Monday, December 10, 2018

8 Picture Books to Inspire Advent Service and Traditions

Happy second week of Advent!

If you enjoy seasonal picture books as much as we do, please enjoy coming along on a look back of our first week of Works of Mercy Wise Men adventures from the first week of Advent.

As is our tradition here, we've been journeying along through Advent with our Works of Mercy Wisemen getting into picture books and reminding us each day of ways we might prepare our hearts and homes for Jesus, sometimes through choosing Corporal and Spiritual Works of Mercy to act upon and sometimes by living our own family traditions. 

{Disclosure: Some links which follow are affiliate ones.  Should you click through them to make any purchase, we may receive compensation at no extra cost to you.}

On the first day of Advent, our Wise Men sat atop our copy of  If He Had not Come.  They had some purple markers and papers with them there at our Happy New Liturgical year breakfast table. Thus, we decided that they were hinting that we might each reflect upon our own shortcomings, think of ways we might improve ourselves in the new liturgical year, and write a commitment down.  So, we did!

On the second day of Advent, our Wise Men were rifling through our box of Jesse Tree ornaments and looking at a page iKristoph and the First Christmas Tree

We decided that they were reminding us that, due to snafus the day before, we had never picked out a branch in the woods to set up as our Jesse Tree and, therefore, had not been hanging our ornaments and praying for those that made them for us.  So, after lessons and work, we made time to go find a branch just before dark.

On the third and fourth days of Advent, some crazy life happenings took over and an overnight at Grammy and Grampy's happened, so our Wise Men opted to get into our keys instead of a book, reminding us to pray for the living and the dead as we took care of commitments and quelled the rising chaos of life.

On the fifth day of Advent, it was St. Nicholas' feast day, and the children awoke to two new books and a CD set for our home library along with some small treats in their shoes.

Excited by the new books, our Wise Men decided to make up for missing the third and fourth days of Advent, and, so,split up to draw our attention to three different things.

One brought the star we always put above one of our nativity sets right up to our new copy of The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey, a favorite book we used to take out of the library every year and now happily own.

My children quickly decided that Wise Man was hinting that we should make time to unwrap each of our nativity sets and to put pieces of them up around the house as a way to prepare our home for Christmas.

Another Wise Man held a Jesse Tree ornament and was looking at a copy of Jesse Tree, another book we have taken out of the library for years and now own a copy of.  

We decided this Wise Man was reminding us that we needed to catch up on reading Scripture, putting up Jesse Tree ornaments, and praying for those who made them.  So, we did.

We also went through all the Advent Chain strips we've taken down so far this Advent and put hung the ones we have acted upon on our Jesse Tree while putting the couple that we have yet to accomplish on our table as a reminder.

The final Wise Man sat atop a pile of Saint Nicholas books, including The Legend of Saint Nicholas, a different The Legend of Saint Nicholas, and Saint Nicholas.

He was surrounded by oranges, cheese, bread, paper, and scissors, so my children immediately knew that we were to make paper snowflakes and a basket to secretly gift a neighbor as have every St. Nicholas day since the year we organized a St. Nicholas playdate where we introduced this tradition.

On the sixth day of Advent, I neglected to take a picture of our Wise Men vignette. However, since the Wise Men were standing atop a copy of The Christmas Coat: Memories of My Sioux Childhood and lugging an empty canvas shopping bag, my children decided this meant we were supposed to find clothing, shoes, or other items we no longer need to pass along to someone who could use them. 

 So, we set a timer for fifteen minutes and filled the bag as quickly as we could. Then, we immediately took a photo of what was inside the bag and posted it in several groups online to see if anyone wanted any or all of the things we'd collected.

On the seventh day of Advent, our Wise Men sat atop an image of the nativity from the beautiful The First Christmas book.  Because it was also our oldest's birthday, we knew the Wise Men were telling us to pray extra for him and to celebrate his birth.

And that brings us to today - the eighth day of Advent.

This morning the Wise Men sat among Giving Tree tags, gifts to give, and "Why We Give Gifts at Christmas" in A Child's Book of Christmas

The children knew it was the day we give gifts to our church's Giving Tree program for the children whose tags they'd picked off the tree the week before Advent.  They always enjoy doing this.

