Learning to play the piano offers many undeniable benefits. And if you want your child’s learning experience to be exciting as well as effective, you have to look for a good piano teacher. After all, different instructors have different communication styles, learning techniques and genre preferences, all highly personal to 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 achieve by taking lessons? What teacher qualifications and experience will be useful in accomplishing these goals? What additional qualifications might help you further? What is your budget? How much scheduling flexibility do you need?
2. Ask for recommendations.
You can learn a lot from parents of children who are already taking piano lessons. Talk to your friends or relatives or coworkers – anyone who may want to share their experience. Besides that, local music stores and schools can also be willing to give you their 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 your homework.
Once you’ve found a good prospect, spend time seeing him at work. Attend his students’ recital and focus on how he interacts with them. A piano teacher should provide encouragement to learners. Pay attention to the teacher’s interactions with the parents too. If you can’t go to a recital, at least talk to a few of the instructor’s students or their parents.
4. Interview your prospects.
A personal interview with a prospective teacher is necessary, if only to see whether he is a good fit for your child. At your meeting, inquire about his teaching philosophy, qualifications, teaching style and expectations from students. Very importantly, bring your child with you to this meeting so you can see how they might 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.
Finally, don’t think you under obligation to hire a teacher just because you’ve interviewed him. In fact, you should interview two or three prospects and compare them before making a choice. 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 be professional enough to understand.