Reply To: Some questions for guitar teachers

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I have been anxious to ask some general things of the guitar teachers out there…Please answer any one of these questions, or all of them if you want!

1. What is the most anticipated guitar event of the year for your students? Why?
1a. All students enjoy field trips. Guitar kids do too! We have made a practice of traveling across the state to participate in guitar festivals and perform as a large guitar ensemble. Students really enjoy seeing how astonished people are by the type and quality of the ensemble.
1b. The Washington State solo and ensemble contest and the regional guitar solo and ensemble that allows students to perform as soloists and in small and large ensembles. Teenagers really enjoy competition if its done in a fun and healthy way.

2. What unit have you taught (and at what level) that has really resonated with your students?
2a.Teaching high school students about basic music theory and how to relate it to their instrument in order to increase fretboard fluency and knowledge is always a skill that committed guitarists seem interested in attaining.

3. What has been the most helpful support you have ever received from your parents or administration?
3a. Administrators that have recognized the transformational power of having guitar education available to students have been awesome. A handful of principals and higher admins have observed the type of student who tends to be attracted to the guitar and have witnessed remarkable development in them.

4. Does your program play for school or community events? Tell us about them!
4a. I have students play in the community a lot. They enjoy it and it provides a tangible goal to work toward. Past events have included playing at guitar festivals, the Washington State Music educators conference, and things such as playing in the lobby during intermission at the local symphony concerts. Frequently we will go to pizza after, etc. which gives kids a chance to build community with other group members.