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Introduction to Guitar

$99.00 (USD)

Offered in partnership with De Anza College choose another school



A new session of each course opens each month, allowing you to enroll whenever your busy schedule permits!

How does it work? Once a session starts, two lessons will be released each week, for the six-week duration of your course. You will have access to all previously released lessons until the course ends.

Keep in mind that the interactive discussion area for each lesson automatically closes 2 weeks after each lesson is released, so you’re encouraged to complete each lesson within two weeks of its release.

The Final Exam will be released on the same day as the last lesson. Once the Final Exam has been released, you will have 2 weeks plus 10 days to complete the Final and finish any remaining lessons in your course. No further extensions can be provided beyond these 10 days.

Week 1
Lesson 01 - Start Making Music With Your Guitar
In your first lesson, we'll talk about the fundamentals for making music with a guitar. You'll get to know your instrument, realize the benefits of the proper playing position, explore methods for tuning, and discover how to achieve the correct right-hand position. You'll also learn a few playing techniques for producing clear, beautiful notes. This is the first step toward becoming a guitar player. By the end of the lesson, you'll be sitting comfortably and playing notes on your guitar!
Lesson 02 - Beautiful Tone and Rhythm
Want your guitar to sound as beautiful as it looks? In this lesson, you'll learn basic techniques for creating beautiful-sounding notes when you play. We'll be talking about basic music notation and rhythmic note values—and I'll teach you how to interpret these rhythmic note values so you can play your music in rhythm. By the end of this lesson, you'll be reading and playing guitar music!
Week 2
Lesson 03 - Open Your Mind to Open Strings
In this lesson, you'll learn how to identify bass and treble string notes on the music staff, and I'll teach you the concept of arpeggios for finger picking the bass and treble strings. We'll explore how to play simple music studies in rhythm, and we'll discuss how to recognize new music notations and rhythmic values. Of course, you'll have multiple opportunities to apply these new understandings throughout this lesson, and you'll continue to develop your overall proficiency.
Lesson 04 - Playing Music With Your Left Hand
You've got the right hand down. Now it's time to learn about your left hand. In this lesson, I'll teach you how to establish the correct left-hand position and the details that go into pressing your left-hand fingers against the strings. You'll also learn to identify the E1 string notes on the music staff and you'll begin playing simple exercises that include open strings. I'll also introduce you to stretching exercises that will enhance the range of motion in your fingers. And we'll discuss a few new music notations and terms!
Week 3
Lesson 05 - Playing Music on the E1 and B2 Strings
In this lesson, you'll discover new notes on your B2 string, and you'll explore the details that go into creating harmony between the B2 and E1 string notes. I'll show you how to combine your newfound notes together with open strings to play more complex music, allowing you to improve your skill level. You'll also learn about the musical term legato, the facing repeat sign for music with multiple endings. And you'll discover a new time signature, the concept of the pick-up note.
Lesson 06 - Playing Music on the E1, B2, and G3 Strings
Today, we'll begin by focusing on the G3 string. You'll learn notes on the G3 string, be able to identify their location on the music staff, and then practice creating harmony between all three treble string notes to play more beautiful music. You'll learn about rests and their corresponding symbols, find out about music in two voices, and discover techniques that will allow you to gain more control over the way your music sounds.
Week 4
Lesson 07 - Sharps and Flats in New Rhythms
We're going to discuss accidentals (sharps and flats) in music today. You'll learn to identify their symbols and apply them to play more interesting and beautiful music. You'll also learn about sixteenth notes and the associated rest symbol, and I'll give you an exercise so you can apply this rhythmic value. We'll conclude the lesson by examining a scale and discussing why scales are important to your development as a guitarist.
Lesson 08 - Playing Two Notes Together
This is where things begin to get exciting! In this lesson, we'll examine techniques for playing two notes together. You'll discover a new time signature and various ways of playing this rhythm in music. You'll learn how to use guide and pivot fingers to create smooth chord transitions. And you'll continue to build on your skills by learning new music and right-hand exercises.
Week 5
Lesson 09 - Understanding Open String Equivalents
We're going to discuss open string equivalents today, and you'll learn to identify their location on the music staff and on the fret board. We'll also take a look at a few new notes, and you'll discover other possible ways of playing two notes together to further understand the value of playing with correct right-hand fingering. We'll examine how to read other repeat markings and signs that direct you through the music. And finally, we'll conclude with a technical exercise to help build coordination and develop stretch range in your fingers!
Lesson 10 - Tempo Terms and Volume Control
Today, you'll learn more about tempo and how it's used to create musical expression. You'll continue to build on your understanding of correct left- and right-hand fingering, we'll examine triplets, and you'll learn how to count and play this new rhythm in various time signatures. We're also going to discuss volume in this lesson, and you'll experience how to use volume to add expression to your music. And, of course, you'll continue to develop your overall coordination. See you on the inside!
Week 6
Lesson 11 - Volume and Musical Expression
In today's lesson, you'll learn about dynamic markings so that you can further express your music. We'll examine the technique for playing three notes together, and you'll continue to build on your understanding of correct right-hand fingering. You'll also discover ways to minimize unwanted sounds that naturally occur when you're playing, and you'll practice a new exercise that will help to increase your skill level.
Lesson 12 - Playing Expressive Music
In your final lesson, I'll introduce you to dynamic tempo terms that will help you artistically express your music. You'll find out how accenting notes can define the melody and reveal other hidden voices in the music to add nuance and interest. You'll discover how to play four notes together, and we'll discuss techniques for strumming through the strings so you can finish a song with flare. I'll also leave you with a final song that incorporates many of the terms and techniques you've learned in this course so you can continue practicing and improving your skills!




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