Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Questions For You


I've decided to start teaching piano lessons. It just makes sense. I play the piano. I love the piano. I have a degree in teaching. I want to stay at home. I want to make some extra money. I know lots of people that want to take piano, but don't know anyone who teaches it. Well, now they do.

I've been researching and preparing for a couple days, but I have some questions for you, my friends and blog friends who either play yourselves or have children who play.

1. What do you like about your/your child's teacher?

2. What do you think is a fair price for a lesson?

3. Do you have a favorite curriculum?

4. Do you have any advice?

10 comments:

  1. Yes, I have advice....
    I'll email you! :)

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  2. Wow, that's so exciting Sally. You'll be GREAT!! My girls use the Alfred's basic piano library series. We like them a lot, but we haven't tried anything else, so don't have anything to compare with. Their lessons are $12/half hour, which I think is extremely reasonable and probably too low. They love their teacher (and so do I) because she is friendly, encouraging, and flexible.

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  3. Very cool--I might get long winded, so I'll send you an email...

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  4. My girls' teacher gives them their choice of candy when they pass off a certain number of songs. It totally motivates them to pass off their songs!

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  5. I taught piano lessons to a couple of neighbor girls when I lived in New Mexico. I only charged 5$, but that was because I was friends with their mom, and I guess you should charge according to skill level. I am a 5$ teacher. You are probably a 15$ or 20$ teahcer! I gave them their choice from a bunch of stickers when they passed off their songs. I remember really enjoying having piano recitals with a theme when I took lessons, like Disney, or duets or things like that.

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  6. I have no advice for you. However I think you would be a wonderful piano teacher.

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  7. I took piano lessons for at least 5 years and dropped out. My mother always told me I would regret it and I do. My advice is to not eat candy in front of your students unless you plan to give them some. I always hated that teacher-she never shared!
    Now for some real advice:
    Let the student pick at least one song that they want to learn for fun(i.e. the little mermaid's "part of your world" would be one I would've liked to learn)

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  8. I wish you lived in Eugene!!!

    My kids have been taking lessons for quite awhile. I think Lowden started with he was 5 1/2. He could read at that point so he was ready.

    1. What do you like about your/your child's teacher?
    Lowden is on his third teacher. One moved, one is our new music teacher at school and can't teach lessons anymore, and one they just started with this fall. I like teachers that are excited about teaching piano. Enthusiasm is contagious. I also liked when they expect them to practice. The 2nd teacher said they needed to practice for 15 minutes 5 times a week. If they did this for 8 or 10 weeks, they got a gift certificate at Baskin Robbins for a kids cone. It was really motivating for all of them. There is no incentive with the new teacher but the kids are in the habit now so it isn't an issue. My friend does a monthly music theory class with all her students... I think she teaches about composers, plays music games, etc. The teachers often have a Christmas party for just the kids where they play christmas songs. Then a recital in the spring. Some take the summer off, some don't.

    2. What do you think is a fair price for a lesson?
    $12/half hour. We've been paying this forever.

    3. Do you have a favorite curriculum?
    We have always used the Nancy and Randall Faber series which our long-time teacher really liked. It comes with a lesson book, theory book, performance book, technique book, and popular repertoire book. They also have extra books -Christmas, Jazz, Rock, in all the levels. They also have an assignment book by Faber. But you can just use a small notebook. My friend teaches lessons and uses a different series that she really likes (and she thinks is better than Faber). I could ask her what it is if you are interested.

    You are going to be great!!!

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  9. Anonymous12:20 AM

    I think you will do a super job. Good luck.
    Mom Forsgren

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  10. It does make tons of sense for you to teach and I think you will do a great job! My kiddos took for a year and a half and then their teacher had a baby, so we are actually on the quest for a new teacher as I blog:0) So, for advice.
    1. When we first started with this teacher Rylie and Sophia would show up together and take their half hour and then switch. The teacher decided that she did not want siblings to come together anymore...she thought it would make it more "special" if they didn't. I thought it was a huge pain in the hiney. I didn't see that it made them feel more special to go on their own day. In talking to other piano teachers, they let siblings come and listen and do homework or play with the teachers kids. Just for this reason I would not go back to our teacher.
    2. We paid 50.00/month which gave 4 half hour lessons a month. I'm not in the mood to figure the math per lesson, so hmmm...then the teacher we used upped her charge to 60.00 per month. I know my neighbor pays 70.00 per month and I have another friend who pays a teacher 350.00 per month for her two kids. He does 1 hour lessons per week per kid. I would start low if I were you. Parents will love you for it and you can raise charges later if you feel you want to.
    3. We have only used Bastien. There's the piano book, a technic book, and a theory book. Don't know about other programs at all.
    4. Advice: after earning so many points for passsing off songs the kids were able to choose a full size candy bar out of her stash. This was very motivating. I think my girls would have loved piano more if they would have been given the chance to pick their own music to work on( not for everything of course). Their teacher ghave them a choice of a recital song, but only from classical composers. my girls just didn;t get into it very much. They would have been much more excited to do something from High School Musical or something.
    So, that's all I have for ya. Why don't you move your behind here to Beaverton so you can teach my bambino's?

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