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My teacher

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Eminent Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 14
Topic starter  

Hello All!!!!!!

i have been playing for 6 months and I am a little worried about the way my teacher is teaching me. At first he taught me the notes then several chords i have now mastered these.

Our lessons now consist of me bringing in songs i would like to learn and then him showing me how to play them. I learn the songs quite well but my point is shouldn't he be teaching me theory and things i can apply to other songs rather than just learning particular songs???

Being a school teacher my self i fell the way he is teaching is similar to making a 6 yr old memorize a single book and then saying they can read.

i live in a area where there aren't many teachers and although i have painted a dismal picture here i think he is quite good as he is professionally trained and well regarded in the area so i don't want to get rid of him but any suggestions on how i can get him to teach me more would be greatly appreciated.


Honorable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 441

Well, you should have already discussed you goals.

I would just tell him what I wanted to learn and where I wanted to be in 3 or 5 years. I am sure he will be open to teaching you what you want to know.



Reputable Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 373

Songs and theory could be balanced if you just ask him.

Theory is the understanding and songs are the motivation.

The balance, over time will have everything fall into place one day.

If it was easy it wouldn't be worth doing.

Famed Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 2801

This is a pretty common thing. It happened to me several times with my teacher as well. But I've come to realize that he sees me for 30 minutes a day and really doesnt have a clue what my interest, goals, and so forth are. He has probably 50 to 100 students and although I am very important to him, I know because he told me so. :D He cant keep every detail about each student in the fore front of his mind.


What I have to do is every so often sit down with him and say.. Ok.. I like where the lessons are going but I would like to learn more about theory in this area, or.. I feel so bogged down in all this theory that I would really like to do something fun like learn a song..

Every since I have taken this approch my lessons have gone TERRIFIC, Just take the same communication you brought here and have that discussion with you teacher. They want to keep you happy, satisfied, and they want you to enjoy your guitar so just let him know how to make that happen.

Best of luck to you.


“The hardest thing in life is to know which bridge to cross and which to burn” - David Russell (Scottish classical Guitarist. b.1942)

Noble Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 2171

A lot of teachers (myself included) subscribe to a "master some technical stuff, learn some fun stuff, master more technical stuff, learn some more fun stuff" type of schedule.

Ideally, while learning the "fun" stuff, he should be pointing out those things that you've already learned and talking about how it's being practically applied. He should also be pointing out those bits of technique and theory that you don't know yet, and giving you a little insight into where you're going to be going.

Sounds like you need to have a talk with him just to make sure you're both on the same page with regard to your goals and expectations. Doesn't sound like a big deal to me . . .unless you don't talk with him.

Every teacher worth paying wants students to let them know what they need and expect from the teacher.

"The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free, and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side." -- HST

Illustrious Member
Joined: 20 years ago
Posts: 5044

I had the same thing happen to me too. Just talk with your teacher and tell him what you want to learn, goals, etc. Maybe write up a lesson plan. That should help. If he still insists on teaching you songs, and not what you want to learn, maybe he isn't as experienced as he is letting on.

"The only way I know that guarantees no mistakes is not to play and that's simply not an option". David Hodge

Estimable Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 88

geoo - excellent advice. I have my first lesson on Monday and have a list of goals I want to achiee at the one year, three year and five year marks. A combination of theory, songs, chords.....I want it all but will be patient. I also happen to be a Type-A personality so don't have any issues letting him know where I want to go.

Great advice guys!


"Practice until you get a guitar welt on your chest...if it makes you
feel good, don't stop until you see the blood from your fingers.
Then you'll know you're on to something!"
- Ted Nugent

Prominent Member
Joined: 19 years ago
Posts: 735

The first words out of my teachers mouth(beside his name) was, what type of music do you like? What would you like to learn? songs, reading notation, theory or everything? So tell him what you want to learn.