Teaching Classical Guitar to Children
The classical guitar is a wonderful instrument. It is well suited for many musical genres and is also a good instrument to learn. However, there is a difference between teaching the classical guitar to adults and to children. With children, it is a whole new world to explore and many teachers are overwhelmed by the task. It is useful to develop certain skills required to deal with children in this case. You can find some information on the differences between lessons for adults and children here: http://guitarlessonssingapore.com/classical-guitar-lessons-learning-child-versus-learning-adult/. This article offers a few tips on how to handle classical guitar training for children.
The first thing to keep in mind when teaching children is that their doesn’t usually last very long. Unlike adults who might have strong musical preferences and passions, children are still in the process of learning new things. But this need not be a disadvantage. Introduce them to interesting classical music and explain why it is ‘cool,’ because children need to feel they are doing something cool that will make them look good.
Make it fun
Children are already under great pressure to perform at lessons in school. So taking classical guitar learning lessons must not be more of the same for them. Try and create fun exercises for your young students. Ensure that the time they spend with you is enjoyable and exciting. This is the only way they will be motivated enough to continue their lessons and to practice. Encourage them with rewards and friendly competitions. It is very important that a child is having fun during these lessons.
Involve the parents
Involving the parents in the lessons is very important right from the outset. It is a good idea to invite at least one parent to come and sit in on the lessons occasionally. Set out rules on basic behavior by parents when they are around, like no taking phone calls, etc. This is especially useful if the parents themselves have no knowledge of music. By attending the lessons, they would understand how to help their children go further and encourage them in ways that work for them. It also becomes easier for you as a teacher to discuss any problem with the parents concerned.
Keep it short
Children don’t want to spend all their free time in lessons, even if it is fun. Most of them want to go out and play or to spend time with their friends. Understand and accept this as a normal growing up behavior. Keep lessons short so that their interest in learning is sustained. Chart out practice sessions for them instead and insist on at least 30 minutes of practice every day. In short, classical guitar lessons must not be a burden on them, but a fun activity.
Keep negativity at bay
Have a discussion with the parents and try to keep all negative influences from the child. There will always be people who are out to scoff and disparage. Adults can handle such things with ease in most cases but children are highly influential. So if an uncle is laughing at the child for learning classical guitar, the parents need to intervene. Similarly, if other children are teasing your student, he or she must be equipped to deal with the situation. Try to keep the child interested by showing them that what they are doing is interesting, fun, and good.
For more information on guitar lessons, please refer to: www.guitarlessonssingapore.com.