By Dhrubaa Ghosh, Oct 11, 2021 14:30
Here's a topic that is often discussed in music learning circles: self-teaching vs. graded lessons. Many guitarists take pride in claiming that they are self-taught. It’s a life-long feel good factor. They know they have learnt the way the instrument works on their own. On the surface, it sounds great. But it’s never true.
Why no one can be self-taught
A self-taught musician still has his or her own way of tuning and holding the guitar. He or she knows how to string a guitar, pluck the strings, sound chords. This means they have at least watched someone doing it. It could have been YouTube, a friend at school, or someone they knew. But that means they have been taught. Music, even if it’s learnt by observation, has to be learnt.
Why graded lessons can teach the same thing better
A graded lesson goes according to a plan, from stage to stage. At every stage, the student is getting a chance to make sure that everything that was taught has been learnt. Even when they see the teacher strumming a guitar, they are picking up lessons about rhythm, melody and song construction. And since the stages of learning have been created specifically by guitarists for guitarists, it helps the student grow from strength to strength in a shorter time.
Formal training unleashes creativity
A good teacher is strict, thorough and eager to learn. That means the student’s natural talent, creativity at improvisations and unique style are welcomed by the teacher. Formal training gives the young guitarist all the basics, like learning grammar in a language, and then they can write better poetry than an untaught genius.
Graded lessons open up possibilities
Planned guitar lessons take a young learner towards international exams, opportunities in taking up music as a career, performing in places they did not even know about. If your kid is serious about his or her guitar, lessons are needed. It’s exactly like putting a star student into a great school. He or she will flourish in ways that no one can guess right now. Playing the guitar is a skill, like learning to code. And a skill is always useful.