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There is now two ways about this but to me your rhythm hand (strumming hand) is sooooooo important! If you have the right kind of strumming pattern and you are able to change it up you can take just 3 chords and make a dozen songs out of them.
Now if you’re like me I learned by ear – listening to my favorite players and mimicking their strum patterns. Though I’m able to read music I have to admit it’s a bit “black and white” if yo get my drift.
As I find myself teaching younger kids in a non-musical workshop environment I use tools to make it easier for them to use “theater of the mind” techniques. I would never play down the importance of learning how to read but if you have ever taught a group of kids ukulele you know the have an attention span of a “SQUIRREL” 🙂
So using this imagery not only makes it fun to learn different types of rhythms but it makes for fun song writing skills too.