And, I always enjoy the pause we take (almost) daily during Advent to quiet ourselves for picture book read alouds, chatting, and deciding what Work of Mercy, virtue, or tradition we might act upon.

Our Works of Mercy Wise Men has become a beloved anchor of Advent for us as we revisit favorite picture books, read new ones, and spend time together preparing hearts and homes for Jesus.

If you'd like to read about our other Works of Mercy Wise Men ideas, please click through the images below to find some of our some past ideas.

May your second week of Advent be filled with service and special moments as you prepare yourself to encounter Jesus - past, present, and future - and rejoice that the Lord is near!

Friday, December 7, 2018

A Beautiful Devotional for My Daughter and Me {A Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women Review}

If you've got a young woman of faith in your life, the Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women by Zondervan could make a lovely gift.  

It is a small, hardcover devotional targeted to young women aged 13-18 that can be enjoyed by older and younger women, too.  

The devotional begins with a single-page introduction that explains that the Bible has "a lot to say about the unique challenges -- the heartaches and the high points -- of being female" and invites women to look at the stories of about 60 women in the Bible and to see how they are relevant to us today as beloved daughters of God.

Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women then gets right into 365 one-page devotions.

The devotions are numbered, not dated, which I appreciate, because that means the book is more inviting to pick up and begin at any point during a year. It also means that if you cannot spend time with the book every day, you won't be taunted by a day or week written at the top of page telling you to "catch up". Rather, you can just use the handy attached bookmark ribbon to open up to where you left off and carry on.

Each devotion is laid out in the same eye-pleasing way with a cheerful border of flowers, the number of the devotion, a verse at the top of the page in a reddish font, then several paragraphs in black that bring the tales of tragedy and triumph of ancient women of the Bible into nowadays relevance, and finally a few blank lines in case you want to make notes.

The devotions are also laid out in a logical way, beginning with women from Genesis and ending with those from the Old Testament and ending with those from the New Testament with consecutive days of devotions exploring lessons that can be gleaned from one woman from the Bible before moving on to the next woman that the Bible introduces.

Of course, all the more famous women of the Bible, such as Eve, Ruth, Elizabeth, and Mary are included.

Wonderfully, some lesser known role models are as well.

Each of he 365 devotions in Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women is brief, pointed, and inspiring, written in a language that appeals to many young women (with words such as "cool" and "just sayin'" included at times).

The organization, approach, and language of the devotional make
 "meaty" matters digestible, relevant and accessible.

A Gift for Daughter-and-Me

When I received Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women, my intention was to see if it would be appropriate as a gift for my 11-year-old daughter.  Thus, I have not read every page of the devotional yet, because I can only enjoy reading it when my daughter is not around - which is a rarity.  However, I have found pockets of time to read a week's worth of devotions here, another week there, a page here, and a page there, and, so far, I have found the material thought-provoking, encouraging, and edifying.

Mind you, I am well beyond the age that Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women is intended for, so the fact that some of the devotions speak to me personally points toward the fact that, although the book is written for Young Women, the stories of Biblical women are timeless and can be illuminating to all women.  Even when the take on them is geared to be relevant to younger women, we aging ones can benefit, too.  
With this in mind - as well as the fact that the print in the book is relatively small and might frustrate my daughter who struggles with dyslexia,  I have decided to gift 
Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women to my daughter as a mom-and-me devotional. 

My plan is to gift the book to my daughter with some tea bags, a container of cider, and a note saying I'd like to make regular mom-and-me time to read and chat about the book together. 

Why tea and cider? Simple. I favor tea, she favors hot cider, and we both like to spend time outside. This winter, I look forward to making some quiet time for just y daughter and I to read and chat about the devotions outside away from the hullabaloo of family life at home with just her brothers.

I am especially excited about this, because my daughter has been making strides with reading her large-print Bible and other material, and, I think that, with me alongside her, 
Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women might unlock the gift of reading for my daughter even more. For, I know she will love the stories and verses in it and will be moved by many of the thoughts in the devotions. 

Familiarity with the language of the Bible and desire to see what Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women has to say might motivate my daughter to make strides in reading while also encouraging her to keep blossoming as the beautiful daughter of God she is.

If I am wrong about the reading part, however, and the relatively small print and level of reading in the devotionals proves just a little too much for my daughter, I am still confident that 
Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women can be a win for us. I can read the devotions to her and, then, we can chat about them. Whether she reads them or I do, the beauty of their meaning will still be there. 

