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The back-to-school season is coming to a close, but parents are still looking for extracurricular activities to fill their children’s free time. Music lessons are among the most common activities for kids, but can leave your wallet feeling a bit light. There are, however, inexpensive alternatives that are just as effective at teaching children a new musical skill. The Internet is a great resource for teaching children about music, and sites like JamPlay.com offer guitar lessons in a way that’s convenient, affordable and can be explored on individual terms.

“We offer the most comprehensive, complete set of guitar lessons in the world,” said Kevin Wimer, a JamPlay spokesman. “They are ideal for children who are just getting started, to musicians who have a true mastery of the guitar and are looking for instruction on a particular style or technique.”

Beginner lessons focus on posture, tuning, holding the pick, strumming, playing first chords and scales, music theory and more. The structured system makes learning easy for children and adults.

“Online learning is a great cumulative environment for students,” Wimer said. “One of the greatest advantages is they can learn from multiple styles of teaching. If they don’t understand a concept from one teacher, they can check out a similar lesson from another teacher that might make a lot more sense. There’s also no limit on how many times a student can watch a lesson if they want to hear something again.”

With JamPlay, students can learn from more than 3,000 lessons taught by instructors that include professors from major colleges, and professional rockers from acts like Atreyu, Steve Vai, Billy Idol and Korn.

The technology exposes students to a wide array of creative styles they might not get from a traditional classroom setting. Students can start with fundamental skill and then work their way into lessons that focus on their favorite genres and techniques. You’ll soon hear your child learning to play hundreds of popular songs.

Online learning also provides scheduling flexibility that traditional music lessons don’t offer. Not only can your child view lessons at any time, day or night, but they may also learn on the go with mobile devices including iPad, iPhone, iPod, Android and BlackBerry.

“Many parents appreciate the simplicity of just sending their child into another room to take a lesson instead of
driving them across town,” Wimer said. “For those who do prefer taking face-to-face lessons, and have the spare funds, there are a lot of great music teachers out there. Using JamPlay can be a great supplement in addition to in-person learning.”

There is little risk to trying the service; JamPlay offers a money back guarantee. Customers who decide the site is not for them will receive a full refund with no questions asked.

In addition to video lessons, JamPlay offers an extensive library of chords, scales and tracks for students to access. The site also offers interactive games to help with fretboard memorization, music notation, note identification and pitch recognition.

Earnest Parenting: help for parents who want their children to learn some music.