Studying the guitar at STES is a wonderful way to help foster in a child, the joy of learning. The satisfaction that each child experiences when they successfully take on a challenge and reach their goals is one of the many reasons this program is so valuable.
Here at STES, we prefer to start all pre-school aged children in our early music education classes to give them a good musical foundation before they move on to an instrument. Once they have this foundation, which includes listening to the music they will first learn to play on the guitar, they are prepared to move on to the instrument. Children who begin in our infant or pre-school music programs can start playing the guitar as early as 4 years old. Children who have not been in our pre-school music program and are six years and older can begin lessons on the guitar.
As with all instruments taught using the Suzuki philosophy, students learn to play the Twinkle variations and folk songs. This is the beginning of their musical journey. Because they will learn the first pieces by ear, the children can focus on their technique and tone. Daily listening to the recording is necessary so that the child can internalize the music. Once the basic technique is established, music reading is introduced on the instrument. This parallels the process children experience when they learn to read and write. Each student is allowed to progress at their own pace and emphasis is placed on mastering each step before moving to the next. Review of previously learned music is necessary as it allows the student to gain ability and develop skill in polishing their music.