I truly look forward to seeing how our time with 
Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women will unfold and bless us.

Read all the reviews.

Learn More

From what I've read of Beloved: 365 Devotions for Young Women so far, I recommend the book for young and older women alike.

If you'd like to see what people who are currently using the devotional with their daughters or have daughters using it on their own, be sure to click through reviews from
60 Review Crew families.  Some are written by people who are not saving the book as a gift, like I am, but who are already using it!

Find Zondervan on social media:

Crew Disclaimer

Sunday, December 2, 2018

Get Your Free Prayer for the Child in the Womb Copywork and Consider Offering Spare Change to Spare a Life

Happy New Liturgical Year!  We pray your Advent has opened with plenty of time for prayer, preparation, and joyful anticipation of the commemoration of when Christ was born, of His coming to us daily through grace and through the Eucharist, and of when Christ comes again.

This morning, as we began celebrating Advent, a baby bottle again took a place on our table as a daily reminder to pray and give alms to the unborn and their families.

For years now, my children have eagerly picked up a baby bottle from a bassinet in the back of our church to take home and fill from Advent through Epiphany.

Doing so, has become a meaningful Advent tradition in our home that we initially enjoyed in conjunction with our family's Count, Pray, and Give initiative, and, now, participate in more simply - just dropping spare change into the bottle through Advent and Christmastide and having the bottle sit on our table as a continual reminder to pray.

This year, I have also made a Prayer for the Child in the Womb copywork set, using the words of a prayer from the Irish Catholic Bishop's Conference.  I share it here in case your children would like to use it for your family or classroom.

Get it here.

The FREE Prayer for the Child in the Womb Copywork Set includes the prayer in print and cursive, as well as lined sheets to copy it on.

We are grateful to the Respect Life Committee at our church for introducing us to the Spare Change-Spare a Life Baby Bottle Campaign and pray that by sharing about it here, you may be inspired to initiate a similar tradition in your home, co-op, church, or community.

May we each choose life 
in every decision we make! 

Sunday, November 25, 2018

How I Plan a Last Minute Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal and Saint Catherine Labouré Gathering

Whoops! Life got busy this month.

Here it is nearly November 26th. Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal's feast day is November 27th, and Saint Catherine Labouré's is November 28th. Yet, I am just getting some time to plan our local Catholic homeschool group's monthly feast day gathering. 

As I do, I thought I'd share my ideas with you in case, you, like me, are a last-minute mom.

Okay, here goes:

The three ingredients we like to focus on during feast day celebrations are faith, food, and fellowship.

Leaving Fellowship to the Holy Spirit

Matthew 18:20 has long since become my guide for fellowship when it comes to our group's feast day gatherings.

"...where two or three gather in my name, there I am with them."

History has proven to me that whether only two families can gather, or five, or ten, or more, God is with us. 

In fact, it always seems that when our numbers are small it is because the Spirit is guiding those of us in attendance to the fact that someone needs an extra ear or bit of encouragement, and, when numbers are large, fruit becomes apparent, too.

So, planning for fellowship was easy for our upcoming gathering. I simply asked which mom in our group would like to host, then, based on her schedule and mine, picked a date and time before sending an invitation to everyone else.

She hosts. I facilitate.  Two families gather in His name and the Spirit guides whoever else can come.  Perfect!

No Fussing about Food

The time and location of our event determines what we will do for food - a small snack, a picnic, a luncheon, a tea, a dinner potluck...

This time, we are meeting between 3:00 and 6:00 p.m., so we are going for a substantial tea potluck, and, since I could find no traditional Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal or Saint Catherine Labouré recipes, nor any suggestion of what the sisters in St. Catherine's convent ate, we decided to go with an "anything connected" approach.

