Learn the five biggest mistakes parents make with guitar lessons, so you can avoid them during your child's free online guitar lessons for kids.

Guitar Lessons for Kids: Biggest Mistakes

Guitar lessons for kids can be one of the greatest gifts parents provide their children. After all, music improves children’s brain development, enhances their cognitive skills, and teaches them lifelong success skills.

However, even with the best intentions, parents often fall victim to common mistakes that can slow down their child’s musical studies or derail them altogether.

That’s why I put together this list of the five biggest mistakes parents make with guitar lessons, so you can avoid the most common pitfalls and help your child gain the most benefit from music lessons.

Below are the five most common mistakes parents can make with guitar lessons for kids. We go into each item in greater detail below.

List of 5 Biggest Mistakes

  1. They buy the wrong size guitar. There are three sizes to choose among.
  2. They don’t take the time to learn the basics. The fundamentals are important.
  3. They fail to establish a daily practice routine for their child. 15-minutes per day is a great starting point!
  4. They choose songs that are too hard. It’s important to choose beginner-friendly songs, especially for the first few weeks of playing guitar.
  5. They sign their kids up for too many activities. Choose a few activities that your kids enjoy and put the time to gain real skill over time.

Mistake #1. Buying the Wrong Size Guitar

Buying the wrong-size guitar is setting your kid up for failure instead of success. That’s because an adult-sized guitar is almost impossible for a kid to play. Music lessons are already challenging enough. You don’t need to make them any harder by supplying your child with an adult-sized guitar. Instead, use the chart below to buy the perfect guitar for your child.

guitar sizes for kids chart

Mistake #2. Not Taking the Time to Learn Basic Guitar Concepts

If you want to help your child get the most out of guitar lessons, then you’ll need to learn a few basic concepts for a guitar, like how to tune the guitar, the names of the open strings, and how to read the guitar tab.

That’s why I highly recommend you participate in the first few guitar lessons with your child. Doing so will provide you with the tools you need to help your child succeed on the guitar while developing a lifelong joy of music in the process. On the other hand, not taking the time to learn basic concepts on the guitar will prevent you from helping your child make musical progress.

If nothing else, absolutely make sure you learn how to tune the guitar!

Mistake #3. Failing to Establish a Daily Guitar Practice Routine for their Child

Learning to play the guitar is a lot like getting in shape. You gotta work at it if you want to lose weight and gain muscle. Music is the same way. It takes consistent, focused practice over a long period of time to develop musical skills.

Fortunately, you can start small, set realistic goals, and chain together small wins over a long period of time. That’s the path for success in music or any other endeavor. Fifteen minutes per day of practice is a great starting point. If that’s too hard, then start with five minutes a day and build from there.

Mistake #4. Choosing Songs that are too Hard

I can’t tell you how many parents I met who wanted to hear their six-year-old play “Stairway to Heaven.” While I hate to be the bearer of bad news, it’s a recipe for failure! The song is far too difficult for many experienced guitarists to play well, let alone a young child just getting started playing the guitar.

That’s why it’s so important to choose realistic goals. If you want to hear your child play a famous song, choose an easy song arranged on a single string instead.

“Smoke on the Water” by Deep Purple is the all-time classic first song guitarists learn to play.

Mistake #5. Signing their Kids Up for Too Many Activities

Over the years, I’ve seen many gifted young guitar students quit music lessons because their parents signed them up for too many activities. While I appreciate the desire to provide your children with lots of different activities, too many activities can interfere with your child’s musical progress.

Instead, focus on a few key activities that are rich, rewarding, and fun.

FREE Online Guitar Lessons for Kids

Your kid can get started playing the guitar the right way with award-winning guitar lessons for kids for FREE! Sign up for the Rock Dojo newsletter, and your child will receive three free online guitar lessons for kids. By the end of the three free online guitar lessons, your child will have a solid foundation for playing the guitar. If you want to take it a step further, you can take the free guitar mini-course with your kid!

Brian Parham
Brian Parham

Brian Parham is the founder and creator of the Rock Dojo, an award-winning guitar program for kids. He’s also the author of three guitar method books for kids, the 2018 Teacher of the Year by Lessons.com, the 2018 Rising Star of Oregon by the Small Business Administration, and an award-winning artist. He’s currently pursuing a Guitar Professional Advanced Certification from Berklee College of Music. When he’s not rocking out on the guitar, Brian enjoys reading comic books, binge-watching Cobra Kai, and spending time with his wife.

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