Your first lesson with a new student will be the most important lesson you ever have with that student. If the student, or the parents, are not impressed, they won’t continue lessons with you. It’s not just important for your income as a teacher, it’s important for the student.
There have been many students that had a bad first impression with music lessons that didn’t continue. That’s sad! As teachers, our biggest desire is to share our passion of music with others. If we scare them off during the first lesson, it doesn’t matter how amazing of a teacher you are, they will never get a chance to find out! Here are some ideas that will make your new students beg to continue studying with you.
If you play the piano, or if you’re a teacher, you’ve likely been taught in the classical tradition. You predominantly learned to read music. By reading music, you translate the notes on the page into music on the piano. That’s the only way that I was taught to play the piano. I was never taught to improvise or play by ear. It’s a different skill set. Most often these skills are not found in classical pianists. Does that mean they can’t be applied in classical music?
Let’s look into a different way of learning, that can be extremely effective.
When I began teaching piano, I was adamant that the method books that were available were not as good as something I could teach on my own. After a few months, I realized I was wrong. Trying to create my own method was not complete enough, and I ended up all over the place with my students. I finally gave in and experimented with the big three: Bastien, Alfred, and Faber. It wasn’t until recently that I’ve finally found a method book I love. That books is Piano Safari.