I was visiting my sister a few weeks ago and I was amazed at how much her little one enjoyed banging on their toy drum, with lights and music, they kept at it for well over an hour. There’s just something about drumming for little kids, they love it.
If your child wants to be a drummer or maybe you want them to enjoy drumming. There is nothing more inspiring that you can do than get them a drum at this age, it might be the start of a lifelong love of music, as learning rhythm is so important. I have done the research and I will take you through the best drums and drum kits for any budget. I have listed my top picks below for convenience, but you can learn more further down the page.
I think personally that the overall best drum set for a 3 year old is:
- MENDINI 3 DRUM SET – See why
I feel that the best value drum kit is:
- VTECH KIDIBEATS DRUM SET – See why
I was so inspired when I saw this video of a 3 year old drummer. He is absolutely amazing! It made me realise that it’s never too early to get a 3 year old into something new and exciting. Who knows? Maybe they will take it further, maybe not, but when I watch that video I can see that the little boy is having so much fun. That’s how it should be.
Learning a musical instrument has also been proven to be great for the development of your 3 year olds brain. What can be more attractive to a child than the drums, they can start making a noise straight away and who knows? Maybe they’ll be hooked. There’s no other instrument quite like the drums to get a 3 year old’s extra energy out in a more productive way.
VTECH KIDIBEATS DRUM SET
This drum set is perfect for 3 year olds, and everyone knows about the Vtech brand, everything I have owned from Vtech has always lasted really well. As well as all the different drum pads lighting up to catch your three year olds eye, it also has 4 different modes, all of which seem really fun. The first is “free play” where they can bash away until their hearts content. The next two are interesting, as Vtech has included two educational modes. One for letter and one for numbers, which I think really extends the use that this toy will get.
Probably the most interesting mode of them all is the “follow-along” one, your 3 year old can tap along to 9 pre-programmed melodies. I think this will be great for them to learn timing and have fun at the same time.
The drum has three different drum pads and a cymbal and each one has their own sound. I like this kit as it actually mimics a real drum set in looks and it comes with drum sticks. Another really useful feature is the fact that you can reduce the volume of the sounds it makes. This will be a lifesaver when you still want them to have fun but you don’t want their drumming to drive you around the bend.
The reviews on Amazon are overwhelmingly positive (There are one or two who say that the music plays all the time and it’s annoying, but there is a simple switch on the side to stop the music, they obviously just haven’t found it yet!). You can check the price over at Amazon.
I particularly loved reading this review on Amazon from Angela Anaya:
This product’s description does not do it justice! It’s waaaay more awesome than what they are telling you! My favorite things about this drum set are the fact that it helps your child learn the alphabet and numbers! My son was OBSESSED with this toy until he got all his letters and numbers down! This drum set even expanded his vocabulary! I love this toy and I STRONGLY RECOMMEND this toy for other toddlers and preschoolers! You will not regret this purchase! There is also a volume control button on the bottom that comes in handy when needed! 🙂
WOLVOL ELECTRIC BIG TOY DRUM SET
This drum even includes its own microphone and chair! The chair will also mean they can have longer drum sessions. This drum is quite a bit bigger than the VTECH KIDIBEAT one but I think the VTECH comes across as much better quality. The reviews are very good for the drum set and so many people seem to be happy with it. but there aren’t actually as many as some of the other drums sets, which can be a worrying sign. One is particularly glowing and made me think a bit longer about buying this
My husband gave this to my son for his second birthday and it remains one of his very favorite toys of all time!!! He loves to talk (scream…) in to the microphone and hit the different drums with the mallets. If you’re concerned about noise, don’t be! The sound effects for each drum head are pleasing and there is a volume control if you feel like you need it. The little stool is sturdy and fits my guy perfectly. He can drum by himself or along with the different preloaded tunes, so it helps him develop rhythm and timing while he enjoys himself! It’s really a fantastic toy! – Jaye (Amazon customer).
It has some of the same features as the VTECH one, with the number and alphabet modes, but I think it’s much bigger and I felt it would be harder to store at home when not in use. I also thought that it just didn’t look as good quality as the VTECH one for a good value simple drum set. Anyway, have a look at the price over at Amazon, it’s not too bad for the money.
MENDINI 3 DRUM SET
This drum set looks awesome! It looks so cool I know I wouldn’t be able to help having a little drum myself. It looks like a real rockstar set, the kind of think that you would see on the stage at a stadium, although admittedly a little bit smaller. It comes in 5 different colors, which could be a factor in encouraging them to practice more. The drum set is recommended from 3 to 8 years old, so it leaves them plenty of room to grow into the set.
The set has:
- 13″ x 8″ Bass Drum
- 8″ x 6″ Mounted Tom
- 10″ x 4″ Mounted snare drum
- 8″ Cymbal with cymbal arm
- Round padded height adjustable drum seat
- Bass drum pedal
- A pair of wooden drum sticks
This set is a leap in quality, the drums are made from hardwood and they have real metal on the rims.
