Getting Started, Ages 3-7

Finding the "right fit" is equally important for student and teacher. The following pages will help you understand my expectations and aid your decision in moving forward with my studio.

Expectations vary based on age. If your child is ages 3-7, read on. If your child is age 8+, read about expectations here.

Observation

New families observe several lessons before requesting a lesson time. This allows you to observe my teaching style and gives your child a student role model in the studio. Becoming comfortable in the environment is an important part of being able to focus on learning.

When observing, please arrive about 10 minutes early just as you would to your own lesson. Get into the routine of removing your shoes, entering quietly and being ready, physically and mentally, to start. Prepare your child before the lesson about being respectful, quiet listeners. Observation is "passive" for students, so don't worry if they are looking around rather than focusing on the lesson. Children are always absorbing a lot more information than we think! Quietly looking through a book or coloring are OK. Please keep electronic devices put away while in the studio.

As observers, you do not need to stay for the entire lesson. When children become wiggly or disruptive behavior occurs, slip out quietly. Sometimes children need specific reminders of what respectful, quiet listening means. This is to be expected and should not upset or deter you from trying again. You may, however, decide they have reached their attention limit - that's OK! It is important to leave pleasantly, otherwise negative feelings will be associated with piano lessons.

On the way home, engage your child in conversation about the lesson. Avoid questions that can negatively affect their desire to return, such as, "Did you like it? Do you want to start piano?" A child cannot accurately gauge their feelings at this point, especially when they did not get to participate. Instead consider, "Can you hum one of the pieces you heard today? What did you think the student did really well in their lesson today?"

An age 3 student should observe a minimum of 8 lessons; age 4-5 should observe 6 lessons; ages 5+ should observe 4 lessons. Observation should continue until a lesson time becomes available. Once lessons begin, students are still expected to observe the student before or after them.