Learning Piano and Guitar Using GarageBand

Learning Piano and Guitar Using GarageBand

Learn guitar and/or piano with GarageBand, your very own music teacher

Homeschooling your children has many advantages. They not only receive an excellent education where your child excels at various subjects, but they are also taught by you, a dedicated teacher, who gives one-on-one attention to grow your child’s mind. Each subject is tailored to the child’s personality and capabilities so that they prosper and thrive, while also benefiting from non-traditional ways of learning. One such example is music lessons. Guitar and piano lessons are two of the most common instruments used in homeschooling studies and musical education helps expand a child’s mind, creativity and development as a whole. 

Research has shown that music can facilitate better learning in other subjects and can enhance their skills, while also fostering a child’s language development. When you learn an instrument, your brain works harder and differently than a non-musician. A child that learns an instrument like piano or guitar have improved sound discrimination and fine motor tasks than those who don’t, further demonstrating the benefits of musical education in the homeschooling environment.

Providing Piano or Guitar Lessons In Your Homeschooling Plan

Now, you can either hire a professional to come and give your child lessons, or you can teach them yourself, using a variety of materials, such as YouTube videos, books and videos. And you can even use Apple’s popular music program GarageBand. Many only know that GarageBand is a studio app, but not many know that they offer free lessons. 

Those who are familiar with Apple products or who have a Mac computer at home are probably familiar with the software that comes standard with Mac computers, which is a fully equipped music creation studio on your desktop or laptop computer (there are also iOS apps for tablets and phones, however, learning how to play piano or guitar isn’t a feature on these apps; you need to have a Mac computer to do so). 

GarageBand features a complete sound library that includes presets for voice and guitar, instruments and a wide selection of session percussionists and drummers – so it’s like a professional studio in the convenience of your own home! But don’t get too scared if it sounds too advanced because the program also has the ability to teach your child piano or guitar without having to pay for music lessons.

GarageBand Features

There is an amazing collection of built-in lessons for these two instruments, allowing your children to incorporate music lessons into their everyday homeschooling activities. And when your child has learned the basics and continues to grow their musical skills, the program also offers the chance to learn some Multi-Platinum hits from the actual artists who recorded them. After all, who better to help them than the recording artist themselves! And the best part about it all is that your child will get instant feedback on their playing so that they can really hone in on their musical abilities. 

Even if your child has some basic knowledge of playing the piano or guitar, GarageBand can help them take their skills to the next level. There are 40 different genre-based lessons, which include pop, classical, blues and rock – further exposing them to various genres to expand their musical knowledge. Each of the program’s video demos are interesting and fun to go over thanks to animated instruments that are easy to follow – even for younger students barely getting introduced to these instruments! 

What Each GarageBand Lesson Includes

Children learn either piano or guitar through a series of lessons on GarageBand, and each lesson includes a number of helpful features that help increase the retention of knowledge. Each lesson includes:

  • A learning section that’s taught by the program’s teacher. They give instructions on how to play a song, certain techniques that help make playing better/easier and how to tune the instrument if necessary. 
  • A play chapter that allows students to play the song without any instruction or practice sessions. This is usually done after the student has learned from the instructor. 
  • Depending on the lesson, some chapters include a practice section that provides specific exercises students can practice, including things like riffs and other techniques. 
  • Chapters taught by the artist, which include a story chapter with background information on the song or artist. 
  • Some lessons also feature subchapters that vary from “Simple” and “Advanced,” depending on the student’s abilities. 

Customizing Lessons

When playing along with the various lessons, students can easily slow it down so that they can learn a difficult passage at their own pace. The lessons can be slowed down as much as half the speed of the original so that students can really hone in on what’s being taught. Then, they can increase the speed gradually as they practice the passage until they can resume normal viewing speed. This helps students with various learning capabilities, further tailoring these GarageBand music lessons to their skills. 

Changing the Mix of Lessons

Students can also change the mix of instruments when studying a “Learn to Play” lesson to either hear, the teacher, the instruments in the band or just their own instrument easier. This is especially helpful after the student has practiced the lesson so that they can mute the teacher’s instrument so that they only hear their own as they play along with the band. 

Additional Lessons

While the lessons are free for certain artists, you do have the option of purchasing more lessons from more modern-day artists that your kids might enjoy playing with for a nominal fee. These lessons are the same as the others but just expand on the songs your child will learn. 

But no matter how you look at it, GarageBand is a wonderful resource for homeschooling environments that will teach children how to play two of the most common instruments at no cost to you (you’ll just have to purchase the Mac computer, but you’ll be able to use it for a number of other things related to homeschooling)!


GarageBand For Mac


Photo Credit: nick.amoscato Flickr via Compfight cc
Learn Guitar and Piano Using GarageBand
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