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For beginning students, I use the Hal Leonard Basic or Kids Guitar Method because it is such a good introduction to the instrument. For bass and ukulele I also use the beginner Hal Leonard Method books. For more advanced students, I first get a sense for what they want to learn and where they want to go, by asking them some questions about their previous education, what songs they like to listen to, and any problems with practicing or grasping the material, that they may have experienced. Then, I create a custom lesson plan catered to their goals, based on my experience, and various methods gained from Berklee College of Music curricula.
Teaching for me is the difference between passion and disaster. With the right push, anyone can feel the need to play music. Music isn't supposed to be intended for a chosen few. My first teachers really engrained that into my mind when I first started learning. Through this, I have learned to create an environment where there are no mistakes, only chances to learn. It if very hard to continue in something so subjective, like music, constantly berating ones self.
Of course, every student is different, and an integral part of my philosophy involves getting to know each student so that I may learn their creative preferences, strengths, and weaknessness. I do not shy away from books, I do indeed enjoy working out of the Hal Leonard collection because I appreciate the step by step structure. This may apply less to guitar, however, if the student's primary ambitions are to learn songs by Green Day or The Beatles, etc. Jazz music has its own rather extensive work load, which differers greatly from classical and rock, but I hope very much to put my qualification in this realm to good use very soon. Typically, I like to break the lesson up with a healthy balance of techique (scales, chords, etc), interpretation (etudes, pieces), and creativity (free play, improvisation, composition, etc.)
Being a new teacher I can't speak to really any past experience. All I can say is that music has to be fun period. You're not going to practice if you don't enjoy what you're doing!
I love sharing music. It is probably our greatest gift as human beings, and the most fun activity. I run my own music camp and love nature. I have performed in jazz, folk, rock and original music bands as a first call session player and arranger. I also lead my own original music bands. I graduated Berklee undergrad in 2005 and have taught all levels and ages since then. I came back to the US to attend the first Master's Program at Berklee College of Music and I love sharing my knowledge with both beginners and advance musicians. My greatest asset is taking the student to the next level.
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At Musika, we appreciate that every student learns at their own pace. As such, the experienced teachers in our network produce customized guitar lessons specifically for the requirements of each individual student. Teachers can design lessons for any student, regardless of their age, experience, or ability. Some of the things students can expect to learn during their lessons are learning all the notes of the guitar, playing and rhythmic techniques such as fretting, fingering, and strumming, how to read musical notation and tablature, learning how to play a variety of different chords, such as open and barre chords, and music theory. Over time, as each student progresses, they will learn how to piece everything they have learned together, in order to form complete compositions. Students can learn to play their favorite songs, or even to write their own music!
At Musika, we recommend that the earliest age at which students start to take guitar lessons is about 6 years old. A nylon stringed, half-size classical guitar will be the easiest and most comfortable instrument for younger students to play. In this age group, students will learn to play simple songs on the top strings. By the age of 7-8, students can start to form chords and play and sing along to some of their favorite songs. Students in the 10-12 age bracket, are likely to want to learn how to play rock music on an electric guitar, and should be comfortable playing a full sized guitar at this stage.
Where possible, it is beneficial for younger students to begin their guitar lessons on a smaller sized guitar. Half or three-quarter sized acoustic guitars are the most suitable guitars for young beginners. Older students who can manage to hold their guitar comfortably may wish to start out by using an electric guitar. For $150 - $200, a brand new student model guitar can purchased. However, this price does not include the cost of buying an amplifier or guitar leads, which are essential for an electric guitar player, and will therefore incur additional costs. Students will typically have fun and enjoy playing an instrument dependent on how easy they find it to play. Consider that higher quality instruments are often nicer and easier to play when looking to buy a guitar.
At Musika, we highly recommend that students looking to learn to play the guitar do so with a clear goal in mind. Whether your goal is to learn to play your favorite tunes, learn to compose your own music, develop a new technique, or just to play for fun, the experienced teachers in our network can help you make those goals a reality! Learning, developing, and improving technique, co-ordination, and theory can take time. With regular lessons and plenty of practice, you will gradually start to see improvements in your guitar playing, and will be well on your way to achieving your goals.
Musika offers one-on-one, in-home guitar lessons that are designed specifically for each individual student. Whether your lesson takes place in a teacher's studio or at home, students will get the exact same lesson content, with the only difference being the location. Parents will find home guitar lessons a much more convenient option for their child, as it saves the time and costs of transporting their children to and from a studio. Younger students will find that learning to play the guitar in the comfort of their own home greatly benefits their development as they are learning in a supportive, secure, and familiar environment.
Review by Roselynbrown
After moving from NY and parting from our amazing piano instructor, we thought we couldn't find a piano teacher close to what we knew. We are happy to say Musika matched us up with someone professional and friendly who enjoys teaching younger students. Thank you! We definitely recommend Kuan as a piano instructor :)
Review by Leslyn
Steve is an excellent instructor. My son has really connected with him and he is learning the guitar quickly. Steve is patient and never rushes through a lesson in order to make it fit within the session time limit. In addition, before he leaves, he writes notes and instructions for my son to follow. By the next lesson, my son is confident in what Steve has taught him. Most importantly, Steve builds my son's confidence in his own own ability and progress after each lesson.
Review by Susan
My daughter is extremely happy and comfortable with Rachel, and looks forward to her piano lessons every week. She is a very kind and patient teacher, always using positive reenforcement with my daughter, which makes all the difference in the world to children. We definitely are looking forward to continued piano lessons with her. So glad we found her.
Review by Steven G.
Laura is the kind of teacher you wish you had in all your studies: gracious, easy-going, light-hearted, yet behind the easy going exterior is an excellent musical mind with everything at her fingertips. I've had about 5 teachers in my life who count as really influential people, and Laura easily fits that category. She lets you be yourself so that you are fully present rather than old-school doctrinaire style, what I call "stiff as a German, sig-heil" teachers. She's the polar opposite. Brava, Laura! Thank you so much!
Review by Alex A.
Travis rocks. My 7-year-old son and I both take lessons with him. Travis has moved me off the plateau I was on with lessons that focus on theory and technique. And for my son, he's been able to instill a desire and interest that were missing when he previously took piano lessons. With Travis teaching us, the limits are the ones we impose on ourselves. Needless to say, Travis himself plays a mean guitar to boot!
Review by Kaleen Todoroff
Noel is amazing. She is helping me to work toward my vocal goals for auditions to several musical theaters. She has helped me choose strong audition pieces and is teaching excellent ways to get the sound I need in a safe and healthy way. She works outside our lessons on new warm ups and new music pieces. She is the best.
Review by Jaima Woodiwiss
Having taken 6 years of piano lessons myself when I was young, I am very happy with Osmond teaching my daughter. He is very personable and helping her to enjoy piano. My daughter loves the fun songs she gets to play and I really appreciate how he is integrating even in the first month fingering, chords, beats, and hearing the music. She's getting a very well rounded training and she's loving it!
Review by Sarah M
Dan gave private clarinet lessons to my daughter, Annie, for two years. During that time, she excelled as a member of the middle school band, and maintained first-chair. Dan is an excellent teacher, and Annie looked forward to having one-on-one time with him. In addition to practicing pieces with her, he helped her with scales and greatly improved her tone quality.
Review by Nancy
Darrell is A-Maz-Ing! He demands results from his students and therefore results come quickly. The time he spends teaching is intense and packed with great instruction. He is a tough teacher but offers lots of valuable instruction that is applicable for music as well as life in general. I highly recommend Darrell if you are ready for results!
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