Class Details

  • Beginner
  • 5 Students
  • 10+
  • 45 mins.

What You'll Learn

  • How to play basic, major and minor chords
  • Fingerpicking, strumming, and rhythmic patterns
  • The importance of music theory
  • Chord progressions and songwriting
  • How to start playing your favorite songs

Weekly Curriculum

Thursday October 19th: Fingerpicking Basics On The Ukulele: Fingerpicking on a ukulele is one of the most soothing sounds we can make with our two hands. Like chimes in the wind it can bring us to a place of pure joy! At first the practice can seem daunting because of all of the notes flying in every direction but by breaking it down we will see that there is not that much to it. We will discuss how to figure out which finger goes with which string, I call it ‘marrying each finger to each string’, and how that can help simplify the process. To further simplify we start to compartmentalize the hands into separate categories, essentially putting the picking hand on autopilot. There are also a handful of fingerpicking patterns that everyone uses that I will teach you so you can implement them into your playing. From there we can explore and make up some fingerpicking patterns of our own, the possibilities are endless!

Thursday October 26th: How to read lead sheets: techniques to learn that will make it possible to learn any song, tips and tricks!

Saturday November 4th: Tuning and understanding how to play and strum simple chords

Saturday November 11th: Open position chords and simple strumming patterns

Saturday November 18th: Learning to play your favorite song

Saturday November 25th: Advanced strumming patterns and chords

Requirements

  • A reliable internet connection
  • A laptop or desktop computer if you’re joining from home - The Google Chrome web browser is recommended for computer users

  • A tablet or smartphone if you’re on-the-go - The TakeLessons app (for Android or iPhone) is required for smartphone users

  • A built-in or external webcam

Description

If you want to quickly pick up some essential skills for beginners, this online ukulele class is an excellent starting point. An expert instructor will teach you some of the most common chords and strumming patterns, as well as how to fingerpick!

You’ll also learn about scales, chord progressions, and more. Here are a few of the topics we’ll cover in this fun and interactive, group class. Join for free today and you’ll be on your way to playing some of your favorite songs on the ukulele in no time!

Understanding Your Instrument

When learning the ukulele for beginners, it’s essential to have a solid understanding of the instrument itself. Did you know that there are several different types of ukuleles? Ukuleles come in a few different sizes and understanding the strengths of each will help you decide which one is right for you.

For example, a tenor ukulele is a better choice for adults because it’s a little bigger in size, while a soprano is more suitable for children with its inexpensive cost and smaller size - making it easier for little hands to hold.

Once you have your ideal ukulele picked out, you’ll have to make sure it’s in tune before coming to class! In this online ukulele class, you’ll be playing in standard tuning, which is G – C – E – A. Your teacher will go over how to tune the ukulele if you need some assistance, and he’ll also recommend some of the best apps for tuning.

In addition, you’ll learn a little bit about music theory including scales, chord progressions, and rhythmic patterns - which will come in handy when you begin to practice ukulele strumming patterns and fingerpicking.

Basic Ukulele Chords

Ready to start playing some songs on the ukulele? Your instructor will dive right into the fun stuff, teaching you a set of the most common ukulele chords that will enable you to play hundreds of your favorite songs. Get ready to master C, Am, F, G, and C7 - five popular and essential chords on the ukulele.

These chords are used in almost every genre of music, including rock, jazz, blues, reggae, country, pop, and even hip-hop. But make sure that you’re playing them correctly! In this class, you’ll learn the dos and don’ts of forming chords on your instrument to ensure that you’re using proper technique.

Your teacher will also provide a few exercises to help you transition from chord to chord, while staying in a musical groove. Once you can move smoothly between each chord, you’ll be able to play entire songs on the ukulele!

After learning a set of essential ukulele chords, you’ll learn how to move them around in a few different ways to create your own music. Understanding chord progressions will be key to writing your own songs, and you’ll learn about this concept in class as well.

Ukulele Strumming Patterns

Without a unique strumming pattern, a majority of the most popular songs wouldn’t be very popular! While the chords you choose to play determine the emotion of a song, the strumming pattern adds flavor to that emotion.

Up and down strokes are the building blocks of strumming patterns. Combining them in different ways adds a unique spin on any set of chords. Some beginners find it difficult initially to make the upstroke, which is the upward movement of your hand across the strings, but there is an effective exercise that will make this movement feel more natural.

You’ll learn that exercise and more in this online ukulele class. When it comes to strumming patterns, consistency in your strokes is key. Your instructor will show you how to maintain fluidity in your strumming by understanding the concept of the “motor in the right hand.”

