When Is The Right Time For My Child To Learn Guitar?

A common question I’m asked is “Is my child too young to learn guitar?”.

Young students generally need two traits to effectively undertake lessons – enthusiasm and the ability to concentrate.


Ideally, you want to capitalise on a student’s enthusiasm. If they’re excited to be playing the guitar, then they are likely to pay attention, practice and learn with very little assistance – and then imagine how great they’ll progress when they are guided by their UGA tutor!

On the flip side, if you keep on waiting until they are older, then that enthusiasm may deplete. If your child is enthusiastic, then that’s a great time to enrol them into a guitar school of some sort… like UGA!


Young students will of course need to be able to pay attention in a lesson. If this is a struggle, then they are most likely only suitable for Private Tuition that is face to face. I’d avoid Group, Shared and Skype lessons too. Face to face Private Tuition is ideal and the tutor can even break the lesson up into different segments, with a large focus on areas that motivate and captivate the students – this is almost always songs. Playing songs can comprise the majority of lesson time, with a short introduction working on scales and then a conclusion that works on Sight Reading. Imagine this as a lesson plan…

30 Minute Lesson Plan:

3 min – Greet, set up, tune

2 min – Scales

5-10 min – Play 2-3 songs along with the music

2 min break – Give the fingers a rest, distract the student with some small talk, jokes etc.

5-10 min – Play 1-2 songs along with the music (or perhaps learn a new song)

3 min – Play 2-3 Sight Reading Exercises

2 min – Pack up, say farewell and leave


If a student is so young that they literally can’t hold down a string – that’s ok. I couldn’t when I first started. Sure, it’ll take some work, but they’ll get there eventually. If you were to draw a small circle on some paper and the child is able to put their finger on the circle, then they should be able to learn the guitar. Hell, I’ve taught several young kids who were literally told “you’ll never learn to play the guitar”. Whilst that is heartbreaking to hear, my response is CHALLENGE ACCEPTED.


Young beginners need the right tutor. Adults are quite capable to learn from anyone, but the younger the child, the more important it is to find the right tutor. Following a curriculum is ideal, however I have met young students who learnt better from taking a week to week approach. That’s ok, but I would still try to implement a curriculum or structure of some sort sooner rather than later.


Age shouldn’t be the deciding factor of whether someone learns the guitar. All they really need is enthusiasm, concentration and the right tutor. Now that’s an unstoppable combination!

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