We have asked everyone who is coming to bring a dish or drink to share which is somehow connected to our St. Catherine Labouré, Our Lady, or he Miraculous Medal.  That could mean:

  • French foods like croissants with butter and jam, baguettes with cheese, eclairs, French onion soup, etc.
  • dishes symbolic of Our Lady, which typically include blue and white items
  • dishes that remind us of the symbolism in the Miraculous Medal, such as pasta "serpents" with a Mary statue on them (depicting Mary crushing a serpent beneath her feet), golden drinks or foods for the Blessed other appearing as radiant as a sunrise "in all her perfect beauty", anything circular with "rays" shooing out of them to "...symbolize graces (Mary) shed upon those who ask for them", anything white to remind us of purity and "O Mary, conceived without sin, (who) pray(s) for us who have recourse to (her)," anything in a cross or M shape, small food shaped like 12 stars (for the 12 stars symbolizing apostles, heart-shaped foods (for the Sacred heart of Jesus who died for us, and the immaculate Heart of Mary who intercedes for us)

Obviously, with these suggestions, our feast table could end up with just about anything on it in the way of food. (It is always fun to see how our potlucks take shape.) 

Along with the food, we'll set out some candlespeg dolls, and, of course, Miraculous Medals.

This is one doll from a Marian peg doll swap we did.  She may grace our table.

{Some links which follow may be affiliate links.}

One or more of these books will also be out on our feast day table:

Source: Amazon

our old used copy of the now out-of-print Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal Coloring Book

Planning for Easy Faith-Connected Activities

As families arrive at our feast day celebrations, the parents usually begin to put together the feast day table while the children greet each other.  Some just like to chat; others like something to do with their hands. So we'll have out color sticks,watercolor pencils, paintbrushes and small cups of water along with a variety of coloring pages, such as:

These dolls from a Marian Apparition peg doll swap will likely decorate our feast table.

Then, after everyone has arrived and the feast day table has been prepared, we gather for a group chat and prayer time.  For Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal and Saint Catherine Labouré chat, I will open by showing my peg dolls and asking:

  • Who is St. Catherine Labouré?
  • What significant events happened to her?
  • What virtues did she model for us?
  • Does anyone know what the connection is between St. Catherine Labouré and the Blessed Mother?
  • Can anyone tell us a little about the Miraculous Medal?

Depending on what the children are able to tell me, I will either just add to their answers in order to fill in details about St. Catherine Labouré and the Miraculous Medal or I will read them a brief biography of St. Catherine Labouré from the Picture Book of Saints.  (I may use a powerpoint about St. Catherine from the Vincentian Marian Youth USA siteas a quick reference.)

Chat complete, I will lead the children in praying a prayer I found at Catechist:
God of All People, we pray to live your will in our lives like St. Catherine Laboure. Help us to love you and serve you as she did. May we be humble and not seek attention for ourselves—but always seek glory for you. We know that with you all things are possible. Amen.

After that, I may have the children act out a more detailed story of St. Catherine Labouré as told in a pdf from the Vincentian Marian Youth USA site.

I will also hand out Miraculous Medals to all of the children and have them inspect the medals as we note the symbolism on the front and back sides as found on the Divine Mercy site.

I'll give each child a length or ribbon, too, to make a makeshift necklace to hold their medals on, and, then, we may pray the Prayer to Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal as found on Pierced Hearts of Jesus and Mary.

O Virgin Mother of God, Mary Immaculate, We dedicate and consecrate ourselves to you under the title of Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal. May this Medal be for each one of us a sure sign of your affection for us and a constant reminder of our duties toward you. Ever while wearing it, may we be blessed by your loving protection and preserved in the grace of your Son. O Most Powerful Virgin, Mother of Our Savior, keep us close to you every moment of our lives. Obtain for us, your children, the grace of a happy death; so that in union with you,we may enjoy the bliss of Heaven forever. Amen.

We may also talk about how St. Catherine Labouré lived her life humbly, quietly, and in service to others and said, "One must see God in everyone." In doing so, I will share a quote from Saint Catherine:

Whenever I go to the chapel, I put myself in the presence of our good Lord, and I say to him, ‘Lord I am here. Tell me what you would have me to do.’  If he gives me some task, I am content and I thank him.  If he gives me nothing, I still thank him since I do not deserve to receive anything more than that.  And then, I tell God everything that is in my heart.  I tell him about my pains and joys, and then I listen…  If you listen, God will also speak to you, for with the good Lord, you have to both speak and listen.  God always speaks to you when you approach him plainly and simply.

Then, I will ask:

  • How do you pray?
  • Doyou speak?
  • Do you listen?
  • How might God direct you in service to others this Advent?
  • Do you think He is giving you a task to do?

