Private Music Lessons
Many students wonder about what it will be like when they take music lessons. I’ve written this to show you exactly how effective music lessons work best.
You will learn what an ideal private music lesson looks like, what will happen during the lesson, and what you’ll need to do at home. (Note that not all music schools and music teachers work this way, because music teachers are not licensed in the US.)
There are many elements to an excellent music lesson. But today I’ll show you the framework, the big picture. A great music lesson will be based on the cycle of learning.
The cycle of music learning
This is a 3 step process that is the basis for excellent music learning. It will ensure that you are making steady progress toward your goals. Knowing it will show you what to expect from a great lesson, from your teacher, and from the school you work with. It will also show you exactly what to do to progress quickly.
Step 1. The teacher provides information
When you come to a lesson, you will be asked to accomplish something. This goal is called the “aim”. You teacher should clearly define the aim so you understand it. It should be able to be accomplished in one lesson. If not, you should know how it will be accomplished over a longer period of time.
Your teacher should then give you only the information necessary to accomplish that aim. Anything less and you won’t be able to accomplish the aim. Anything more and you’ll be overwhelmed. A professional teacher knows how to get this right.
Step 2: You will achieve the aim
Your teacher will teach you this aim and demonstrate it. Your job it to accomplish it in the lesson. Your teacher will supervise you to ensure you are doing it correctly during the lesson. He’ll provide feedback and help when needed.
Step 3: You will form habits through practice at home
After you have accomplished the aim in the lesson, you’ll practice it at home to form a secure habit. This habit is formed through accurate practice.
When you come to your next lesson, your teacher will check the habit. If it is well formed you’ll get the next set of information and aims.
These are the three steps of the cycle of learning. If this process is followed, you’ll be guaranteed excellent progress!
Your teacher’s responsibility
Your music teacher’s job is to project a positive and supportive attitude, and to evaluate your work. She should provide you with the right information and clearly defined aims.
Your responsibility as a student
Your role is to trust the music teacher and their advice. You should take good notes, writing down the information and aims so you don’t forget them. Then you should apply it as directed. Lastly, you’ll practice at home to form secure habits.
Parents should be involved if the student is a child. But the parent’s role varies with the age and ability each student. A parent’s primary responsibility is to ensure that the student practices. The parent, however, doesn’t need to be directly involved in the practice.
If the teacher has formulated the aims well for the student, the student should be able to accomplish them without direct supervision. Although, the child might need some encouragement to practice.
Learning an instrument takes time and effort. Your progress will show over weeks, months, and years of practice. Be patient, the results will be great! By following this simple process, I guarantee that you can make excellent progress no matter your age, background or ability.
Trust in the process, and I know you will reach your goals!