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big guitar grids button
big guitar grids button

Acoustic or Electric? The best guitar for a child to learn on

half size guitar for child beginners

Should a child learn to play guitar on an electric or an acoustic instrument?

When teaching a child to play the guitar "properly" it is important to look carefully at the options available with regard to what type of guitar to go for

If you take a look at our material dealing with whether steel or nylon strings are best for a child beginner on the guitar you will see that in almost all cases steel strung (acoustics or electrics) are the best option

If steel strings are the way forward then the choice becomes between an electric and an acoustic guitar and here Im going to stick my neck out and say that a child (and arguably all guitar players) should learn the basics on an acoustic instrument

Aside from the extra expense of buying an amplifier (and the noise that goes with) which would be money better spent on upgrading the quality of the instrument itself I will make my pitch for why an acoustic guitar is the best option for any beginner and that pitch is based around the fact that an acoustic guitar responds far more to a player than an electric typically does This is particularly true when you factor in that electric guitars are often (too) quickly combined with effects such as distortion and compression that can serve to mask the fact that the person playing the guitar is not as good as they perhaps sound on first hearing

In my one on one guitar lessons with older students I refer to this sort of thing as "artificial talent boosting technology" designed to fool people into thinking that they are better guitar players than they actually are, I encourage electric guitar players to practice with no effects whatsoever (okay maybe a little reverb to warm things up) so that they can hear their playing as it really is rather than having their sound masked by pedals and effects that can fool them

The "compression" effect (commonly built in to amplifiers or effects pedals) evens out a sound making the quiet parts louder and the loud parts quieter. Sounds very good in theory until you consider the notion that this reduces the obligation for anyone learning to play on an amplifier or with effects units that use compression to develop "loud-quiet" dynamics in their own playing

When I teach adults who learned to play on an electric guitar it is by no means uncommon to find that they either attack the strings much too gently because they are used to the amplifier doing all of the "heavy lifting" with regard to their sound or (more uncommonly) that they hit the guitar too hard and rely on their effects pedals to smooth out the rough edges

I shouldnt complain really because either way I get paid to solve a problem that would not have existed had they learned to play the very basics with an acoustic guitar being involved at least some of the time

Childrens hands are generally not too small to play guitar chords

Most children don't struggle too much with the fingerboard of a guitar anywhere near as much as they do with holding, supporting and getting their arms around the body size of a "full sized" guitar and even if they seem to have trouble "stretching" to play full chord shapes there are tried and trusted methods and resources such as a range of commonly used "reduced one finger chord shapes" that effectively address this situation

What can present itself as a stretching issue is often really just the developing of manual dexterity issue common to all beginner guitar players of whatever size and age

half size guitar suitable for child

 Second of a series of kids guitar lessons featuring two new chords for children to learn

The Kid's Guitar Teaching Package

 How To Teach Kids Guitar, Chords For Children
Over forty sheets to download and use in your guitar teaching today. This material is designed to run alongside the "Backing Tracks and Handouts Package . All of the resources that you will need in order to teach kids to play guitar. Chord Charts, One finger (reduced) chord diagrams etc. An opportunity to start any young would be guitar player off the right way!

Our Backing Tracks and Handouts Package

 How To Teach Kids with Guitar Backing Tracks
20 Backing Tracks and 46 Handouts. An invaluable teaching aids designed to help you to teach both rhythm and lead guitar to younger and older students alike Great for helping to develop a good dense of timing

The Guitar Teacher's Toolkit

 How To Teach Kids Guitar
100 printable sheets dealing with Open Chords-Bar Chords-Scales- Modes- Blank Fretboard and Chord Grids Teaching Diary and Business Card Designs

Plus 100 Giant (letter sized) Chord Grids

 How To Teach Kids Guitar Chords
laminate them in order to help you to teach group guitar lessons, distribute them to your students or just stick on your teaching studio wall? The "Coolest Wallpaper on the planet?"

And a freebie from us to you!

The Bass Guitar Teacher's Toolkit

resources for how to teach kids guitar chords
Over 60 Handouts for anyone who already teaches (or who wishes to teach) bass guitar covering Scales, Chords, Fingering Exercises etc

Over 300 Sheets and 20 Backing tracks to Download and use TODAY!

Everything you need to start or improve a guitar teaching business! It's all there!

Only $25.00

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