You are apparently interested in playing the guitar. Or maybe you are educating yourself before you make a time and money commitment for a child. I believe that being able to play a musical instrument can be very satisfying and enriching, provided the choice of instrument is appropriate and provided that it is voluntary. I will focus this article on the choice of instrument.
The guitar certainly has been, and probably always will be, one of the most popular instruments. Why? I imagine it is because a classic guitar can be taken just about anywhere. You can always play a few strings and soon have a circle of people join you in singing. Even young people join in, especially when some of the classic rock songs are being played.
Ask yourself, or your child, the question what you/they ultimately want to achieve. Will guitar palying be for your own personal satisfaction, where you can play for yourself for hours, and don't really care what it sounds like to other? Or do you want to be able to play for others, join a a band? Will you be fully committed to practicing?
Your choice of guitar and how you plan to learn to play guitar will depend on your ultimate goal. Getting started with playing the guitar can be expensive, and it does not have to be. If you are unsure, check in the classified ads about buying a used guitar. You can always upgrade later. Call a guitar teacher or talk to the folks at the local music store in your area and ask them a few questions.
Electric guitars require a higher upfront investment, becasue they need an amplifier. It also might require some soundproofing for the room you plan to play in, unless you live in a very remote location. Neighbors generally do not appreciate a group of teenagers jamming at full volume at 10 pm or on a Sunday afternoon. And it is amazing what sound effects can be created with guitar and amplifier. It opens up a whole new avenue of creativity.
Learning how to play the guitar requires a good teacher or good learning program (book, video, audio) and commitment on your part to hours of practice. You can find a good teacher in your local area and you can find good programs on the internet. Many of these programs offer a combination of books and videos. Some include free newsletters or free sample lessons. Check the different avenues out so you can determine what works best for you. It might be a combination of learning with a teacher in person, supplemented by a downloadable program.
So before you run out, buy a guitar and sign up for lessons, ask yourself if you will dedicate several hours each week to practicing and playing the guitar. If you do, you will be able to enjoy many hours of enjoyment playing this wonderful instrument.