Guitar lessons with Pakachoag are currently available in Worcester on Wednesdays with faculty members Jeff Dostal and on Thursdays with Michael Stubblefield. We may have late morning, as well as afternoon and evening times available.
Michael is also available to teach Ukulele.
We offer instruction in all styles. Students wishing to study electric guitar should bring a small amp to their lesson each week.
Students should generally be around 7 years old to begin guitar lessons. Eight years is a more common starting age. Students younger than 8 years will require some parental support during practice and should be prepared to move slowly as they gradually master the basics.
We accept students of all levels, beginning to advanced. Adult students are also welcome.
While lessons are scheduled on a weekly basis during the school year, we will consider accepting adult students on an every-other-week basis if scheduling permits.
Summer lessons are available on an individual basis according to student and teacher availability. Please contact the office in April or May for information regarding summer lesson availability.
To get started, you may wish to submit this lesson inquiry form.
If you do not currently have a guitar, this article about how to choose a guitar may be helfpul. You may also want to google ‘nylon string vs. steel string guitar’ (or ask for more information when purchasing).
You can view more information about our Guitar teachers at our faculty page.
The National Center for Biotechnology Information published a study on the effectiveness of music to lower stress. The test involved putting volunteers into three groups. Before being exposed to a stressor, each group was exposed to a different stimulus. Group 1 – Relaxing music, Group 2 – the sound of rippling water, and Group 3 – resting with no sound present. After, their stress indicators were measured. The study showed that those who listened to relaxing music before the stressor had significantly lower cortisol (the stress hormone) levels than those in the other two groups.
The process of learning to play an instrument is not always easy. Music learning combines mental and physical skill sets. You will have to learn fingerings and/or chord shapes, develop technique, and memorize new information.
Slowly, with consistent practice, you will find yourself getting better. With each new milestone, you gain a small reward for your efforts and this will keep you motivated. Making music requires patience.
You don’t have to become a virtuoso to reap the benefits of music. You can gain many of these benefits by just learning the basics. You will develop a taste for the different composers, styles, and genres of music. Not only does this cause you to be more well-versed in music, but it also leads to a higher appreciation of the skill.
At its core, music is art.
Music is a language, and the more “words” you learn the more you will be able to say. You may discover along the way that you wish to create music of your own and express your own voice. Music is not just about knowing how to play specific songs, it is about expressing emotion through sound. Whether it is just playing your own version of a song, or creating an entirely new one, learning how to play an instrument enables you to use your creativity to say something original.
Check out this great video from TedEd about how music benefits your brain.
While investigating the effects of music, physiologists Daniel J. Levitin and Mona Lisa Chanda found that listening to music and playing an instrument increased the immune system. These activities lead to the manufacturing of the antibody immunoglobulin-A. Immunoglobulin-A is a natural killer cell, which kills viruses. If you start to feel under the weather, just pick up that guitar and start playing!
Music lessons, including guitar lessons, can improve time-management skills. Adding learning an instrument into an already busy schedule can be challenging, especially if you want to become an advanced player. The desire to get better will help you to schedule in practice during your already busy day. Practice techniques shared by your teacher will help you learn how to use time wisely and efficiently.
Way back in 2003, ABC Science included a study conducted among school students, half of whom had been musically trained, and half who had not. The test involved reading a list of words to the students and asking them to recall the words after a space of time had elapsed. The study found that the boys who had been musically trained had a significantly better verbal memory than the boys who had not. In addition, the more musical training they had, the more words they were able to remember.
No one (even the most gifted students) can effectively learn to play an instrument overnight. Making music requires work and a consistent investment of time and effort. Discipline is necessary to go through the process of consistent, focused practice. This discipline can carry over into other aspects of your life, elevating quality of life.
Another study in 2003 from the Journal of Neuroscience compared the brains of professional musicians, amateur musicians, and non-musicians. The study found an increase in gray matter in many areas of the brain of professional musicians. The amateur musicians had less grey matter in those areas, and the non-musicians had the least gray matter.