Selecting a piano teacher requires knowing your options. The following are a set of questions to ask a potential instructor before hiring.
- What experience does the instructor possess?
A lot of music students are good instructors and they offer lessons for a reasonable fee. They are great to learn the basics of the piano and they also have the freshness of being students themselves to offer. When hiring a professional instructor, it is important to ask him about his students, the weaknesses they possess and how he goes about rectifying those weaknesses. Also asking him to play a piece for you is a good way of finding out first- hand if he is skillful.
- Does the instructor host recitals?
Having the option of playing at a recital is great for all piano- players. Thus, make sure you ask the potential music instructor whether he hosts recitals and whether he would be able to give you the opportunity of playing in front of an audience. Understand what goals you have in learning to play music and whether you ever want the spotlight to be on you.
- Where will lessons be held?
Ask the potential piano instructor where he holds lessons: if it is in his house or studio or if he is fine with making house calls. The former option is great for people who don’t mind travelling to learn music and it is wonderful that one will have the opportunity of playing on a different piano. The latter option is suitable for those people who want to enjoy learning the piano in the comfort of their homes. A lot of music stores conduct in- house piano lessons for interested people.
- What is the length of each lesson going to be?
Usually the standard time for piano lessons is between 30 minutes to about an hour. If you are someone who wants longer lessons, ask the instructor whether he will oblige you. Check to see what suits both you and your potential piano teacher. Also make sure that you ask about whether any extra fee is applicable in case a lesson goes beyond the appointed time.
- What are the extra charges, if any?
Ask the potential piano instructor about what his fees include, as pupils may be charged extra for all music supplies or to be put into a recital. This is important, as you don’t want to be in for a surprise cash-wise.
- How to find the perfect piano teacher?
Now that you know what is required of a piano instructor, you need to find him or her. There are many sources for finding one, some of which are mentioned below:
- Phone book
- Music store (in-house lessons and newsletters)
- References from a teacher, friend or family member
- Online resources (there are many websites which have piano instructors listed)
- Newspaper advertisements
- Public bulletin boards
- Starting a piano course at a university or college