Beginning Guitar Curriculum


UNIT I - GUITAR BASICS

  • Learn how to read chord charts
  • Identify Major open chords on the guitar: G, C2, D, A7, Em
  • Learn how to read tabs on guitar
  • Play a major scale on the top of the guitar
  • Execute a simple chord progression
  • Perform songs with a simple strum pattern
  • Improvise using a Major scale pattern

Unit II - Strumming

  • Perform a D major scale
  • Learn the following open string chords: Em, A, C, D7
  • Perform basic chord progressions using the folk strum
  • Identify various forms of strum pattern notation
  • Perform Little Talks using the folk strum
  • Improvise a melody using a major scale

UNIT III - RHYTHM AND LEAD

  • Perform an A major scale
  • Learn the following open string chords: E, Am
  • Understand and execute both Rhythm and Lead guitar through improvisation and song performance
  • Perform the Lead part of "Wonderful Tonight"
  • Perform Wonderful Tonight using the folk strum
  • Perform within a small group
  • Improvise a melody using a major scale

UNIT IV - BLUES

  • Perform a G Blues Scale
  • Learn the following open string chords: G7, C7, B7, E7
  • Perform a 12 bar blues progression in G
  • Know the basics of blues terminology
    • Back beat
    • 7th chords
    • Blues Scale
  • Write lyrics for a 12 bar blues song
  • Improvise a melody using the blues scale
  • Perform an original blues song for the class

UNIT V - POWER CHORDS

  • Make the two basic power chord shapes
  • Play the following power chords: A, B, D, E
  • Perform a song using power chords
  • Perform basic bass and drum patterns for "I Love Rock and Roll" and "Blitzkrieg Bop"
  • Identify songs that use power chords

UNIT VI - FINGERPICKING

  • Perform a basic fingerpicking pattern (Travis picking)
  • Identify the bass note of a chord
  • Perform a song using finger picking techniques
    • The Beatles - Blackbird
    • Beach House - Zebra
    • Led Zepplin - Stairway to Heaven

UNIT VII - BAR CHORDS

  • Review the following chords: E, Em, A, Am
  • Learn the four fundamental bar chords
  • Perform a song that uses bar chords:
    • Paramore - That's What you Get
    • Train - Hey Soul Sister
    • Student Choice

UNIT VIII - FINAL PROJECT

  • Choose a song for your final project
  • Prepare a written (typed) page with relevant information about your song
  • Perform your song for the class in its entirety