-along tracks included, children can get a real feel for the notes, tones, and rhythms of the keyboard using these examples, while building the confidence to try them out for themselves independently afterward. There is a headphone output included to make that experience more personal for the child and this also means they can continue their playing in the car, when travelling, or when at a guest’s house and they want some entertainment, without annoying the hosts! Thought the Casio SA-46 may look like a toy at first glance, it’s a great way to attract a younger child’s attention while allowing them to indeed play around with the settings and sounds, familiarizing themselves with what a keyboard can do before thinking about moving onto some of the bigger models. The LCD display highlights the 100 timbres and 50 rhythms that the child can discover for themselves, alongside the 8 note polyphony. A great addition to this keyboard is the ability to move between both piano and organ sound in one simple switch.
Customers of the Casio SA-46 highly rate this for its fun factor, believing it to be a great introductory model which holds a child’s interest and encourages them to explore playing further.
The Jo JK-66M is our choice of Best Stimulation Keys Keyboard for its ability to offer one of the easier of keyboards when it comes to operating it and performing the most basic of commands. By simply pressing the power button, the LED display screen will immediately light up and turn on, so you can begin to play the keyboard straight away! This is a great product for beginners as it offers an impressive three-step intelligent training session. This basically means one key, follow, and ensemble – meaning no matter how little experience you have of playing the keyboard, this method should have you ultra-proficient in no time at all! With a wonderful-sounding built-in speaker system as standard, there are a total of 128 timbres, 128 rhythms, 12 demonstration songs and eight percussions to select from here, all of which are aimed at helping the beginner learn quicker. Consisting of 61 keys and an MP3 player function this keyboard is shaped in the same way as a piano, encouraging a sound and deeper understanding of it, equaling a rich sounding performance every time. This keyboard also comes with everything you need to get your musical journey started including a keyboard stand, music stand, music stool, power adapter, and headphones.
Customers of the Joy JK-66M consider it a great addition for those beginner of keyboard players, finding it the more simplistic but adequate of models on the market.
If you’re looking for a more vibrant style of keyboard, look no further than the Vangoa VGK4900! This hot pink-colored 49 keyed keyboard is not only visually fantastic, but also offers a mic to enhance the playing process! Complete with a power adapter, players of this model can plug in and go immediately accessing an astounding 200 timbres, 200 rhythms, and no less than 50 demo songs! The step-up design of this system means you can listen to the many offerings, play along for fun and then repeat everything that you’ve heard all the while learning to master playing the keyboard successfully! With a prominent LCD display, there is also the ability to record and playback through this uniquely designed and completely compact of keyboards. The sound is great on this model, making its way through dual built-in stereo speakers, perfect for the most flawless of songs and tunes. Additionally, if your child prefers, they can play and listen to their work through external speakers or preferably on occasion headphones, especially when those around prefer a quieter session! This model also provides a much needed built in music stand which can be raised and lowered with a flick of the hand and offers the ultimate in practicality when reading and playing from accompanied sheet music.
Customers of the Vangoa VGK4900 are perfectly happy to find a keyboard of such a vibrant color and find it more than lives up to its larger and expensive counterparts, offering a great deal of additional features, which both beginner and more advanced players can benefit from.
The Casio SA-76 wins our vote for best mini keyboard. This minimalistic keyboard complete with 44 mini-sized keys is a fraction of its larger counterparts – but still packs a punch with its impressive features and wonderful price tag! Complete with no less than five percussion pads, there are an astounding 100 sound types to choose from and 50 rhythm patterns in total from this smaller Casio model. It also offers a piano and organ tone selection at the touch of a button, with a melody on or off lesson function as a great addition. With an easy to read LCD display which guides the user throughput the process and allows you to see the notes being played on screen, this model is aimed at those looking for their first introduction to playing keyboard and piano. With the eight-note polyphony ensuring a great sound quality, the melody cut rehearsal aspect of this keyboard allows younger players to work on the most effective training for the right hand. For further exploration, there is a handy music songbook included.
Customers selecting the Casio SA-76 find that though this is a cheaper model and more compact of models, what it lacks in size it certainly does not lack in great sound quality – and is therefore highly sought after as an introductory keyboard for all youngsters beginning their musical journey.
Extra features: record and playback function, comes with stool, stand, headphones and mic
The Hamzer 61-Key is undoubtedly the best 61-key keyboard. Most impressive in this model is its ability to offer an authentic and almost flawless sound each time with its tremendous built-in speakers. With a staggering 255 timbres, 255 rhythms, 24 demo songs, and 61 keyboard percussions, this is an integrated learning system which means it’s suitable for a range of players to start as beginners and then proceed to more intermediate levels. With an LCD control display allowing ease of selecting and changing controls, advanced sound options, and 61 standard key sizes, this is the perfect keyboard with which to master finger control. A portable but hugely effective durable keyboard, included with this model is a music stand, music stool, a pair of headphones, a mic, an adapter, and an owner’s manual. Whether players wish to play out loud or keep their attempts to themselves, this keyboard allows all progress to be recorded and played back and has a host of additionals such as program, edit, sync and fill in, adjust tempo, and select chord timbre. Compact enough to use on your travels or as a permanent fixture in the bedroom, the Hamzer 61-Key is a user-friendly keyboard that will offer hours of musical entertainment and work with your child from the very basics right until they master the art of playing the keyboard.
