I can tell you that my daughter attends a Charter School here in the Hollywood area and she did start learning to play an instrument in the 3rd grade. The children were allowed to choose their instrument and we chose the recorder for her. You generally can find instruments for beginners at Walmart, Target or Kmart in the toy section.
Generally when the children are introduced to music as their subject is when they will learn some type of new instrument in school.
Hoped this helped out!
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