This little trick will help you break down the strumming patterns in your favorite songs so you can easily learn any of them on your own in the future. Once you feel comfortable with strumming, you can move on to fingerpicking!

Fingerpicking for Beginners

Fingerpicking on the ukulele adds a soothing and melodic sound to any song. In addition to strumming, it’s a great way to add a unique flair when writing your own music or doing a cover of a hit song.

Learning which finger goes with which string will greatly simplify the process of fingerpicking for beginners. In this class, you’ll discover how to “marry” each finger to each string, and compartmentalize your hands into separate categories.

Essentially, you’ll learn how to put your fingerpicking hand on autopilot. At first, fingerpicking can seem daunting because of all the different notes that are involved, but by breaking it down into smaller pieces it will get easier with practice.

Your instructor will teach you a variety of popular fingerpicking patterns that you can implement into your playing. You’ll start with “The House of the Rising Sun” and have a chance to create some of your own fingerpicking patterns as well.

In each class, the songs you’ll learn will be determined by the students’ overall musical preferences, so come prepared to share a little bit about your style - the possibilities are endless!

Teachers

To provide the greatest availability of start dates we have assigned multiple teachers to this class. All teachers will cover the same class material however their teaching styles may vary.
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Edwin I.
I am a professional teacher/studio musician/performer/producer with over 17 years of private teaching experience and a graduate of the University of Miami Studio Music and Jazz program in 2002. During 1996-98 I studied jazz guitar at the New World School of the Arts music program under the direction of J.B. Dyas and Dr. Roby George. Upon graduation, I was immediately accepted to the University of Miami jazz guitar program under the direction of Randall Dollahan. It was during this time that I also refined my skills as a classical guitarist and as a composer/arranger. In addition, I began passing my knowledge onto friends and eventually began working as a teacher.

My ability to play almost any genre of music is the fruit of past experience playing with an impressive variety of music groups, including jazz combos, symphony orchestras, Andean world music ensembles, and several rock and pop groups as well. As a studio guitarist I have recorded for various artists including Jaci Velasquez, Carlos Ponce, Alexandre Pires, and Noelia.
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Grant H.
My name is Grant and I’ve been helping students grow for almost 10 years now! How time flies! I started playing music at the age of 9 and have been in love with it ever since, staying active in my local music scene as an instructor, performer, manager and booking agent. I have also earned a degree in Creative Writing from Louisiana State University for all of the students wishing improve their writing skills.

I pride myself in taking a students learning needs and using that as my basis for their specific lesson plan, always on a case-by-case basis, tailored to each individual student. Everyone is at a different waypoint on their path so why would I use a predetermined formula to try and help them, am I right? I am excited to meet and grow with every single one of you, let's learn to love the life we have and let our studies become radiant!

Reviews

9 Reviews
Grant is a great teacher. He is wonderful with my 9 year old son. We love him!
Nicole and Chad
Feb 7, 2016
Grant continues to be an excellent teacher for this beginner ukulele player. It's been years since I have practices music, and he is so patient as I try to re-learn how to read and play music. I highly recommend him as a teacher, and I look forward to learning more disciplines from him (including meditation and astrology!)
leslie
Mar 11, 2016
Grant was so patient and so encouraging. I am crazy excited and looking forward to our next session!
Trudy
Mar 24, 2016
My first lesson was wonderful! Grant was able to aptly identify how to help me progress with my study, and challenged me in the right ways to move forward.

I'm looking forward to my next lesson!
alyssa
Mar 29, 2016
Grant is an amazing teacher. Veeeeery patient, encouraging and really flexible with scheduling lessons. He lives up to the hype in the reviews. I will definitely be continuing my lessons with Grant.
Brandie
Sep 23, 2016
I feel Grant can be whatever you need! After the first lesson, I was confused with music theory and he made it clear by the second lesson. He is very concise with his words and I really appreciate it as some teachers can talk your whole session away. I also asked to work on strumming techniques and he was quick to come up with new ones for me as well as explaining how I can create my own. He's fantastic!
Stephanie B.
Nov 30, 2016
Excellent Instructor, Took his time with me and was very patience. Looking forward to more classes with him.
Jennifer B.
Dec 27, 2016
Great Class today. Grant is so patient with me.
Jennifer B.
Jan 3, 2017
Grant was able to feel out my interest and musical level surprisingly quickly and get me going toward MY goal. I felt more comfortable than expected and came away encouraged in my goals. Looking forward to more.
Marti S.
Feb 3, 2017