They also do a 5 drum Mendini (see it at Amazon), if you wanted to go all out, but my advice would be to stick to the 3
I love this drum, it’s so fun looking and REMO are a seriously professional drum manufacturer. It’s only one drum, rather than a set, but I can just imagine how much fun a 3 year old can have growing up with this. It’s actually made for banging on with hands or sticks. So they could start off beating it with their little hands and then move on to sticks when they have the motor skills.
The jungle pattern on the outside looks great in my opinion. Remo says themselves that rhythm is the basis of all music making, so a drum as a first instrument is an amazing start to their musical journey.
The reviews for this on Amazon are nothing short of spectacular. It still has an average of five stars with over eight hundred reviews! That just screams great value and quality if that many people are happy with it, have a look at all the reviews on Amazon. My favorite review is definitely the one below:
We bought this on Amazon almost 10 years ago as one of our (then toddler) son’s first instruments. It has now been banged on by two boys growing up, their friends, used as a stool, action figure launcher, and who knows what else. This thing is of HIGH QUALITY. Remo makes great instruments. They also make SOLID instruments. This drum is nice because you don’t have to be so worried about the kids hurting it. My acoustic guitar is hung up high on the wall. My tuba is hidden (as much as you can hide a tuba) in a hard shell case. This is out in the open for playing music, or just playing with. The sound is fairly deep, so you won’t have a bashing headache as your young drummer finds his/her beat. Buy with confidence. Ours has been BEATEN in many ways and it still looks new. – ASC (Amazon customer).
ROCKJAM RJ103-BK 3-Piece
The RockJam comes in two colors, black and red and it certainly looks the part. It is a great first drum kit for a 3 year old and will still be great for them up to the age of 7. It comes with everything you need to get started straight away, which is always good, especially when its a present and they want to get banging on it straight away. A drum is such a good first musical instrument, kids are naturally drawn to drums as they can easily make a pleasing sound with them, unlike other instruments.
The kit includes:
- Bass drum with 4 lugs
- Hanging tom-tom drum
- Snare drum with stand
- Crash cymbal with cymbal arm
- Bass drum chain driven pedal
- Pair of wooden drum sticks
- Drum seat
The reviews for the RockJam are good, but
My husband is a drummer and I, the non-drumming wife, ordered these for our 3 year old son. Here is our review:
*Packaging is amazing! The drums come nested with stands and hardware individually packed. It made my type-A organizer self so happy.
*Setup takes a while. Granted we were juggling a 1 year old but this took 2 hours on Christmas Eve night to set up, and like I said my husband is a drummer so he knew what he was doing. The heads need attached, the hi-hat, snare stand and bass pedal all need assembled. It’s not hard and the instructions are fantastic but it does take time.
*Quality is amazing. For a “toy”,the quality is unmatched. These things come with a drum key and my crazy husband sat for like an hour on Christmas day tuning them to perfection. He then sat on the tiny stool and showed our boys up with his mad drumming skills. Yeah, it was easy to show up a 3 year old but these drums really sound fantastic.
*A fleece throw makes an excellent cover. Having a blanket to put over the drums when our eardrums just can’t take any more is this mom’s definition of sanity. – Amazon Customer.
In the end I went with the Mendini set as I think it’s better quality and a cheaper price.
Hape Mighty Mini Band Wooden Percussion Instrument
I had to include the little Hape mighty in the list of drums, even though you would probably class it more as a set of percussive instruments, because it’s just so good. It’s definitely more along the lines of a simpler toy, but because it is made of wood it just looks so good. It also has many different instruments all on one board, including a xylophone, a drum, a cymbal, a guiro and a clapper.
It’s not too big and it’s easily stored away, so perfect if you’re short on space. Hape are well known for making beautiful wooden first instruments for children, and I especially like that all their wood is from sustainable sources. It’s also brightly colored, which your 3 year old will love.
The reviews for the Hape on Amazon are excellent with over 200 and an average for 4.5 stars which is amazing. Take a look at how much Amazon has it for, it was on sale when I wrote this article. My favorite review has to be this one:
This toy is high
Remo RH-5600-00 Rhythm Club Bongo Drum
Another one from REMO, but this time we have a fun bongo! This would be great for the younger kids as no sticks are needed, they can bang away with their hands. It also has two different sounds (one high and one low) so it might just keep them entertained for longer. It’s REMO quality too so expect many years of music from it, they are practically indestructible. The drum is even tuned in the factory, so by the time it reaches the hands of your 3 year old it will sound great from day one.
The outside of the REMO bongos carries on with a fun theme, just like the larger drum we saw before. I think any REMO drum will be an investment for your 3 year old as they will play it for years to come.
The reviews are amazing as with most
We have owned these drums for over 4 years now and they have taken a beating! Infant, toddler, preschooler, and elementary aged kids have pounded on this with hands, mallets, and rhythm sticks and our Remo is still going strong! We are big fans of this brand because of the durability. It can hold up to what kids put it through and keep on going. This is a perfect size for little hands and is light enough for even a toddler to carry around. I would not hesitate to recommend this brand or this specific drum to anyone looking for a quality, durable instrument. We have had many a jam session with these bongos and look forward to many more! This is not just a toy, it truly is a beautiful, quality, musical instrument. – Grace (Amazon Customer).