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  • Writer's pictureJulia Pinckney Jones

Getting Ready for your First Lesson!

So you've signed up for music lessons and your first lesson is coming up... what now?

Make sure your instrument fits (PS - make sure you have an instrument, or a solid plan to get one!) With piano lessons, for example, this may mean a cushion or book on the piano bench and a footstool under the piano/keyboard to make sure that the student's feet can sit flat on the "floor" (or stool) and the keys are even with or lower than the student's elbows, when the student is sitting with good posture.

Set up your practice area:

- Regardless of the instrument (including voice), the practice area should be quiet and free from distractions and interruptions. If, for example, the practice area is in the same room as the TV, practice should take precedence over TV watching or video games.

- The practice area needs to have a place for all the student's books and materials, (tuners, metronome, etc) good light, and a music stand with at least one good pencil and eraser.

If you are transferring from another teacher, be prepared with the most recent books you've been working with. Even if the student has "finished" their books, the new teacher will want to look at them, and probably have the student play something from the old book. The student should prepare to play a favorite song from their last lessons.

If this is your first lesson with us, we will provide a binder for notes and assignments, and will recommend a book (or sheet music) for you to purchase after your first lesson. There's a music store nearby that should stock most method books, or your teacher will give you suggestions where to find any other material. If you are continuing after a break, bring your binder and music from last year.

All students should come to their lessons with a pencil (sharpened, with an eraser) and, since we live in the desert, a water bottle (sealable). Once you have books/music and your binder, you should always bring them with you to every lesson.

For any instrumental lessons, make sure the student's hands are clean and nails are clipped prior to your lesson.

Be on time for your first (and second, and third...) lesson. The teacher will have some initial "getting to know you" chat or paperwork, and you don't want to lose too much lesson time. However, the teacher will often have another student right before you so if you get there too early, you may have to wait quietly for your turn (or practice in another studio).

The student should be prepared to answer questions about themselves, their interests, and what kind of music they like. This will be easier if they prepare some things to say about those topics. Parents, while I know it is tempting to answer for your child, especially if the child is a little bit shy, it is important to allow the student to speak for themselves - the teacher needs to get to know the student, not the parent! ;)

Finally, arrive at your lesson with a good attitude, ready to make music!

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