Lesson Materials

Guitar

There are 4 basic styles of guitars that will meet the needs of all beginner guitar students:

  1. Steel string acoustic guitar (often called a folk or songwriting guitar).
  2. Nylon string acoustic guitar (often called a classical or flamenco guitar).
  3. Steel string electric guitar (which requires an instrument cable and amplifier).
  4. Steel string bass guitar (which has 4 very thick strings that produce a much lower sound than all other guitars, and also requires an instrument cable and amplifier).

To get an overview of the uses and reasons why each one of these styles of guitars are played, and which size and style of guitar are appropriate for beginner guitar students, please click on selecting a guitar or guitar information for specific guitar purchasing details.

PickPick

Although there are several thickness and designs of picks, I recommend a Dunlop Heavy pick teardrop design for the beginner guitarist. The standard design and thickness allows the beginner student easier gripping, and better control of how loud or soft the strings are played. If this cannot be found, any medium to heavy pick will do.

Metronome

MetronomeThe metronome is a device designed to mark exact time by a regularly repeated click of beats per minute. Since rhythm is the most important part of all music the metronome is an irreplaceable tool to teach the beginning to advanced student how to count and play their guitar in proper time. The metronome must have the starting pitch A440 that allows guitarists and bassists to tune their instruments properly. I recommend the Seiko Quartz metronome for its functional volume and pleasant sound. If it is not available, any digital metronome that has a dial from 40-200 beats per minute and the pitch A440 will do.

Music Stand

Music StandThe music stand is essential in teaching the student to read music and learn proper technique. The music stand should be adjusted slightly lower than eye level so that the student can see the top of the page when looking straight ahead. Any inexpensive music stand will work fine although the stronger music stands can hold more books at once and rarely if ever break or lose their ability to adjust at different heights.

Foot Stool

Foot StoolThe footstool provides a much more comfortable playing positioning for students at all levels. If the student is right handed and while sitting rests the guitar on their right leg he or she should place their right foot on the footstool. The opposite applies to left handed guitarists. Normally a footstool can be set at three different heights which allows the student to prop up their leg to an appropriate height that provides better balance and leverage for the fretting hand guitar and relieves pressure on the student’s shoulders and back.

Pencils

PencilsPencils are mandatory, no pens! I recommend wood # 2 pencils not mechanical pencils which are troublesome and break too easily. Music is ever changing and students will need to erase often when making notations in their music staff paper notebook. During weekly lessons please have sharpened pencils with good working erasers.

String Winder

Allows for fast and easy string changes.

String Winder