Before you invest more time, money and energy into your guitar lessons you should know whether or not your guitar course in miracles truly understands how to teach effectively. Fact is, if you have a mediocre guitar teacher, you could be making ‘significantly’ slower progress than what you would make with a great guitar teacher! Here are the 7 things that your guitar teacher never told you (that you should know about):
1. “I don’t know how to teach anything besides 1 on 1 lessons.” It is not true that 1 on 1 lessons are the most effective format for learning or teaching guitar. Most guitar instructors will try to convince you otherwise and that will be your big clue that they have no idea what they are talking about. Teachers who say this have little or no experience teaching outside of the traditional 1 on 1 approach and are unaware of the MASSIVE benefits that their students can get when learning guitar in other effective formats.
2. “You probably won’t become a great guitarist by working with me.” Even if your guitar instructor has a lot of students, chances are high that few (if any) of these students are great guitarists who can play at a high level. So, if he/she doesn’t know how to teach other students to play guitar at a high level, you simply can’t expect to become a great guitarist yourself.
3. “I’m not very comfortable teaching advanced guitar concepts and am afraid you might get ‘too good’ for me to teach you.” There are few guitar teachers who can teach students beyond an intermediate level. In fact, many of them are afraid that you will get ‘too advanced’ and stop taking lessons because they can no longer offer valuable insight. Unfortunately, this means that a lot of teachers purposely hold back their guitar students, thinking that this is the only way to stay in business.
4. “I’ve never really been trained to teach people how to play guitar.” There are plenty of guitar instructors who have learned how to play guitar well for themselves, but VERY few who have actually learned how to TEACH. Being good at guitar and knowing how to teach it are totally separate issues and most guitarists who call themselves ‘guitar teachers’ are completely unqualified to do so. Personally, I find it strange that most guitar students never think of asking their guitar teachers for their experience of being ‘trained’ to teach guitar. Would you trust your doctor to perform surgery on you if he had never actually been trained to do it? Didn’t think so! This is a huge reason why there are so many mediocre guitar players… they learn from teachers who have no clue how to actually teach!
5. “Everything you will learn in your lesson today was thought up within the few moments it took you to sit down and pull out your guitar.” The vast majority of guitar teachers have zero training on how to teach guitar. On top of that, many of them have not even planned out what they are going to teach you from lesson to lesson. When was the last time you took a guitar lesson and felt like your guitar teacher had already prepared a specific plan to help you reach your musical goals? Chances are, you have never felt this way.
6. “I’m going to teach you using a GENERALIZED guitar instruction approach because I don’t really know how to help you reach your personal musical goals. This may or may not actually be helpful to you.” One of the most common ways that guitar teachers hide their lack of knowledge and experience is to use a generalized approach for everyone they teach. Almost every time I start training a guitar instructor, they ask me: “Tom, do you know any kind of methods I can use in my guitar teaching so I don’t have to worry about what I should teach my students every week?” The truth is, with the exception of total ‘beginners’, your guitar instructor MUST use a specific teaching strategy for each of his students (including you) in order to help them effectively improve and reach their goals.
7. “You want to become a creative guitar player? Sorry, I cannot teach you that… you’re either naturally creative or you’re not creative at all.” Just about every guitar instructor out there (falsely) assumes that creativity cannot be taught. These teachers believe that being able to play creatively on guitar is a gift that you were born with. If you take lessons from a teacher like this, you will never become a creative guitar player because your guitar teacher simply doesn’t know how to help you develop this skill. These teachers will only show you WHAT to play but never how to use it in actual music. Fact is, creativity is a skill that can be developed just like any other skill on guitar.