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Parent Tip: Choosing a Piano Teacher

Learning to play the piano offers many undeniable benefits. And if you want your child to have a learning experience that is both fun and exciting, you need to find a good teacher. Besides, instructors can have different techniques, communication styles and preferred genres – all very personal to the them. So how do you know which piano teacher is best for your child?

1. Define your expectations.

Prior to searching for a piano instructor, first define what it is exactly that you want in one. What do you and your child hope to attain by taking lessons? What qualifications and level of teaching experience will help you reach these goals? Will there be any additional qualifications that could help you further? How much are you comfortable spending for the lessons? How much flexibility do you need in terms of scheduling?

2. Ask for personal recommendations.

You can learn a lot from parents of children who are already taking piano lessons. Talk to friends, relatives, colleagues – anyone who may have an experience to share. On top of that, you can also approach local music stores and schools, which can usually provide expert recommendations. Just remember that while word-of-mouth can provide some quality prospects, kids learn in varied ways, so what works for one child may not necessarily work for another.

3. Do a bit of homework.

Once you’ve found a good prospect, spend time seeing him at work. Attending a recital of his students is a good idea because then, you see how he interacts with them. A piano teacher should provide encouragement to learners. Also pay attention to how the teacher deals with the parents. If its not possible for you to go to a recital, at least speak to some of the instructor’s students or their parents.

4. Interview prospective teachers.

It’s important to personally interview a prospective teacher to help you decide if he is the right one for your child. During this meeting, ask him about his overall teaching philosophy, qualifications, teaching methods and expectations. Your child’s presence during this meeting is crucial as this will be your chance to see if they get along. If there is no positive connection, learning can be extremely difficult. Worse, your child may even lose his drive to learn music.

5. Compare potential teachers.

Lastly, don’t think you’re obliged to commit to a teacher simply because you’ve interviewed him. In fact, it’s wise to interview at least two or three prospects, compare them and then pick the one you feel is best for your child. Even if your child has started taken lessons from someone, you can still decide to switch to another teacher, provided you do it with proper notice. A professional instructor will understand your desire to give your child what you think is best for him.

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