I recently realized that I’ve made a mistake by mostly ignoring homeschool music learning. Since M didn’t show any special interest in music, I just let it slide.
Thankfully, it’s never too late to learn how to play an instrument and there are so many options today, saving you time and money: from apps to online lessons or even getting a private tutor.
Today, I’ll review an online program that worked great for M so far, in learning how to play the guitar 🎸.
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- My Rock Online
- What we like about My Rock Online
- Why homeschool music learning is Important
- 1. Music allows self-expression
- 2. Boosts self-confidence
- 3. Improves social interaction
- 4. Builds resilience, patience and focus
- 5. Improves coordination and memory
- 6. Helps improve academics
- Over to You
My Rock Online
We all know music lessons can be boring: all that theory and nothing fun until you’ve mastered it.
My Rock Online is different. It’s an online platform for learning music in a fun way. No boring theory lessons! Kids learn directly how to play popular songs that they like. The instructors are very knowledgeable and they slip music theory unnoticed throughout the process of learning how to play a new song.
Unlike most online platforms or pre-recorded videos, My Rock Online offers live classes for feedback and extra help. Real rock musicians that perform in bands teach every lesson. How fun is that!
🎸Having fun during lessons is guaranteed. 🎸
Once you subscribe, you have access to an online library of pre-recorded lessons with video instruction și pdf support for the songs.
Once per week, children meet with their instructor live, for about half an hour to review what they’ve grasped and to learn new things.
After class, kids can find their homework online. Each homework has pre-recorded videos of their instructor showing them what they need to practice, step by step. Kids can practice as much as they want and if they get stuck, they can re-watch the online recording of the teacher as many times as they need to.
Payment and Free lesson!
If you want to try My Rock Online, they offer one free live lesson and by creating a free account, you have access to the free lesson section on their website.
A month of lessons costs $99 (March 2022 pricing) and kids get access to 2 lessons per week: one live lesson and one weekly recorded lesson.
Music lessons available
There are several instruments to pick from with My Rock Online and even a Vocals class.
You can see their offer and meet the teachers aici. You can choose from:
- Guitar 🎸
- Bass 🔊
- Drums 🥁
- Vocals 🎶
I love that they offer an option for drums as well! We will definitely try these out next, because M is a fan of drums.
M chose guitar because it was something he always liked (but never pursued). He likes songs from AC/DC. In fact, he likes rock music so much that when we drove to the seaside 2 years back, that’s all we heard for the long drive there and back 🤣.
When he was little, he kept saying he wants to learn to play electric guitar and I have gotten him one mini electric practice guitar. He never used it much, so I just let things slide.
Now was the perfect opportunity to take out the regular guitar and join our awesome instructor, James. Our guitar is adult-sized, and it’s a Fender Acoustic guitar for beginners.
M is learning guitar for only 2 weeks and he can already play parts of “Back in Black” and “Smoke on the Water“. I am very impressed with his evolution. If you want to hear him play, check the video embedded in this post.
What we like about My Rock Online
I really didn’t have big expectations after just a couple of live classes and some hasty practice late in the night. But I am very impressed with the progress I’ve seen so far.
M has gone from not knowing how to hold a guitar properly to being able to play some tunes and understanding the first chords.
Here are more things I like about My Rock Online:
🎸 The live lessons are short și class size is small (2-3 kids)- the classes only last 30 minutes, so it’s not overwhelming for the kids. This is perfect for busy homeschool families as well.
🎸 James, our guitar instructor, is very patient. I like that he takes time to make sure kids understand the chords to play and play them correctly before moving on. He even offered a remedial class for M because he seemed to struggle and had difficulty in keeping up with the rest of his group.
🎸 Fun songs– unlike most programs, the songs they learn are from well-known rock bands so the kids are excited to be able to play what seems like a complicated song. They learn a new song every 2 weeks.
🎸 Practice opportunities are flexibilă– I love that the homework and practice lessons are recorded so we can watch them as many times as needed, whenever we have time for it.
🎸 Homework handouts – I like the fact that children learn to read music as well, and that it’s all available for us to download from the online portal. Very handy to have them all in one place.
🎸 M is more patient– I haven’t seen him sit down and practice something again and again until now. I am thrilled with our choice because it reflects in other areas of our homeschooling. Since he is playing the guitar, I’ve seen other good changes in him:
- M’s writing is neater
- his resilience is slowly building up
- he doesn’t quit as fast as he used to
Our rating: 5 out of 5 stars.
If you want to see how M learned to play guitar ( and a short glimpse into the classes and whole program), I made a video presenting what we like about My Rock Online and why I feel music is important.
Why homeschool music learning is Important
Before I close this, I have to mention the importance of music learning for children.
There are numerous studies that show the importance of music for children. Here’s a list of studies that I could find, supporting teaching and exposing children to music and learning an instrument:
- Music Interventions and Child Development: A Critical Review and Further Directions
- Neural Dynamics of Improved Bimodal Attention and Working Memory in Musically Trained Children
- Cognitive Control in Auditory Working Memory Is Enhanced in Musicians
During my research, I discovered several that all point to the importance of exposing children to music and notably encouraging them to learn how to play at least one instrument.
There are so many reasons why learning to play an instrument is good for children, but here are only 6.
1. Music allows self-expression
Music is a way of expressing ourselves. We all have this need and it comes in handy especially as children meet new feelings that they can’t communicate easily or overcome. Music is a great way to express and control your feelings.
2. Boosts self-confidence
There’s no doubt a boost in self-confidence when you can finally play your favorite song for the first time. There’s always a learning curve associated with learning how to play an instrument and it’s difficult. That’s why satisfaction is great in succeeding in something that requires sustained effort, energy, and time.
3. Improves social interaction
The benefit of getting a tutor or offline music lessons for your kids is that they interact with another teacher. Learning groups provide peer-interaction opportunities as well.
Even online classes like My Rock Online are great because they have live online classes where children interact with the teacher and their peers.
4. Builds resilience, patience and focus
This is the main reason that I felt we NEEDED to start music learning asap.
M is bright (possibly gifted) so learning comes easy to him. That also means he isn’t used to putting any effort into learning and I’ve been seeing this as a problem of his more and more. Every time he hits something challenging, he immediately quits. I realized he has no resilience and patience to work in order to achieve something.
This is harmful not only for his academics but for his self-esteem as well. It surprised me to hear him say he hates math because he has a math-oriented brain and loves thinking logically. But the lack of resilience and the fact that he is unused to working hard to understand things made him think he isn’t good at math.
My Rock Online came into our lives just in time to prevent further damage to his self-esteem and I love seeing him grab his guitar and practice the song he’s been learning for the 10th time in a row. This was a skill he needs to learn and nurture.
5. Improves coordination and memory
Learning how to use their fingers while keeping a pace will improve their hand-eye coordination. Kids need to recall or read the notes in order and this improves long and short-term memory.
M doesn’t really learn things by heart and I am not an advocate for rote learning. But in learning how to play the guitar he is constantly storing and retrieving memories in a fun, creative exercise.
6. Helps improve academics
It’s well known that music is patterns, symmetry, and math. Studies have shown that children engaged in musical activities constantly score higher than their peers in math, language arts and science.
We all know music has calming effects on the mind and body. Engaging in music helps relax the brain but also opens it up for better focus and retention.
Over to You
Do you encourage homeschool music learning? What instruments do your children play? I’d love to hear from parents that have been doing this. Let me know in the comments.
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