About the workshop

One day, one stop workshop!

Just one session will result in the whole class playing guitar together!

Pupils will find they can usually produce an acceptable sound on a guitar relatively quickly, without having to put in hours of practise. This makes our workshops accessible to pupils of all abilities.

Up to 40 guitars can be supplied for the day, plenty for everyone – even teachers!
The guitars we use are quality junior classical guitars (nylon strings). These are easier and safer for young students to play.

MEET MATT!

The workshops are led by Matt Tidswell who has been a full time peripatetic guitar tutor since 2007, working in schools across Cheshire and beyond.

He has experience working with primary and secondary school students, delivering lessons that range from one-to-one, to small ensembles and culminating in whole class projects.

Matt has undergone a DBS enhanced check, has completed a safeguarding course and is covered by Public Liability Insurance.

And yes he likes rock….a lot!

Depending on the duration and topic of the session, here is an outline of what to expect…

After a presentation, Matt will lead the class from how to hold the instrument, learning about the different guitar parts, playing strings, pressing on frets and finally on to playing along to music.

During the longer sessions, pupils can learn about many different elements of music, such as: melody, harmony, pitch, tempo, duration, dynamics and aural memory.

A performance/assembly can only be included with the full day for one class sessions.

Here are 3 popular options for your school, however if you have any specific needs please contact Matt. 

1. The WHOLE of key stage 2!
This gives many pupils the chance to learn the very basics about playing guitar.
Each session will last approximately one hour. This option has the potential to give many pupils there first lesson in guitar, it doesn’t take too much away from lesson time and it can be done in your class room.

2. One class for a full day, including performance!
This option is suitable for years 3 – 6. The class will learn to play several tunes, discover elements of music theory and perform to the school at the end of the day.
Parents are welcome at the discretion of the school.

3. Two classes, half a day each.
Each class will learn to play several tunes and discover some elements of music theory.

VARIOUS MUSIC TOPICS

Depending on your requirements we can offer various packages for the longer (half/full day sessions).

Please Note, all workshops will include playing guitar, the options below simply depend on what direction you would like the class to be led.
  • Elements of music – Explore through harmony and melody how music is created. The class will learn the meaning of: tempo, pitch, dynamics and many more musical terms. Pupils can also get creative and learn about composition through music scales.
  • Lets Rock! – Learn to play/perform pop and rock tunes. This option simply focuses on playing guitar and enjoying the music, featuring songs that pupils can immediately relate to.
  • Multi music genre – Learn about some of the different genres of music from classical to pop. Embark on a musical journey through history and hear how music has changed.
  • Guitar World Music – Discover a huge variety of unusual ethnic rhythms and melodies. Featuring music from Europe, Africa, South America, Asia and the Middle East.
  • Looping – Learn how to create a tune from the ground up, using a “Looping Station”. Artists like Ed Sheeran and KT Tunstall  regularly use loop stations. Professional beatboxers also use the technology. Children are completely amazed when introduced to looping, it allows them to build layers of music until it sounds like an entire band is playing at once.

F A Q’s

How long is needed to set up/pack away? It will take approximately 45 minutes to set up and 30 minutes to pack away.

Is the hall required ? Preferable, but not necessarily. We can work in class rooms but we need to make space by moving tables to the sides. Chairs need to have a reasonable space between them.

Do you have left handed guitars? No, not yet, Iv’e taught many people who are left handed to play the right handed way. As we are learning as a large group it can get confusing if beginner pupils have to reverse the instructions. Please contact me if you require more information on this. However, if there is a pupil that plays guitar and wants to bring in their own left handed guitar on the day, they are more than welcome to do that.

Some of our pupils have lessons/have their own guitars, can they bring them in on the day? Yes, they can have a chance to show the class what can play and help out during some of the tricky sections of the day. I would prefer acoustic guitars to electric though.

Do we need any musical knowledge or experience? No, everything will be explained thoroughly starting with how to hold a guitar. Prior to the workshop, it would be a big advantage to the class if they could practice clapping to the seconds of a clock, keeping in time together.

Can you link the workshop to our class topic? Yes, I just need prior notice to plan specific music and themes. In the past I have linked music to Space, Tudors, The USA, and World Music.

Are teachers or T.A.’s needed? Yes please, especially at the beginning.  Some stages can be a bit tricky at the beginning and would be better with 2 sets of eyes.

Is the workshop suitable for Key stage 1? Yes, but pressing on frets for long periods can give them sore fingers, I tend to focus on playing open strings with the younger years. I also have musical games and fun activities to keep them engaged.

Do we need any school equipment?  We only need a power socket and school chairs/benches set out with plenty of space around each one.

If we have small classes or 2 classes per year group, can the workshop still work? Yes! Please call to discuss your individual needs.

We have had whole class guitar workshops in the past, can you progress the class on to the next stage? Yes! Initially I need to assess the class has a few key skills, then we can move forward on to fresh exciting music.

Can the workshop work for adults? Yes, however the guitars are not full size. In the past Iv’e done workshops with parents and pupils, I think the adults enjoyed it more the kids did!

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