5 Activities That Will Help You Become an Amazing Guitarist

It’s fairly easy to learn to play the guitar. In fact, it’s become much easier because of today’s technology. Just by looking up Youtube videos, you’ll be able to learn to play guitar as if you’re having a session with the pros. At Freaky Rivet, we've compiled some of the best guitar tutorial videos on [...]
It’s fairly easy to learn to play the guitar. In fact, it’s become much easier because of today’s technology. Just by looking up Youtube videos, you’ll be able to learn to play guitar as if you’re having a session with the pros. At Freaky Rivet, we've compiled some of the best guitar tutorial videos on the internet. Check them out if you want to be an amazing guitar player!
  1. Play Beginner Guitar Chords
    Activity-Play-Beginner-Guitar-Chords
    Before you get into the more complex stuff, you should learn to play beginner guitar chords first. By learning to play beginner guitar chords, you’ll be able to play any song. After all, all songs can be played with chords.
  2. Adventure Time Theme Song
    Activity-Guitar-Tutorial-Adventure-Time-Theme-Song
    Everyone loves Adventure Time! Also, its theme song is quite easy to play. Impress your fellow Adventure Time fans by learning this song on guitar!
  3. Play Sam Smith's "Stay with Me" on the Guitar
    Activity-Play-Sam-Smiths-Stay-with-Me-on-the-Guitar
    Sam Smith’s “Stay with Me” gives us the chills. Not only is Sam Smith’s voice amazing, the melody of the song is really nice, too. Play it in a stripped-down manner on your guitar!
  4. Play Ed Sheeran's "Thinking Out Loud" on the Guitar
    Activity-Play-Ed-Sheerans-Thinking-Out-Loud-on-the-Guitar
    Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud” was one of the biggest hits of 2014. It’s not hard to see why. It’s a really romantic song that resonates with a lot of people. The best part is that you can play it just like Ed Sheeran does! After all, his main instrument is the guitar.
  5. Play Lorde's "Royals" on the Guitar 
    Activity-Play-Lordes-Royals-on-the-Guitar
    Lorde is probably one of the coolest people on the planet right now. Despite being very young, she writes songs that are really mature. While the song Royals doesn’t have a guitar in it, you can play an acoustic version of it on guitar, and the best part is that it’s really beautiful in its own way.

Internet safety for kids

The internet is a massive resource for good for kids when compared to the resources we had when we were growing up. But it's not without its dangers. Our in depth article shows you what you should do to best keep your children safe online while still allowing them to get most benefit out of the online experience.
Used the right way, access to the internet can give kids many advantages. It can accelerate reading, help develop self-confidence, and act as an encyclopaedia (with the right guidance as to what sources to trust) for projects. Sugata Mitra, professor of educational technology at Newcastle University, and the winner of the $1m TED Prize 2013 recently asserted in The Guardian that information gained by children through the internet is retained longer than the information they gained through traditional rote learning. These advantages may lead to better academic outcomes. For instance, Research published in The American Psychological Association finds that home internet use by children has “positive effects”. As we are often reminded by the (often too sensationalist) press, the internet is also not without its dangers for children. It may expose them to cyberbullying, sexual predators and pornography. If not used carefully, it could even damage their reputation in interviews or college years ( WebMD has an interesting article on this and other related issues). We believe the internet should be a force for good for children. But aware of parental concern, we wrote an eBook to help parents navigate e-safety for their children. It is thorough and detailed (we’ve tried to give very specific advice), but we've extracted some excerpts here for you. We'd still recommend reading the whole book (it's short, easy to read, and has a children's section as well) which you can find on Amazon. Children Safe Online

Things you need to decide

There are things that are useful for you to decide in advance, and establish as principles. It means that when the issue arises, you are prepared, rather than having to fix the roof while it's leaking.
  • At what age should they have what access?
  • Where do you want the laptop? We'd recommend in a shared space in the house.
  • At what age should they have a smartphone? If it's security you're worried about, would a normal mobile phone do at the start?
  • Do you want to use software to do some level of protection and monitoring? We'd say yes, but see what makes sense for you.
Then these are some basic principles that your kids should understand as soon as they are able to.
  • Never post up your personal information.
  • Never meet up anyone you just met online.
  • Do not post inappropriate photos, or ones you wouldn’t want your teachers to see. Your photos can be up forever (even on Snapchat).
  • Never respond to unwanted messages. Show them to your parents to deal with.
  • Never share your password.
  • Don’t say anything online that you wouldn’t say to people in real life.
  • Do not download/install anything without checking with your parents.
  • Make the most of privacy settings.
  • If something online makes you feel uncomfortable, tell your parents/guardian about it.
  • Only share your phone number with family and close friends.
  • Lock your phone with a PIN and don’t share it with anyone but your parents.
  • Do not join contests, or respond to messages that claim you “won a prize” unless you ask your parents.

