What I Have Learned About Teaching Beginning Guitar in the Classroom

by Bill Swick

Lesson 1

The more students there are in the class, the slower the pace, the more times it is necessary to repeat things, and modeling and classroom practice become of the utmost importance.

The mathematics of this is quite simple. If teaching a private lesson, the one-on-one is catered to the needs of the single student. If a second student is added to the lesson, things slow down considerably. Add a third student, and the pace gets even slower. Now imagine 30 students in a studio for a one-hour lesson. That is what it is like teaching in a classroom of guitar students every day.

A 30-minute private lesson takes about five 1-hour class periods to teach 30 students. When planning the material to cover in guitar class, select approximately the same amount of information for the week that can be covered in a 30-minute private lesson. The one difference is having lots of activities planned with far more application to the materials than what can be covered in a 30-minute private lesson.

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