One thing I have noticed in my time is that there are plenty of people out there teaching guitar. So how do you know who the best teacher would be for you? Here are some GREAT questions that I recommend asking EVERY guitar teacher before booking with them.
1) What are your qualifications and experience?
Experience is important. But the right training and qualification can make a very powerful guitar tutor. All UGA tutors have some sort of formal music education, but are also required to go through our tutor training process.
2) What structured curriculum do you offer (if any)?
This is important for anyone wanting to learn all aspects, progress at an even rate or is a young student. The AMEB and Trinity College are quite popular courses, though neither are well suited for young students. In fact, many students dislike them because the song selection is full of old jazz songs they’ve never even heard of. The Ultimate Guitar Method lets you choose your own songs; rock, pop, acoustic, blues, metal, jazz… it doesn’t matter, as long as you are demonstrating the content from your grade.
3) Do you have a course designed specifically for kids aged 12 and under?
Even if you’re enrolling an older student, there may be a younger family member who’ll soon become interested and want to learn. The Ultimate Guitar Method contains Steps A – D for kids under 13. We’ve taught this to plenty of kids over recent years and it’s one of the only guitar courses that’s specifically designed to make the guitar as easy as possible while still using contemporary music.
4) Can students choose the music they want to learn?
Guitar students hate being forced to learn music they don’t know or care about, resulting in a poor learning experience. The better option is to choose pieces that students are excited to learn, but will also teach them new skills, chords and concepts. Motivation and fun are crucial for the learning experience of all students.
5) What skill based instruction do you give your students?
The real secret to improving your guitar playing is learning the skills that exist within the music. We’re always saying “Don’t just learn songs… learn from songs!” These skills should be extracted and practiced extensively – hence why The Ultimate Guitar Method contains exercises!
Unfortunately, most guitarists can’t read music and claim it’s somewhat outdated due to guitar tablature and youtube videos, however sight reading improves timing & rhythm skills and makes you a better guitarist. Studies also show that it makes you smarter!
7) How are parents kept informed of the student’s progress?
G.I Joe used to always say “knowing is half the battle”. The person in charge needs to somehow stay informed on how things are going. At UGA, we complete Progress Reports for all student’s parents and offer reports for adults who would like some feedback on the progress and playing. We also welcome emails, calls or messages from parents who would like some quick, occasional feedback.
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