 

Help your children understand the internet so they can make their own decisions

The best way for children to stay safe on the internet is for them to understand the principles of online safety. Learning specific, individual tips is probably useful at the start, but in the long run, it’s more important that they understand the principles as they will undoubtedly encounter novel situations that may pose dangers, and you won’t always be there with them. As a parallel, think through how your child learned (hopefully) about road safety. When teaching kids about road safety, you probably started by walking with them and explaining what you’re doing and why. “If a car hits you, it can really hurt.” You then teach them context, “cars stop at a red light, the green man lights up, this is the time you should be crossing the street”. After teaching the context, you then focus on nuances. “Cross when the green man is lit, but still look both ways to make sure that they cars have stopped”, and explain the principles “you need to always look, and make sure you can anticipate whether crossing the road is safe where you are”. Eventually, you ask them to make road safety decisions while you’re with them, and give them tips and hints along the way. In short, you didn’t teach them how to deal with each and every situation they could encounter on the road. You gave them some examples, and taught them the principles as you went along. At the end of this, you’d hope they understand road safety principles well enough that they can travel on their own safely. The same principles of teaching can be applied to e-safety. Children can be given some specifics in a specific scenario. “Don’t put your real name and things about your friends on this site.” This then develops into a principle. “Anything you put up there will be there forever. Anyone can see it. You don’t want anyone online to know things about you that you don’t want everyone to know.” When they’ve understood this, they can start to make decisions under your guidance at key points. Eventually, they will just do it alone. It’s also important for children to understand the principles of e-safety because of the rapid changes in technology. If your kids don’t develop good decision skills, then they might easily get harmed as they come across new technologies, whether they’re new apps, sites, gadgets, or whatever else comes next. So what’s the best way to start this process?

Spend time having fun with your children online and helping them understand technology

Just like you first crossed the road with them, by spending time surfing the net with your kids, you can take them through the process of making the most of the internet, while looking out for the pitfalls. In addition, you get to learn more about the internet and other related technologies from their perspective, as well as how to deal with the potential harm they might cause your children. According to the International Communication Association, up to 40% of parents actually learned more about technology from their children, including computers, the mobile internet, and social networking. Your child also needs to think that your monitoring their internet usage is not because you don’t trust them, but because you want to learn from them and encourage them to make the most of the internet without being exposed to certain dangers. Your monitoring shouldn’t be draconian. You shouldn’t make them feel that internet use is bad and should be limited only when they really need it for school, etc. So for example, instead of blocking all access to social networking sites, let your kids join those that are kid-friendly (obviously Freaky Rivet would be the first to look at ☺) and explore them together. Also, encourage your children to explore the internet and ask them about what they learn. He Said Google

Key Principles your children should understand about staying safe online

  • Never post your personal information, such as a mobile phone number, home number, home address, or your location on any social networking site or through mobile apps like Snapchat or Instagram.
  • Never meet in person with anyone you first “met” on the internet. If someone asks to meet you, tell your parents or guardian right away. Some people may not be who they say they are.
  • Check with your parents before you post pictures of yourself or others online. Do not post inappropriate pictures of anyone.
  • Never respond to mean or rude texts, messages, and e-mails. Delete any unwanted messages. You may need to delete friends who continuously bother you or post things that are not appropriate.
  • NEVER share your password with anyone, including your best friend. The only people who should know your password are your parents or guardian.
  • If you wouldn’t say something to another person’s face, don’t text it or post it online.
  • Do not download or install software or anything on your computer or mobile phone before checking with your parents.
  • Use the privacy settings of social networking sites.
  • If anything makes you feel uncomfortable online, while gaming or when using your mobile phone, talk with your parents right away.
  • Mobile - Share phone numbers only with family and close friends. Do not put it on social network pages, use it to enter contests, or give it to just anyone who asks for it.
  • Mobile - Don't say, text, or post anything that would hurt or embarrass someone/ Don't make, send, or accept provocative texts, photos, or videos.
  • Avoid clicking links in ads, contests, text messages (even from friends) offering free prizes and the like.