Customers of the Hamzer 61-Key model find it the best keyboard for beginners to acquire the necessary skills needed to play such an instrument while getting ready to move onto a more professional board, or even a real piano!
Extra features: interactive LCD screen shows beginners the correct keys and chords to play
The RockJam 54-Key is our choice of Best Starter Keyboard for kids simply because it allows you to download an interactive teaching app, which works with your child to help them master how to play the keyboard from scratch. By placing your iPhone or iPad safely into the music rest, your child can watch as they are guided through the correct keys and chords to play on Piano Maestro app – which is ranked number one for all beginner piano students! This is a 54 full-sized key model which offers younger players the chance to experience what a traditional piano feels like, for future reference! Thoroughly compact, this is a more portable design which can be taken out and about. The record and playback functionality of the RockJam also includes eight demo songs with 100 different piano sound effects, 100 rhythms to select from and an LCD screen which yet again guides players as to the right keys and chords to be played. This is the next best thing to having a music teacher at your side throughout! Including built-in stereo speakers and microphone access, this is a great introduction to keyboards for those looking for some guidance when playing. The addition of a music rest is also thoroughly practical when placing sheet music on for hands free performance.
Customers of the RockJam 54-Key find it the perfect layout for using with beginners of all ages, as players can learn the fundamentals of beginning to play the keyboard without being too overwhelmed with complicated various functions in the meantime.
Our choice of Best Keyboard for Toddlers, the Tencoz Musical Piano Mat is a delightful and ingenious way of starting them young and an enjoyment for both parent and child alike! Thoroughly portable to be carried and put down in many types of rooms, this 19 key mat musical blanket has a built-in speaker and recording function, so your child can play, record, play back their work, or select a demo to give them some added inspiration! With eight musical instrument sounds to select from, your toddler can train themselves using saxophone, violin, trumpet, harp, accordion, guitar, vibraphone and piano. There are also nine black keys offering corresponding music tones, all which combine to help your child learn the basics of music knowledge but all while having fun as they do. Easy to store away when not in use, this mat also ensures that if it’s left idle for more than two minutes, the smart energy saving mode will switch if off, therefore not draining your batteries. A non-woven and non-toxic fabric, this mat is delicate under foot and can be cleaned easily. We’ve included this piano mat here as at this stage your child doesn’t have great hand and eye coordination, but they can hear the rhythm through their feet, creating a love for the keyboard and piano very early on.
Customers love the Tencoz Musical Piano Mat for its wonderful fun-filled introduction to the world of music, with toddlers being able to create musical masterpieces without even realizing they’re doing it!
Now that you’ve had a chance to look at some of our best-rated keyboards for kids, why not take a read through our detailed buying guide before making that final decision? This is an extensive guide which we have put together to offer you as much information, expanding on what we believe the perfect keyboard for kids should ideally provide. Take a look through the following features that we suggest looking out for before selecting your preferred model.
Perhaps the most significant benefit of getting the best electronic keyboard for kids is being able to encourage your child to develop a passion for music at such a crucial young age of their development. However, by selecting a model which is designed solely for kids, you can purchase one which caters to a child’s smaller hands, making the playing experience more pleasurable, while allowing them to correctly position their fingers at the very start of their playing experience – making sure they start as they mean to go on!
There are many essential and additional features that such beginner keyboards will offer in abundance. Almost every keyboard will claim to offer something not found in similar models, with some unique benefits only available in certain model types. However, though these features may be plentiful, it’s worth taking a little time to ensure that your chosen keyboard offers you benefits that your child will be able to utilize and thrive with. All our reviewed keyboards above provide some of what we feel are the critical elements and essential features that children need from a first keyboard, and here we explain them further.
The number of keys on a keyboard could range from anything from as little as 25 to as many as 88 – which is the standard amount found on a traditional piano. If your child is tiny and this is their very first introduction to the keyboard, they will need a board with a minimal number of keys at this stage. The number of keys available will depend on the types of music the user will be playing, but, at this stage, it’s safe to say that will be limited as they concentrate on just learning music and which notes to select! The Casio SA-46 is perfect here with just 32 keys to get your child on the right track. However, as an average figure, as you can see for yourself in these reviewed products, the maximum at beginner stage should be 61 keys in total.
