We’re bored! What can we do now?! I hear a million times a day from my children. My son started a new hobby this year and it’s really given him a boost – learning to play the guitar.
My 10 year old son has tried to learn the guitar before. A few years ago he saw a musician playing a guitar on a holiday we were on and asked to learn. We bought a cheap second hand guitar from a facebook selling site and he started having lessons in school. The lessons were short and in a group and he really didn’t make much progress so his interest waned and he eventually asked to stop. The guitar has spent the last year under his bed untouched.
Then I heard of a local Hull based guitar teacher, Richard Silvester, doing 121 lessons for children over zoom during lockdown. With nothing else to do we booked in for a first trial lesson (first lesson is free!) and my son rather reluctantly said he’d try again.
Richard is a musician; he plays guitar at events and occasions, as well as teaching all ages to play and being an examiner, so he really does know his stuff.
The lessons can be an hour or 30 minutes, we opted for 30 minutes to start with. Richard introduced himself and found out a bit more about what my son could do. As he is very much a beginner Richard started with basics but by the end of the lesson he had taught him the 4 main chords and the start of a simple song. He was very patient and encouraging and emailed over some chord sheets and things to practice afterwards. We seemed to have learned more in that half hour 121 lesson than in all the months of him learning at school.
I was genuinely really impressed with how the lesson went but most impressed by my son’s reaction, he came off the lesson absolutely buzzing. As he had learned so much he was keen to start practicing straight away and he’s picked his guitar up a lot since the lesson. Now when he says he’s bored I say practice your guitar!
I asked my son to write what he thought about the lesson and these are his words…
What I liked about Richard is that he’s friendly, easy to talk to and just really nice in general. Another thing I liked was he didn’t jump straight into the lesson. He gave me a chance to introduce myself and I let him do the same. Even though it was my first time, I still learnt an awful lot of new things from my first week. I would recommend Richard to anyone who was learning guitar before lockdown but had to stop and is looking for a new teacher or anyone who would like a new hobby to do.
UPDATE! We are now 6 months into lessons and I cannot believe how much my son has learned already. We’ve continued lessons online so it’s great to do something that doesn’t involve me driving him there, waiting, driving home again. He can play a repertoire of songs and he even mastered all of ‘happy birthday’ to play for me on my birthday! Each week Richard is mixing practicing chords with learning songs and it’s really keeping his interest up. Richard has said that he is already ready for his first guitar exam if he wants to do those. I really like that it’s a lesson once a week but something to do every day, he often goes up to his room and plays and it is much nicer to hear that than to hear myself yelling ‘get off Fortnite’!
We look forward to the lesson, it’s the highlight of our week!
Now is the ideal time to learn to play an instrument. Richard teaches children of all ages and he also does adult lessons if any parents fancy giving it a try! Lessons start at £16. We’re going to continue with more lessons and hopefully carry on this journey and his new love of guitar.