Many times a parent will ask us, how young is too young for music lessons? We normally will tell them to think about their individual child and their personality and ability. Once the parent has decided that their young child is ready to step into the music world here are a few things to think about when choosing a teacher for their lessons.
Your new lesson teacher should know the difficulties of teaching younger beginners.
*students have a shorter attention span
* students tend to be wiggly
*the students can’t read on their own
* they have not fully developed coordination
So how do we do we teach these students?
An effective young beginner music teacher should be able to make each lesson smooth and prevent some of the difficulties of teaching a young beginner. When talking to your childs new music teacher ask the teacher about how they will run the lesson with your small child. They should say or explain some of these points.
Make lessons have short different parts.
An effective teacher should not spend the entire lesson on one technique. Each music lesson should have different sections that run for about 5 minutes. Anymore time then the five minutes and the child will start to loose interest.
Let your child wiggle in a structured way.
The teacher will play songs that allow them to “shake their sillies out” during the lesson. These kind of songs will allow the child to wiggle and squirm as much as they want, and also be teaching them about rhythm and pitch.
Help students learn visually.
Find a book that provided the student with a lot of pictures to help them understand what they are learning. If your child can't read yet, there are different books that help teach the child with pictures and graphs.
Use music for little hands.
Make sure the songs you are teaching are for little hands. Even though your child and you have the same amount of fingers, their hands may not be able to move as fast as yours. The books your new teacher should be teaching from should have songs developed for little hands.
The best way to know if your child will be sucessful in their new music lesson is talking to your new teacher and making sure you, your child and the teacher are comfortable with the lessons. Good luck and welcome to the world of music!
How To Choose a Piano Teacher
If you go on Craigslist and search for piano teachers, you will find hundreds of teachers and music schools currently accepting students. Every ad will look basically the same but as we know, not all teachers are the same. How do you find the right piano teacher for your child or yourself??
What is the teacher’s background?
How long have they been teaching? Do they currently have students? You don’t want to be a guinea pig for a new teacher. You want to make sure they have taught students like you before. Ask for references! Any quality teacher will be happy you want to call one of their current students because they know their students will speak highly of them. A good teacher doesn’t need to come from a conservatory of music. But you do want to make sure they are trained on their instrument and know what they are talking about!
What style/method does the teacher use?
Many teachers can teach any style while others are strictly classical or jazz ect. Why do you want to take lessons? If you just want to learn some fun tunes and make a hobby out of it, you don’t want someone who is going to insist you work out of 3 different theory books and technique books and give you stringent practice guidelines. If you’d like your son to be the next Beethoven, then that’s a different story. If you want to learn Jazz, there are teachers out there who will do just that. For parents who want their kids to have a positive 1st experience, find someone fun and enthusiastic who will keep them motivated and inspired.
Where do lessons take place?
If you are signing up for lessons at a music studio, is it a friendly, clean, safe environment? Go check it out. Will you be happy walking in each week? Many studios and companies offer In-Home music lessons. Taking lessons in your own home is ideal for most kids. Mom doesn’t have to drive and kids are in their comfort zone. Again, if a lesson service or school is going to send an instructor into your home, make sure you talk to some of his/her current students and families. Make sure this is someone you want to open your doors for each week.
Does the teacher offer recitals?
Recitals should be part of any music program. It gives students goals a real reason to practice. Performing in front of your peers can be stressful and scary but the rewards far outweigh the stress leading up to the performance. No matter what level students are playing at, completing a recital will be a huge accomplishment and can be very inspirational as you see what others are capable of.