Though you may think a keyboard should merely offer an adequate representation of a piano, for the younger the child, the more variety of songs, music, and rhythms works to encourage them to explore their own musical creativeness and pick up some well-known pieces faster as a result. Therefore, if you can select a keyboard with plentiful demo sounds, sound effects, or sounds, such as the Hamzer 61-Key which offers a wider variety of choice, it inevitably means they’re bound to find at least one choice which they’ll be able to work along with and practice to the best of their ability, albeit while having fun.
As you can see from the above-reviewed models, there is undoubtedly an age range to consider when selecting your chosen keyboard. For example, you won’t be looking at the Tencoz Musical Piano Mat for any other age than a toddler. Yet for the younger of children, the RockJam 54-Key may be the better option alongside the Casio SA-76, merely because they accommodate the much smaller of hand sizes making them perfect for the younger child.
If your child is older or heading towards those teenage years, the more standard sized of keyboards, that is those with full-sized keys, will be a more practical option here, as well as more comfortable.
The Alesis Melody 61 MKII is a great example of getting them ready for the smooth transition to piano.
If you believe your child would benefit from additional teaching, then considering a model with other features to encourage a more structured keyboard lesson would be recommended here. With so many keyboards now offering specific apps, you can directly connect your iPhone or iPad to your child’s keyboard and allow them to be guided by technology if you wish. The Alesis Melody is perfect here as it offers a three-month trial of Skoove helping you master play much quicker. However, if you don’t like the added distraction of technology at this point, you can also get a good teaching mode from the Yamaha YPT-260 9-step lesson function with its inclusion of a Yamaha Education Suite.
Though you may feel the connections aren’t of great importance in a child’s keyboard, when it comes to the stage whereby you find your child getting used to playing their keyboard and therefore playing more continually and loudly, you may well want them to make use of the headphone port to keep their newly acquired talent to themselves! Yet, it should be noted that a select few keyboards don’t allow headphone connections. Similarly, you may want to select a model which will enable your child to make use of a mic, an additional speaker set, or even in time, a sustain pedal.
Not one keyboard is a standard size, but when you are looking at selecting a model for a younger and smaller child, you will want to ensure that the keyboard you choose here is easily accessible and, above all, comfortable for their little hands!
A larger full-size version will mean smaller hands have to work harder to reach and move across, which can easily tire a younger child and leave them feeling defeated when they can’t quite make the notes in time to the tempo.
The Casio SA-46 is just the right size to get those younger and smaller of children started off as its mini construction allows for easier and swifter movement, which is perfect for a child’s needs.
Though not always a primary concern, for those parents or guardians looking to capture and sustain their child’s keyboard interest, having a fully inclusive package could mean the difference between having your child playing instantly or delaying their practice time by having to order many extras to get started! For example, a vast number of models do not automatically come with a power adapter, though they do have a facility for one. Therefore, you’ll need to make sure you have a wide range of batteries to hand to get started.
If you want to offer your child the best all-around playing experience, you may want to consider such essentials as music stands, chairs, keyboard stands, and headphones as primary accompaniments.
The Alesis Melody, the Joy JK-66M, the Hamzer 61-Key, and the RockJam RJ761-SK all offer a seat, stands, and headphones as standard, and can ensure your overall purchase doesn’t end up escalating as you search for a practical addition to a basic keyboard model.
The two main ways of powering your keyboard are through a power adapter or alternatively, and more so if you’re traveling, by using batteries. It’s highly advisable to check whether your chosen model comes with a power adapter as standard, as only a couple here do, and make sure if you’re looking to work off the battery that you have a plentiful supply, with the average keyboard requiring around six batteries in total!
Finally, if you feel that a warranty or guarantee of some sort would reassure you should anything happen during the keyboard’s use, you may want to consider those models which offer such aftercare. A standard warranty of around one year is sufficient enough and what most keyboard suppliers, including several of the above-reviewed models, seem to offer. This will all depend on how much you have purchased your keyboard for and what the manufacturer can provide you with at the time of your purchase.
Hopefully, by combining our extensive review list and detailed buying guide, you will now feel more informed as to the best keyboard for kids.
Our favorite on the list here is the Yamaha YPT-260, which is the best all-around keyboard as it has many functions – but displays them in a more approachable layout, making it the perfect entry level keyboard for all ages. Our second choice is the Alesis Melody 61 MKII, for the best value keyboard as it offers not just a keyboard, but all the additional extras that make the whole playing experience that more comfortable throughout. Thirdly, the RockJam RJ761-SK is our best super kit keyboard as, like the Alesis model, it too comes with many features but additionally a sustain pedal which is a great way of adding an extra element into your child’s learning process.
Overall, all these reviewed products are the ideal starting models to offer to a child who is keen on getting started with this fantastic musical instrument.