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What to teach 8 yr old?

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 vink
(@vink)
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At that age, kids are under enough pressure from parents and teachers to learn at school - the last thing they want, IMHO, is for learning an instrument to feel like more work, it's got to be FUN to keep 'em interested.

Vic

Vic, I agree .. that's why I want to stay away from method books, regular practice etc .. I sort of like the open tuning idea -- even if she bangs away, it's still music then :-)
.. by which time you can have a couple more kids on the way to take care of bass and drums, by which point you'll have your very own family rock group with which to take on the world.

I would assume you don't have kids yet, right?

--vink
"Life is either an adventure or nothing" -- Helen Keller


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(@noteboat)
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I teach a lot of kids. And I mean a LOT of kids - 60% of my students are 10 or under, some are as young as 4.

With 4-5 year olds, we do open tunings, and play a lot of listening games (which one is higher/lower? louder/softer? I even get them hearing differences between major, minor, and dominant chords). The trick with the real young ones is to speak their language - if you can do that, they're ready to learn.

Once kids are about 6, my method changes. Lessons are divided roughly in half: one half is standard notation - it's a mistake not to give kids that advantage, and since they're learning to read in school anyway, they're just sponges for it. I've got a couple of 9 year old students now who have been with me for 3 years... they can play now Chopin, Mozart, and gypsy jazz right off the page - both can read in up to four sharps/flats in the key signature, odd rhythms, etc.

The second half of the lesson is fun stuff. This starts out with chords - if they have small hands, we do 3 string chords (xxx003 G, xxx001 G7, xxx010 C, and xxx212 D7). If they can reach all the strings easily, I start with Em, and teach chords in the same sequence as with adults.

I'll also teach kids simple melodies right off - Ode to Joy, Take Me Out to the Ball Game, Happy Birthday, Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, etc. Take it a few notes at a time, and they'll play it right back to you.

By the time they get to be 9-10, they'll tell you the tunes they want to learn... especially if they play Guitar Hero!

Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL


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(@scrybe)
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.. by which time you can have a couple more kids on the way to take care of bass and drums, by which point you'll have your very own family rock group with which to take on the world.

I would assume you don't have kids yet, right?

I have seven. I'm working towards having my own Sunday league football team.

Ra Er Ga.

Ninjazz have SuperChops.

http://www.blipfoto.com/Scrybe


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 vink
(@vink)
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Topic starter  

Noteboat, Thanks for your insight. I can't read music, but my daughter already can on the piano..maybe I should give it a shot with it. Unfortunately, although I have been dabbling with guitar, I'm not that good. So, my general plan is to just get her started, and if she gets into it, get her a good teacher!

Scrybe, I am impressed -- I can hardly keep up with my two!

--vink
"Life is either an adventure or nothing" -- Helen Keller


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(@noteboat)
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vink, for a kid I'd go with either Mel Bay's Modern Guitar Method (for the average student) or Mel Bay's Guitar Primer (for small hands). They're both straightforward enough that with a bit of work you can get her started, and maybe learn a bit along with her... and if you run into problems, just let me know and I'll walk you through it.

The difference between the two books: the Primer uses only single strings; the Method gets into chords on about p.25 or so. But these are both books to teach reading... and the easiest stuff to read is in the key of C, which is one of the harder keys on guitar (because of the F chord).

There's no perfect method out there. I don't like the fact that the Primer teaches four notes on the first string (E-F-G-A); I'd rather the A waited for later. I don't like it that the section on the 5th string in the Bay method doesn't have any songs that use the A or B notes - they're only in exercises. In lessons I adapt, skip over tunes and come back later, and write out additional stuff. But IMO they're superior to the other ones out there.

Guitar teacher offering lessons in Plainfield IL


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(@scoks)
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.. by which time you can have a couple more kids on the way to take care of bass and drums, by which point you'll have your very own family rock group with which to take on the world.

I would assume you don't have kids yet, right?

I have seven. I'm working towards having my own Sunday league football team.

Scrybe, I am impressed -- I can hardly keep up with my two!

She's kidding, d'oh.


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(@alangreen)
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I'm guessing (tho not definite) that he means the little black dots on standard notation.

Correctomundo. My younger students all get taught to read standard notation. I learned at compulsory recorder lessons when I was six.

A :-)

"Be good at what you can do" - Fingerbanger"
I have always felt that it is better to do what is beautiful than what is 'right'" - Eliot Fisk
Wedding music and guitar lessons in Essex. Listen at: http://www.rollmopmusic.co.uk


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 vink
(@vink)
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Topic starter  

I'm guessing (tho not definite) that he means the little black dots on standard notation.

Correctomundo. My younger students all get taught to read standard notation. I learned at compulsory recorder lessons when I was six.

A :-)

Cool .. good thing is that she already knows the little black dots from Piano.

--vink
"Life is either an adventure or nothing" -- Helen Keller


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