Have you decided that it’s finally time to share your passion for the piano with the next generation of musicians? Hopefully you’ve thought about the kind of piano teacher you want to be. Every piano teacher has his or her own style, some feel there are a few characteristics that all awesome piano teachers have in common:
1. They care about their students, and their students know it. Great piano teachers find ways to make a connection with every student. They might do it by taking an interest in their students’ lives outside of piano. They might do it by showing respect for their students’ ideas and aspirations. In all cases, they know how important trust is in the teacher-student relationship.
2. They’re sensitive to the individual goals of their students. Some piano teachers are focused on helping their students pass exams, or win competitions. Some take a more relaxed approach and avoid putting students in stressful situations. Great piano teachers, however, find out what their student’s goals are and do everything they can to support them. They’re great at explaining options, and they’re always ready to change direction as their students grow and change.
3. They’re flexible. Great piano teachers go into each lesson with a plan, but are always ready to adapt as needed. Their bag of tricks includes a variety of games and activities to help relieve boredom. They let themselves be guided by students’ curiosity and interest. Maybe they don’t love every single song their students pick, but that’s okay – they’ll do everything they can to help students learn the music they love (while also, perhaps, exposing them to some less familiar music as well).
4. They give praise as well as correction. Great piano teachers know that their job isn’t just to fix mistakes, but to tell students what they’re doing well. They understand how to build confidence by making sure students appreciate their successes, as well as the next steps for further improvement.
5. They encourage experimentation and exploration. Great piano teachers are familiar with stylistic conventions, but not irrevocably bound to them. They’re less interested in making students play the one, correct interpretation of a piece, and more interested in making sure the student is conscious of the choices they’re making. They not only encourage, but demonstrate curiosity and thoughtfulness over dogma.
And 5 more reasons in next blog.
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