It is widely recognised that a teacher plays a very important role when your child is starting to learn music. With this mind, we thought it may be helpful to consider who can be a teacher and how to find the right teacher for your child.
An unregulated industry
In the world of music teachers, it is largely an unregulated industry. This basically means that anyone can decide to become a music teacher and start providing lessons from the comfort of their own home. They may not need to be super experienced but simply know a few things about music here and there. Whilst this type of teacher experience may be cheaper, it is important to consider various factors before going with this teacher. A main thing to consider would be do they have basic ‘elements’ in order to teach your child. For example, a valid ‘Working With Children Check’ is very necessary in order to ensure the safety of your child. In addition, it may be worthwhile to read some reviews about the teacher or at least speak to another student and their parent before signing your child up for lessons so that you can gauge whether or not the teacher is a good match for your child.
Finding a connection
Another important factor to consider when choosing a teacher is whether or not the student and teacher have a good connection. It is one thing for the teacher to have all the necessary skills and qualifications, but it is just as important for the student and teacher to feel comfortable with each other. Learning music often involves taking risks and getting out of your comfort zone in order to be the best musician you can be, so it is very important that the student feels like they can do this, free from judgement. Instead, the student should feel comfortable to be the best they can be in front of the teacher.
What’s your specialty?
Particularly in the world of singing, there are different genres; opera, classical, jazz, contemporary – you name it! With this in mind, it is important to consider what type of singing style your child wishes to study. If your child is wishing to study opera, it is probably a wise decision that you do your research and find a teacher who is qualified and has experience in teaching this type of genre. This will ultimately help to ensure that you get the best out of your lessons. It also helps to ensure that your child will be on the right path to transforming into the type of singer they so wish to be!
Inexperienced… Under a mentor?
If you have decided to go for a less experienced teacher, we recommend asking them if they are under a mentor or perhaps even have a teacher themselves. Mentors for inexperienced teachers can be particularly useful as they can assist the inexperienced teacher to navigate the learning experience. If the new teacher does not have a mentor this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but may mean that you are not getting the greatest learning experience for your child.
Qualifications? Cost versus efficiency
This point is kind of entwined with two points. Often teachers who are much more highly qualified are also much more expensive. Likewise, teachers with less experience may be more cost-efficient but be lacking in formal experience. When choosing a teacher you will ultimately have to consider various factors. If you are still new to singing, there is no harm in picking a less experienced teacher. However, if you are considering taking your singing path a little bit more serious, we would be happy to guide you to a teacher that has perhaps had a few more years of music experience. Ultimately, you must make a choice that you think will work best for your child and their musical desires.
When choosing a music teacher, we may not consider the studio to be a major factor. Often we are more interested in factors such as price, location, experience. However, often the more experienced music teachers will have a more strategic studio setup. What we mean by this is that students may be able to record songs and practice in a soundproof room as opposed to in a spare room. If you are hoping to pursue quite a professional music career, we recommend that you seek out a teacher who has a professional studio space, so that you can get the most out of your music lessons and hopefully gain some experience with professional gear!
When choosing a teacher we think it is most important that they conduct themselves in a professional manner. As you are paying them to teach you, you can expect them to come prepared and have a strong knowledge of what you hope to achieve in your musical journey. Here at SVA, our teachers have a deep desire to know each of their students and push them to reach their full potential.
Before choosing a teacher we recommend you ask them basic yet important questions. For example, do they have general medical knowledge or are aware of an action plan in case of an emergency? At SVA we also make sure all of our teachers have a certified Working With Children Check in order to ensure the needs of our students. It is definitely wise to consider such factors to ensure your teacher is committed to your musical journey!