What Every Music Teacher Wants You to Know Before Starting Lessons
Music on The Move Studios is known for a few things: An all-female showcase at City Winery, a podcast called Paradox Jukebox, a soon-to-be TV show, and a music education studio. My business partner Caitie Thompson and I have been teaching private lessons for a combined 15 years of experience between us. We have seen every kind of student you could imagine, so I thought it was only appropriate to write this with Caitie, and to also give advice to anyone looking to start lessons.
So, here are a few things that we, as music educators, want you to know before you begin lessons with us!
We LOVE what we do.
Most private teachers do so because they absolutely adore sharing their passions with students who also share those passions. It’s one of the most rewarding experiences to watch a student — of any age and any level — grow and get more and more excited about their own musical abilities! Sure, learning a new skill (or honing one you naturally have) isn’t without it’s bumps and bruises, but when students overcome said bumps and bruises and break past them, it’s an amazing experience — not just for the student, but for the teacher as well!
Every teacher has a different style — because every teacher learned a different way to do the same thing.
One of the most common comments I hear from new students is “my old teacher…”, thinking that I was correcting something they were doing because it was “wrong.” Sometimes, that is the case. Most times, it’s just a different way to approach the same idea. Especially in singing, there are so many different ways to learn and teach proper technique. It’s not that you learned it incorrectly; it’s that the way I teach you is the way I learned, and therefore, what I will impart upon my students. Sure, most teachers can adapt and change their approach according to each student (as they should!), but most teachers have a style that works for them.
Mistakes are how you learn — and should be celebrated!
If a student walked into a lesson knowing everything there is to know about their respective instrument, why would they need lessons? Mistakes are how we know what to teach you, and how you know what you need to learn! They’re also simply a fact of life.
One of my favorite things to teach my students is how to acknowledge that mistakes happen. Most students tend to stop the performance altogether and sink in on themselves, and it affects the rest of the performance. However, when you learn how to break down the mistake and analyze it, then you can learn how to avoid similar mistakes in the same song or other songs. Becoming aware of how mistakes happen and how to fix them is what will level your skills up from an amateur to a professional!
Private lessons don’t have to be scary or high pressure situations. Find the teacher that best fits you and your learning style!
And hey, if you liked this article, give Music on The Move Studios a try! We’re always excited to meet new students and learn new ways to share our passion for music!