Finally, before closing our prayer and formal activity portion of our gathering to make time for free play, I will lead the children in a brief litany of sorts:

Leader:   St. Catherine, servant of the sick and elderly poor...
All:         Pray for us...
Leader:   ...intercede for us that we may grow in the virtue of humility.  St. Catherine, visionary of the Miraculous Medal...
All:         Pray for us.
Leader:   May we model after you, growing in devotion to Mary. St. Catherine, model of prayer and service...
All:         Pray for us...  
Leader:   that, like you, we may approach God plainly and simply.  Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal...
All:         Pray for us.  
Leader:  O Mary, conceived without in, pray for us who have recourse to you.  Amen.
A Couple of Extras

On the way to our homeschool group gathering, my family will likely listen to a favorite Altar Gang CD which mentions the Miraculous Medal and Catherine Laboure.

We may also watch an EWTN Vimeo before departure!

I would love to hear your ideas for celebrating Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal and Saint Catherine of Laboure with faith, food, and fellowship!

Our Lady of the Miraculous Medal and Saint Catherine Laboure, pray for us!

Sunday, November 18, 2018

Get a FREE Printable Christ the King Novena Set!

 Get a FREE printable set!
Get a free printable set.

Okay.  I admit it.  I have never been good a praying novenas, and, therefore, my children are not either.  Yet, I know that praying novenas can be a beautiful way of imitating the Lord's command of the Apostles when hey prayed for nine days in anticipation of he coming o the Holy Spirit, can help connect us to the liturgical year, and can focus us on the powerful act of praying and trusting in God.

Thus, even though I have missed Days 1 and 2 of the Christ the King Novena, which leads up to movable feast day being celebrated in the Church next Sunday, I thought I would begin the Novena anyway - simply doubling up on prayers for two days.

As a prayer aid, I also thought I would take the time to make simple Christ the King Novena copywork set to offer my children this week.  I am sharing them here in case your children can benefit from them, too.

This FREE printable Christ the King Novena set contains on copy of the novena prayer in print, one in cursive, and blank lined sheets with images, too.

To pray the novena, recite one Our Father, one Hail Mary, one Glory Be and the Novena Prayer.
You might also enjoy our:
We so enjoyed celebrating Christ the King with books and symbolic eats.

Christ is King of Our Hearts, so my baby wore this crown at our simple family tea.

O Lord our God, You alone are the Most Holy King and Ruler of all nations. We pray to You, Lord, in the great expectation of receiving from You, O Divine King, mercy, peace, justice and all good things. Protect, O Lord our King, our families and the land of our birth. Guard us we pray Most Faithful One. Protect us from our enemies and from Your Just Judgment.Forgive us, O Sovereign King, our sins against you.Jesus, You are a King of Mercy.We have deserved Your Just Judgment Have mercy on us, Lord, and forgive us. We trust in Your Great Mercy. O most awe-inspiring King, we bow before You and pray; May Your Reign, Your Kingdom, be recognized on earth. Amen.

Thursday, November 15, 2018

Try Out Guitar 360 Method Using a Coupon Code!

{This post may contain affiliate links.}

Ooo!  You have to love when you find a course that both a dad and a daughter can enjoy.  That's what's happened here when we were offered a chance to review the Semester 1 Bundle from Guitar 360 Method - an excellent resource for online, immersive lessons which include music theory.

Deal Alert!

If you've already heard of Guitar 360 Method and have just stopped by looking for a coupon code,  you're in luck! Krisz Simonfalvi, the author and instructor of Guitar 360 Methodhas kindly offered a limited time only coupon code for Training Happy Hearts readers.  Just use the code HOMESCHOOL20 at checkout for 20% off!

What is Guitar 360 Method?

If this is your first time hearing about Guitar 360 Method, let me explain a bit about what it is and how it works.

Guitar 360 Method is a series of online video guitar lessons designed for students who want to gain confidence in their guitar skills, enjoy freedom in when they learn, and exercise creativity in their playing. 

The program aims to help you do more than JUST learn songs.  It teaches how music works, so you can succeed with your aims, whether they be strumming for fun, playing in a band, or writing your own music.  

