Electric Guitar lessons For Kids
Which guitar should I buy?
This is a question that most parents ask when their child is first starting out. More often than not, parents are concerned with getting value for money, particularly if the child has only recently taken an interest in the guitar. Thankfully, modern technology in guitar manufacturing has made it possible for most budget guitars to be of reasonable quality. We’ve recommended some brands in the links below.
Besides budget, there are really only two things to consider:
1. Guitar size.
2. Guitar type.
Guitar sizeGuitars are generally made to be either full size, ¾ size or ½ size.
For most kids above the age of 12, a full size guitar is probably the best option, particularly given their rate of growth at that age.
¾ size guitars are more suited to 7-11 year olds, and half size for 6 and under.
Having said that, the best way to determine the right guitar size for your child is to have them try a few out. Many kids start lessons on a full size guitar right away, regardless of their age.
Essentially, the aim should be to buy a size that is going to help rather than hinder your child.
There are 3 main types of guitars: Nylon acoustic, Steel-string acoustic and Electric (steel strings)
For beginning children we recommend either a nylon acoustic or electric guitar.
The advantages of buying a nylon guitar are that for young fingers, the strings are relatively soft compared to the steel strings found on electric and steel string acoustics. The tension of these strings tends to be fairly low (more slack) which also helps young fingers.
Probably the most common type of guitar used around the world, the nylon acoustic needs no amplification, which many parents see as an advantage in terms of household volume levels.
A basic, reasonable nylon can be bought for around $100.
Every budding young guitarists dream! The electric guitar is cool, and kids know it. More than likely your child will ask you for an electric guitar straight away, which isn’t such a bad idea, and here’s why: Electric guitars usually have a slimmer neck, particularly in the first 3 frets, which make it easier for kids to get their hands around. The tension on the strings tends to be pretty low, as is the action (the distance between the strings and fretboard). These qualities combined can really assist the rapid growth of a young guitarist.
An electric guitar needs an amplifier and guitar lead, and most music stores now offer guitar/amp/ lead/ strap/ pick packages for around $300 or under. We’ve recommended some online stores below.
There are a few reasons not to buy an electric guitar: for some kids, the steel strings are simply too harsh on their fingers. These kids are better off starting on a nylon guitar. There’s also the cost involved with purchasing an electric guitar. Depending on your child’s dedication to learning the guitar, it may be better to buy them a nylon guitar first, and then let them prove that they’re ready for an electric guitar after a few months of practice and dedication.
Steel string acoustic guitar:
This is the least child friendly guitar to learn on. It’s a beautiful instrument, but the harshness of the steel strings on little fingers, combined with high string tension tend to make playing painful rather than enjoyable.
Other guitar related equipment:
You’re child will need a guitar pick (plectrum) and if they’re playing an electric, a guitar strap, amplifier and guitar lead.
A thin type pick is better for beginners. It’s a good idea to buy a few as they tend to lose themselves.