Useful resources

How does Freaky Rivet help with online safety?

We at Freaky Rivet have the utmost commitment to online safety. For this reason, we have gone the extra mile to make sure that your children are completely safe on our website. We don’t get names and address, and our site doesn’t have a private messaging function. We examine all of the photos and videos uploaded on our site before we publish them. By requiring parents to use a credit card  for their membership, we are able to identify all of the adults on our site. We have zero tolerance for bullying, and we have alert buttons on the website that you can use to report bad behavior.

We Have a Dream

We have a dream. 40 locations. 40 communities of children supported. 40 sets of fun itineraries for family days out.

We have a dream. Getting children moving, creating and exploring is our mission and what the club is about. Aside from our members, we also want to help make that happen for underprivileged children around the world. And we want to do it in a fun way, which is also about moving, creating and exploring.

Which is where our itineraries come in. We are creating a bunch of fun themed itineraries for family days out in a number of different locations, and donating all the profit from the sale of these to charities which provide opportunities for underprivliged children in those locations to move, create and explore.

A friend of ours called these "Robin Hood Itineraries".

We like that.

Each itinerary, which averages 6 to 10 pages, takes a fun theme which kids will enjoy. For instance, in London we have 18 themes, including Animal London, Tudors London, Scientific London, Football London and London Spies. In Dublin, we are writing Viking Dublin, Irish Sports Dublin, Children's Literature Dubin and 5 more.

We then plot a route for the day which takes in stops relating to the theme, and adds a game in theme, suggested lunch stop, and a slew of random, but relevant facts. And all written in a very tongue-in-cheek style. There's also an online map if you want to access the itinerary from your smartphone on the move around the city.

Viking_Dublin

All in all, a fantastically fun and educational day out. With all sales profits going to a local children's charity. What could be better? Banoffee pie with a chocolate layer comes close, but not quite.

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Our first charity of choice, chosen with our wonderful parent blogging partner at Actually Mummy, the diary of a loquacious schoolgirl, is 'Cause You Can. Cause You Can works with children in deprived areas of South London to help them realise their potential by using the performing arts. Children will go through 12 weekly workshops, culminating in a public performance of music, or dance, or acting.

The workshops build children’s confidence, enhance their well-​​being and help develop their social and communication skills. The kids lead the creative process, so not only are they performing, but they own the entire process. They even give vocational training for youngsters who want to get into this area , having them work alongside the professionals who 'Cause You Can provide.

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It's wonderful work we fell in love with as soon as we saw it. But in the words of parents, children and teachers who've been through it...

“The parents were delighted to see their children perform, sing, dance and play instruments. Thank you and your staff for providing our children with the opportunity to work with such talented people.” Special Educational Needs Officer, St Andrew’s Primary School, Stockwell

“I have made friends! I don’t feel lonely anymore.” Catherine, 11

“When I’m singing, I feel confident! I feel like I can do more things like singing.” Melissa, 8

A key part of making this happen is our parent blogging partner. Not only do they choose the charity with us, but they take a key role in promoting the itineraries so that families can enjoy discovering the culture and history of the places we cover, and we can raise funds to support our chosen charities.

We were very lucky in London to work with Helen at Actually Mummy. Actually Mummy is an award-winning parenting website from Helen and her 9 year old daughter GG. In Helen's words, "together they share their stories and strategies for coping with the sometimes stressful, but never boring business of running a family". In our words, we love Helen's blog, not only because it is informative and witty, but also because it comes across very clearly how big a heart she has.

So we have a dream. We'd love to be supporting children in 40 different locations globally within 5 years. Help us get there, and have some fun along the way. Check out our itineraries starting with London. We're at DaysOutEverywhere.

The importance of a second opinion

The importance of seeking a second medical opinion. The inevitable future as our kids increase their dependence on Google.
It won't be long before our children graduate and this is what happens to our healthcare system! 20140619 Second Opinion