Guitar 360 Method is best suited for tweens, teens, or adults, and can be excellent for you if you are an absolute beginner that wants to understand the guitar while learning practical music theory.  It can also be ideal for you if you've been playing for a while, but wish to learn more in order to unleash your creativity.  The author and instructor of the program also states that children as young as nine can do well with Guitar 360 Method if they have a strong personal desire and drive to succeed.

The Semester 1 Bundle comes with:

  • the Free 5-week Absolute Beginner Course that takes you through Parts of the Guitar, Left Hand and Right Hand Basics, How to Tune, 4-Finger Warm Up Exercises, Your First Chord, Next chord(s), Basic Strumming, Pickups and Multiplying Chords, Parts of a Song, Practice, etc.
  • Bonus Content Songs carefully instruct you with an Introduction and Verse, Pre-Chorus, Chorus, Bridge, and Practice
  • 13 Weeks of Semester One material takes you from being a beginner to confidently playing in any key anywhere on the neck with dynamics, musical interest, and variety.  Among other things, you'll learn about Chords, Strumming, Music Theory, Scales, and Adding Texture and Variety.  By the time you finish the material, you'll have learned enough to a play rhythm or lead guitar.

When learning with 
Guitar 360 Method, you'll find a Cyclical Pedagogy where every bit of knowledge acquired connects to everything else you are learning, allowing you to build confidence, freedom, and creativity instead of being stuck in the mire of a tedious linear-approach.  

In fact, the instructor and author of the program, 
Krisz Simonfalvi, has succeeded due to his mix of skill and down-to-earth music theory!  He started playing classical guitar at age six, quickly became good at it, but did not enjoy it, because his teacher never taught him how to understand the guitar.  So, Krisz quit playing after six years.

Then, in Krisz's teens, he picked up an electric guitar and found his music theory teacher's voice ringing in his ears. He realized how easy it is to understand the guitar with practical, down-to-earth music theory and went on to tour with bands, record in studios, produce music, and teach lessons to pros and newbie alike.

In his career, Krisz has:

  • taught over 200 private students - from beginners to professionals
  • instructed in guitar, bass, music theory, songwriting, stage performance, music production, arranging, and engineering
  • recorded 20+ projects for a wide range of international artists on four continents
  • and, of course, launched Guitar 360 Method.

That means Guitar 360 Method, though fairly new (launched in 2017), comes with a long history of success.

It also comes with ease of use.

We found log-in super simple, and, pulling up content easy.  There was no wasted time as we navigated the course through targeted, bite-sized lesson videos.

Lessons vary, but, typically, each one contains one or more of these types of videos:

  • Goal, where you find out what you'll be learning
  • Instruction, where the actual teaching takes place
  • Ear, where you practice listening to differences between chords to help you play by ear
  • Practice, where you follow instructions and see fingering and chords
  • Quiz, where you check up on what you've been learning by taking a multiple choice test with instant feedback

There are also some downloadable files to help you retain your learning.

The course is set up so you can take things at your own pace, reviewing prior material or even jumping ahead as you wish.

Guitar 360 Method truly is solidly designed and taught.

A Happy Girl

My 11 year old was the person in our home who most wanted to try 
Guitar 360 Method, since she her daddy bought her a guitar a while back that she has been wanting to learn to play.

She was excited to start 
Guitar 360 Method, and, thanks to Krisz's kind and clear demeanor, was not chagrined by the fact that her fingers are still a bit small and tender and her fingers lack practiced dexterity.  In fact, she is content going slowly with Guitar 360 Method and has this to say:

I have wanted to play guitar for a couple of years. 
On my ninth birthday, my dad got me a guitar and said he'd teach me. That did not go very well.  So, I was excited when I saw we could do the Guitar 360 Method.
I  have only used the beginner lessons, because I am very slow, and the teacher says, "Take it at your own pace."  So, I took him seriously. 
So far, it is going better than lessons with my dad. 
I like how the teacher is up front.  For example, when he teaches how to use the pick, he showed me how to use it a certain way and, then was like, "and right off the bat, my problem with this series... There are people who use the pick this way (the wrong way), and they are legends, but we're going to try it like this."  I like how he says that there is not one way to do things.  Other people are like, "This is the only way to do it, and you have to do it this way!" (Not my dad or Krisz, but many teachers.) 
I also like that the videos are short.  That makes it easier to find videos with a certain skill.  You don't have to go through a long video, but can see it in a short video that is labeled. 
I also like that the teacher seems fairly happy. He is easy to listen to. 
My mom told me Guitar 360 Method is not a subscription that runs out.  That's good, so I can actually finish it. I am slow and there is no pressure.  I like this and would recommend it to kids like me, who are kind of beginners, and people who have started playing but want a refresher and to learn new things.

