What Makes A Great Guitar Teacher

Many people see an awesome guitarist and think “I’ll get some lessons off him!”. But this isn’t necessarily a good idea because the character traits of a good teacher are completely different to that of a good guitarist.

I’ve met many great guitarists in my time and guess what – most of them weren’t great teachers. Even many top notch professional career guitarists don’t make great teachers.

So – what makes a good guitar teacher? Here are some of the aspects and traits that we believe make a good guitar teacher. In fact, we look for these traits in potential tutors working with us.

  • Patient
  • Outgoing
  • Confident
  • Loves to share knowledge and improve other’s skills and knowledge
  • Is able to connect with a student
  • Can establish a rapport. This is particularly important for students who are young, struggle with learning guitar, have disabilities or those with either behavioural or learning impairments.
  • Good organisational skills
  • Can explain aspects clearly. May also need to explain things repeatedly and in many different ways.
  • Encouraging
  • Supportive
  • Believes in students capabilities and potential
    Actually finishes tasks. One thing we can’t stand is unfinished or half-learnt song. A half learnt song is a song not learnt.
  • Reliable
  • Willing to continually improve themselves
  • Motivating

It’s a pretty extensive list that could probably even be much longer. Now let’s look at what traits make a great guitarist:

  • Loves the guitar
  • Is highly skilled on the guitar
  • Knows a lot of music theory and can apply it to their playing
  • Can compose their own music – whether it’s improvising or songwriting

Playing the guitar requires a completely different skill set to teaching. But there’s much more for potential students to look for in a guitar teacher. When searching for a guitar teacher, we recommend seeking a teacher that:

  • Teaches a range of skills and techniques
  • Makes learning easy
  • Offers a structured curriculum
  • Follows a logical progression in learning (this is much more than just starting easy and working toward harder playing)
  • Teaches all aspects of playing (See the 5 Fundamental Techniques)
  • Teaches students more than just chord progressions in their songs. Students need to learn other aspects like picking, melodies, riffs and harmonies.
  • Helps students play songs along with the music and backing tracks
  • Helps parents keep track of their child’s progress
  • Offers a range of home practice resources for students
  • Thinks and operates in an innovative way
  • Uses technology to engage students

Sure, there are many more aspects to look for in a teacher. But at very least, this is a great starting point that should help anyone find the right teacher for them.

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