Ocarinas are simply the BEST! Fact.
The evidence is grounded in 34 years of Whole Class Music-making:
The plastic Oc® received the highest accolade of “Best Music Education Product” in the 2015 Music Teacher Awards For Excellence. Three decades of continuous development, rethinking, redesigning, retooling and remaking has brought this musical instrument to the pinnacle of its creation. It remains UK-made under the watchful eye of David and Christa Liggins, whose teaching expertise keeps the needs of both the child in the classroom, and the class teacher, in sharp focus. David and Christa’s child’s-eye-view on the playing of the instrument and their teacher’s-eye-view of methodology give a perspective that has created robust, musical instruments with ready-prepared teaching materials.
- Ocarinas are lightweight – all other instruments are bigger, heavier and much more awkward to hold
- The finger-holes are positioned within reach of even the smallest fingers and are small enough to be easily covered
- Just the two strongest fingers on each hand are used to play a full octave of notes
- Neither hand is dominant as the holes are side-by-side
- No special embouchure is required – a steady breath rewards the player with beautiful clear notes
- If the player blows too hard or enthusiastically, the instrument cuts out and remains silent
- Tunes can be played immediately by following charts that are understood by pre-readers and those with reading difficulties
- This ocarina ‘code’ is always attached to the musical stave giving access to standard musical notation
- The musical skills acquired are transferable to all other instruments and for general musicianship
- Ocarinas have no moving parts and arrive (and remain) fully set up, tuned and ready-to-play
- The 4-hole Oc® has no thumb-holes so the teacher can see exactly how each child is doing
- It is not possible to produce a second octave or squeaks
- Ocarinas (vessel flutes/helmholtz resonators) are the world’s purest-sounding instruments due to their round shape
- When played in large numbers, the sound of many Ocarinas blends well together, and remains at a safe decibel level
- Music-making becomes rewarding for everyone, keeping music as the dominant language of the classroom
- Music-reading can be taught through doing, and the methodology encourages teaching music as a language
- All the class can play – even those with English as a second language or those with Special Educational Needs
The Ocarina is so simple that, with just a moderate breath, everyone is rewarded with immediate musical notes. This chromatic octave range of notes can easily be explored and the different pitches enjoyed, even by children with special educational needs or physical disabilities. Everyone, including autistic, dyslexic and pre-reading children, can understand the ocarina notation and play tunes accurately with a good sound.
Primary-age children like the fact that the Ocarina is chunky, tactile and pleasant to hold, available in six bright rainbow colours and worn on a matching string to signify ownership: this keeps the Ocarina safe and ready to play all day. Secondary-age children and adults find that the Oc unlocks latent musicianship. The Ocarina gives everyone a chance to make music to an appropriate standard, whether just a handful of notes or hundreds of tunes. Try it yourself – you will be amazed at what is possible with this precision-designed 21st century instrument.