Tuesday, November 20, 2012

How to Get More for Less!

Folks sometimes phone or email and ask "How much are your lessons?" I tell them that it depends on the student and how much effort they put into the activity.

After all, I may be called "a teacher" and they might be "a student" taking "lessons" but the situation is VERY different than school!

I see each person for a half-hour each week.

Much more time is spent at practice and thus the student has the majority of control of how much the lessons cost.

Allow me to explain further.

I assume that anyone who takes lessons is seeking to improve their skill. I can guide them competently but what I can NOT do is ensure the actual learning.

Most learning happens outside of my view, away from my control.

I don't see each student several hours per day, five days per week.

I do not give grades nor offer a degree. Instead, real ability at a skill is what is wanted.

The faster the student moves in that direction the shorter the lesson time needed - and the cheaper the lessons.

I have several ways to ensure that the student makes progress in the direction they wish, not the least of which is finding out from each student exactly what is needed and wanted. Not all instructors do this.

The idea that all keyboard teaching is the same except for cost and/or convenience is quite wrong headed. I wish the public wouldn't think this way, but too many do.

You can see that music is a broad field. There is a lot to it.

Thus, I begin with a free interview in order to discover exactly what is wanted.

This is true even if it is a parent paying for a child. That parent has goals for their kids and I always ask what these goals are.

The idea is very simple - if your lessons only focus on what you like and what you have to learn to be able to play the way you want to - well then those lessons will be quicker and thus cheaper because they don't waste your time and money.

Additionally, if the lessons are focusing on what you actually want to learn, then you are likely to work much harder. This shortens the time spent taking lessons.

If you want some help from me, the place to start is my website. I've tried hard to make it educational: www.danstarr.com