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Private Guitar Studio Instruction, Boston, MA, 2005 - present Northampton Center for the Arts, Jazz-Ensemble Instructor, Northampton, MA, 2004
When in the field of Music Education, I do adhere strenuously to the Standards set forth by The Education Dept, which gives a clear understanding as to what they are supposed to learn during the Grade they have achieved. My lessons and objective come from those guidelines. I will not often deviate from it, although I will use my own discretion in determining how to meet the Standard. I maintain alot of educational materials of my own to augment what is already available to me, as well. My experience in various settings, coupled with my education makes me very suitable for going into any situation and taking control of it from the inception.
For my beginning students who are children, I like to start with Alfred's Music books based on the instrument they choose. They are specific, yet easy for kids to follow along with, and encourage practicing by making each song fun. For adults, we journey into what the student is interested in or inspired by, and then I guide my instruction accordingly to keep our lessons engaging and fun, no matter their ability level. For voice, I assess the student's natural gifts and ear and capitalize from there. Starting with breath control, posture, and pitch control, then advancing to mouth placements, diction, and emotion. I encourage and guide each student to work towards having at least three rotating songs that they have memorized to always be prepared for recitals, talent shows, performances for family, or auditions.
My teaching methods consist of my own custom lesson plans that are specifically tailored for each individual student. During the first lesson with a student, I like to get a feel for where they’re at in terms of ability and goals. Then I introduce the skills they’ll need to reach those goals in the form of songs they like or kinds of music they listen to. For beginners, I start with basic exercises and fundamentals that will give them an ability to play and improve before moving on. For the more experienced, I assess their current skills and work on further developing them. No matter the student’s ability level, it is my job to keep the lessons fun and engaging!
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For adults who are looking to learn to play the guitar, we recommend that they do so with some clear goals in mind. Maybe you want to learn to play some of your favorite songs, join a band, or write your own music? Whatever the aim, the experienced teachers in our network can help unlock the skills necessary to make those goals a reality. It can take time, often months, to develop the techniques and co-ordination required to play the guitar at a competent level. The most effective way to progress with your playing is to take regular lessons and practice often.
Most children will start out by playing simple songs on one or two strings, before moving on to play chords. Students will start to learn to read music immediately but will also learn chord charts so they can start learning their favorite songs. Students can learn classical guitar from a young age - preliminary skills are very similar regardless of the style being taught.
For young beginners, it is suggested that they start their guitar lessons by playing half or three-quarter sized acoustic guitars. Older students may be able to start off using an electric guitar, under the condition that they find it comfortable to hold. A student model guitar can be purchased in the $150 -$200 price range new, however, extra costs will need to be considered for electric guitar players, as amplification and cables will need to be purchased as well. Higher quality instruments tend to be easier to play, which will facilitate students enjoyment and progression in learning to play the guitar.
The teacher's in Musika's network plan guitar lessons with the specific requirements of each individual student in mind. During the course of their guitar lessons, students can generally expect to learn: how to hold, tune, and familiarize themselves with the components and notes of the guitar, basic playing techniques such as fretting, fingering, and strumming, and learning the various chord-types that they will need in order to play their favorite songs, such as power chords, open chords, and barre chords. Students will also get to learn music theory, and will cover such aspects as reading music, learning different scales, and how to apply these different elements together as part of a full composition. Students will learn the theory and techniques that underlie a wide range of musical genres, and will have fun developing their guitar playing during their lessons. Eventually, students will get to enjoy learning and playing along to their favorite songs!
Musika specializes in individually tailored, one-on-one guitar lessons in the comfort of your home. Whether your child learns in the studio or at home, the quality and content of each lesson will remain exactly the same. Home guitar lessons reduce the burden on parents to transport their children and equipment to their lesson, which saves time and money and helps to integrate lessons into busy work schedules. Musika prides itself on creating fun, engaging guitars lessons in an environment that students feel comfortable and familiar with, important conditions for their musical development.
Review by Terri
Caitlyn is friendly, helpful and still holds my high-school aged daughter accountable for practicing. She also makes sure the music technique is mastered correctly during the lessons - they work hard and still have a good time together. I can highly recommend her as a flute teacher. My daughter is very happy & grateful to have found Caitlyn as a teacher.
Review by Ro J.
“My son has been instructed by Mark for almost four years. Mark is an outstanding teacher. His credentials are by themselves impressive, but his ability to relate his knowledge to kids is even more so. Connor's ability to understand and read music is fantastic. Mark also knows the performance side of playing drums and has encouraged Connor to actually incorporate his knowledge to play alone and in a band. He is patient and encouraging which is what motivates Connor to work and practice. He is a mentor as well as a teacher. He is superior at what he does and we highly recommend him.” Ro J.
Review by Stan
My two daughters wanted to study piano fore some time now and just recently I found Musikalessons website and teacher Milica. I can only say that my daughters are very happy with their piano lessons and simply adore Milica. They already made a great progress and we're all happy with what they learned in this short period. Thank you Musikalessons and Milica.
Review by Gillian
Vince is a great drum teacher for my 8 year old son. We go to his house where he has a studio setup with a huge drum set. He has been very patient but really holds my son responsible for learning the right way to play. After about 5 lessons, my son is playing some rhythms on the drums and reading music. He looks forward to his lessons with Vince.
Review by Elsahatzipavlou
Erin has been a wonderful voice/piano teacher for our 7 year old daughter. She is talented, patient, and has a wonderful demeanor. She has been consistent with her teaching in piano and voice. She keeps record of where the students leave off so that they know what to expect the following week. I would definitely recommend Erin to anyone looking for a skilled piano/voice teacher.
Review by Brad Schimmer
I have been playing the drums for about 5 years and I have to say that Alvaro is very patient. He has opened me up to new styles of music and I can now play a Songo groove! What I liked most was that he was flexible in what I wanted him to teach me and would also bring in new material specifically to what I wanted him to show me. Overall, great patient teacher and would highly recommend! Thanks Alvaro!
Review by Jennifer
Dave is a fantastic teacher. He brings a wealth of knowledge and experience to students that I think is invaluable. At the same time, this does not limit him from working with beginning students. He is very communicative with the parents as far as schedule changes. We are so grateful to have found him!!
Review by Thomas Pickens
"I've been taking lessons with Richard for just a little over six months now and all I can say is that he is an amazing instructor. He hasn't followed a set one size fits all script in his lessons but has instead worked with my musical interests and at my pace in a way that is truly valuable. He has also kept things fun, interesting, and engaging even at times when I've felt overwhelmed and discouraged. This is an instructor that is truly adaptable to his students and will make sure that they get the most out of their lessons. I would definitely recommend him to anybody that truly wants to unlock their musical potential."
Review by Marcia Hecht
Karleen has really turned it around for me. My previous teacher (not from Musika) had me feeling anxious, upset, and incapable...NOT the desired result! Karleen's method is clear, appropriate for my beginning level, and (best of all) actually lets me achieve some progress! I'm actually looking forward to my lessons now!
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