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View Full Version : Teaching a basic uke workshop, help needed!



RyanMFT
05-11-2010, 05:58 PM
Hey Everyone!
I have put together a ukulele workshop at the university where I work in celebration of Asain/Pacific Islanders Month! We got funding for 10 ukes, and I bought 10 Makala dolphin ukes and I will teach basics to whomever shows up next week!

I need a little help. I want to put some basic chord diagrams up on the wall, like C, G7, F, ect... I am not real tech savvy so does anyone have open chords that you could send me in a word document? I am looking for one chord for each page. I can then make it larger at the office.

My plan is to show people how to hold the uke, how to hold a chord with left hand, and how to strum with the right. I want to help them play one or two basic songs and work with each person who shows individually (I have myself and another experienced player to demonstrate). Any other thoughts and suggestions would be greatly appreciated as I have to put this together quickly and I have never taught before!

Thanks!
Ryan

whetu
05-11-2010, 06:08 PM
http://www.kiwiukulele.co.nz/freestuff.html

Go for the template option, it has all the chords you'll need and more in individual images. If you get to the point of teaching D and E, this is indispensable:

http://www.kiwiukulele.co.nz/images/KUKEp20.pdf

Harold O.
05-11-2010, 06:20 PM
My suggestion is to keep everything very simple. Explain that certain notes form certain chords and that certain chords go together, but don't bog them down with WHY at this point. Show them how to make a couple, then show them how to switch between the two (or three), then show them how to play a song with those chords.

Keep it simple. You can do this.

Uncle Rod Higuchi
05-12-2010, 04:30 AM
Below my signature are a couple of links you are free to use and duplicate for your class.

I suggest that you 'work 'um hard' to gain mastery over forming and changing chords in time
with a regular beat. If/when they can do this, they'll be ready to play any song using those chords.

They will probably be impatient about getting to playing songs, but remind them that craftsmen
need to learn how to use their tools before they can make works of art/furniture/etc.

The ukulele is a tool to make pleasing sounds. Beginners need to learn how to create those pleasing sounds
using their ukulele. Remember these are foundational skills. The better they learn them, the more prepared
they'll be for any future ukulele endeavors.

Collect several familiar songs using the chords you'll be teaching. You won't have to go through all of them.
If they leave with the basic skills of recognizing chords by name, being able to form them properly on their ukes,
being able to change from chord to chord in time with the rhythm of the song, and able to strum up and down
in time with the music, they'll appreciate leaving with a songbook they can grow into.

I hope this helps,

SailingUke
05-12-2010, 04:43 AM
Ditto on Uncle Rod's suggestion.
I have been teaching classes chord progressions without the song, when they can move from chord to chord we move to humming the melody while strumming.
The last thing we do is add the lyrics. The class learns a song and some ear training all at the same time.

jer989
05-12-2010, 06:22 AM
... I am not real tech savvy so does anyone have open chords that you could send me in a word document? I am looking for one chord for each page. I can then make it larger at the office....

I know (and may have a copy) of a font that, for example, if you type 'A', you get a little picture of the 'A' chord - the thing is that since it's a font, you can put it into any word processor program (like MS word) and then just make the font size really big so at to scale it up and make it larger. Just a thought

SailingUke
05-12-2010, 06:32 AM
I know (and may have a copy) of a font that, for example, if you type 'A', you get a little picture of the 'A' chord - the thing is that since it's a font, you can put it into any word processor program (like MS word) and then just make the font size really big so at to scale it up and make it larger. Just a thought

wow !! what a resource where might it be?

RyanMFT
05-12-2010, 07:46 AM
This is all SUPER helpful, thank you everyone! I am excited about doing it. Some students just came to take my picture so they could animate it and put that on the ads. for the workshop!

JER989, that would be great if you have it, I will PM you with my email. Again, everyone thank you. Seems like the more I invest in the ukulele, the more it gives back to me and to those around me!

Of course, any other thoughts people have are most welcome!
Ryan

SailingUke
05-12-2010, 08:08 AM
wow !! what a resource where might it be?

Thank goodness for Google, look what I found !!!!!!!!!
www.ukefarm.com/chordette/

Ukulele JJ
05-12-2010, 10:03 AM
For just a couple of simple chord diagrams, you could simply draw them by hand on a whiteboard or flip chart.

That's what I'd do, anyway. And then print out a bunch of chord charts to hand out to the students to keep.

JJ


P.S. When I went to college (the first time), they actually had these wooden slat-thingies with metal fingers you'd put five pieces of chalk in. Then you'd drag it across the chalk board to instantly get a musical staff. And then we'd walk back to our caves, fighting off dinosaurs along the way...

jer989
05-12-2010, 01:52 PM
SailingUke: yup, Chordette (http://www.ukefarm.com/chordette/) is the font that makes chord diagrams.

Also, if you go to http://www.kiwiukulele.co.nz/freestuff.html and go to the right side of the page, you'll see "The Kiwi Ukulele Song Template" which is a .zip file that is filled with JPEG images of all possible chord charts that you can print as-is, or paste into words documents, etc to make your own song sheets.

I have Chordette font also available to download here (http://www.box.net/shared/6hdk3calqr), and The Kiwi Ukulele Song Template available to download here (http://www.box.net/shared/y697c1g9tl) as well.

whetu
05-12-2010, 11:17 PM
Also, if you go to http://www.kiwiukulele.co.nz/freestuff.html and go to the right side of the page, you'll see "The Kiwi Ukulele Song Template" which is a .zip file that is filled with JPEG images of all possible chord charts that you can print as-is, or paste into words documents, etc to make your own song sheets.

Errr... way to duplicate my post? :)

jer989
05-13-2010, 01:27 AM
Errr... way to duplicate my post? :)

oops, sorry about that, I must have scanned past it when I originally read through the thread! I honestly never saw it before any of my posts on this thread - my mistake....

whetu
05-13-2010, 11:06 AM
oops, sorry about that, I must have scanned past it when I originally read through the thread! I honestly never saw it before any of my posts on this thread - my mistake....

Heh, no problem... let's put it down to "great minds think alike" :D