Introducing Guitar for Children
A Group Course for Beginners Aged 6-8
‘An excellent music course for children. I’m delighted at the progress [my daughter] has made – as is she!’
– S. Murphy
Guitar is an excellent starter instrument for children. Melodic, harmonic and percussive, it is satisfying to play in itself and can also serve as a ‘gateway’ musical experience for other instrumental study. It’s easy to carry, simple to store and affordable. Best of all, children want to play it! Designed for absolute beginners, Waltons New School of Music’s 22-week Introducing Guitar for Children course enables young students aged 6-8 to experience early success (learning to play well-known tunes and songs in a short space of time) and have fun, while the curriculum guides them to broader musical development. The course includes melody playing, chord accompaniment, note reading skills and basic two-part solo playing.
Group learning has long been recognised as one of the most effective ways to teach children about music and instil positive lifetime attitudes towards both music and learning. A group environment provides children with the opportunity to make music together with friends and classmates, sharing common goals and skill. The interaction between students also encourages and promotes understanding, and children learn to assess their peers positively.
Children must have their own size-appropriate nylon-string (classical) guitars, to practice at home and bring to classes, for this course.
The New School also offers private (one-to-one) guitar lessons. See Guitar • Bass • Ukulele Tuition for more information.
Gary started to learn the guitar as a young child and soon began to explore bass guitar and ukulele as well. He began playing live with bands and vocalists in his early teenage years, enjoying everything from pub residencies to Aviva Stadium events, and playing a wide range of genres and guitar styles, including rock, pop, folk, metal, reggae, blues and jazz. Alongside cover gigs, Gary began writing his own music, and he was a finalist in RTÉ 2FM’s New Irish Music competition while still in secondary school; since then he has worked on a number of national and international projects. Writing and recording music developed Gary’s early interest in production, and he pursued this by studying at Ballyfermot College of Further Education, where he earned a diploma in music technology while working as a live sound engineer and recording EPs for local acts. He went on to study Music and English at University College Dublin, where he received a first class honours degree. As well taking numerous advanced modules in tonality and musicianship during his time in college, he also studied Non-Western music and joined the National Concert Hall Gamelan Ensemble, with which he has performed at Electric Picnic, the National Concert Hall and Leeds University. Gary is an experienced teacher of guitar, bass and ukulele, both privately and in groups; he has also taught Leaving Cert. Music and run workshops with a number of music schools. In addition to this course, he teaches our Introducing Guitar for Adults and Introducing Ukulele courses, as well as outreach guitar and ukulele classes for our Outreach Programme and Music at Work Programme
‘My daughter has attended Waltons for introductory guitar classes for almost two years and really enjoys it. Her teacher is great, very calm, encouraging and patient, and he doesn’t talk down to them. Every week I see progress and her personal pride in playing a little more accurately and fluidly each time. The atmosphere in the building from all staff is one of professionalism, kindness and welcome.’
– A. Campbell
‘[My son] really loved the class, and the teacher was able to channel his enthusiasm and encourage it.’
– J. Donnelly
‘My daughter looks forward to her class each week. She learned so quickly how to read music. The teacher is very good with kids.’
– A. Niklas
Has your child taken – or is he/she taking – this course? We would appreciate it if you could take a few moments to give us your feedback in a brief online questionnaire about it.
2017-2018 Class Schedules & Fee
22 weeks, 23 September 2017 – 24 March 2018
(No classes 4 November, 23 December – 6 January, 17 March)
Saturdays 11 am – 12 pm
Saturdays 12 – 1 pm
Tuition fee: €370
Our 2018-2019 class schedules will be available from May 2018.
Enrolment for this course requires a completed Enrolment Form and full payment of the course fee or course + instrument fee. Places in each class are limited to eight, and are available on a first-come, first-served basis, based on the date of enrolment. Most of our group courses are fully booked well in advance of their start dates, so early enrolment is recommended.
Purchasing this course as a gift?
Please complete a Gift Certificate Booking Form.
Two weeks before the end of each ‘Introducing’ course, parents will be given options for continuing their children’s tuition at the school if they would like to do so. Although a continuation ‘Improvers’ course cannot generally be scheduled on the same day/time as the Introducing course, one can be arranged if enough students would like to continue and the teacher has timetable availability. Students can also continue their tuition with private (one-to-one) lessons or ‘partner’ lessons with another class member (see Tuition Options – Private • Partner • Small Group Lessons). We are happy to discuss these options with you.