A Pleased Dad

My husband, who has played guitar on and off for years and even played in a paid band for while, has also been viewing the course.  He says:
As an experienced guitar player, I wasn’t sure if I would get anything out of the Guitar 360 Method program. Much to my surprise, I actually learned some new things. 
For example, I had never heard of Solfege prior to starting the program. Another example is the shortcuts to finding notes. Although I have been playing for many years, I still struggle to find all of the notes on the guitar without having to think about it. This is a common issue with many guitar players. However, Krisz Simonfalvi gives several easy-to-remember tips on how to quickly find notes on the guitar. I found this section to be extremely helpful.
Not only did the program teach me new things, but it also helped re-establish ideas and techniques that I am already familiar with. He spends time going into music theory, teaching the student how to connect minor and major scales, analyzing chord shapes and even string bending. And he also has a check on learning by giving quizzes periodically throughout the program. 
Overall, I think that it’s a good program because it helps the beginner go from the basics of the guitar to music theory which will help students take their playing to the next level. Further, it helps the experienced player learn a few new things and reinforce prior knowledge in a unique and interesting way. I would definitely recommend it for a self-taught, non-classically trained experienced player like myself to learn more.

My husband is also a huge Youtube fan and has viewed countless Youtube videos to pick up different guitar skills through the years.  When I asked him what he thinks about Guitar 360 Method in comparison to most free Youtube videos, he said this program definitely gives a bigger picture and is more methodical.  On Youtube, you have some guy that just quick says, "Here, I am going to show you how to do this," and does just that. With Guitar 360 Method, you can definitely see the whole method.  The program can take a beginner from where they are to where they want to be and can be a resource for more experienced players, too.

No Need to Rush to Finish

One thing I dislike about many online programs is the rush to finish them before a subscription runs out, or, worse, the fact that life sometimes gets in the way of studies and, then, when you return to pick up where you left off, your subscription has ended and you cannot continue without paying again.  With 
Guitar 360 Method 
this will not happen!

Once you get 
Guitar 360 Method its yours to keep, and I love that! For, like many homeschoolers, my family struggles with actually getting the "home" in homeschool. Between work trips for my husband, homeschool community commitments, outside classes and service opportunities, my own work needs, and more, our family often finds that we're short on time at home to enjoy things like learning and playing music.  Add to that that one of our computers recently died, and, once we have attended to priorities of eating, sleeping, chores, and basic lessons, there just are not enough screens to go around for everyone to dive in concurrently with what they wish. For us, that means that subscription-based programs, even when liked, don't always get completed and often become more stress than enjoyment lately.

Guitar 360 Method is not a subscription, though, this has not happened. My daughter has been able to begin to self-pace through the program in small pockets of time while my husband has referenced it around work and family.  My boys - who both want to give it a go - know they can when time allows in another season, and I can, too! You see, I have always wanted to play an instrument, and after seeing parts of Guitar 360 Method in play for my daughter and husband, am confident that when I some of my current commitments and life concerns wind down, I can finally begin learning.

Yes, I just LOVE that 
Guitar 360 Method does not come as a subscription, but is our family's to keep!

Learn More

Remember, if you want a FREE taste of Krisz's teaching style and the high-quality of his lesson videos, you can use his Free Course for Beginners.  Then, if you like what you see (like we do!), move on to the Semester 1 Bundle using the coupon code HOMESCHOOL20 at checkout, which, for a limited time, will offer you 20% off.

If guitar isn't your thing, keep an eye out at 
Guitar 360 Method  for the release of upcoming Keys 350 (piano) Method and Drums 360 Method in the near future.

Find Guitar 360 Method on social media:

Find all the reviews!

Read how 50 Review Crew families have been learning how to play guitar online using Guitar 360 Method with tweens, teens, adults, and even younger children.

Crew Disclaimer


Related Posts with Thumbnails