Policies & Expectations
I will review my policies at the first lesson with each student and parent, but please read through so you are familiar. Sometimes I can't cover everything in a phone call!
What I Require Of You
Weekly Homework Completion
Parental involvement is a must! Children (and teens!) are young and still learning how to invest their time wisely. Without you keeping them accountable, they may skip following what I've instructed them to do (in their assignment notebook) and spend their practice time as they prefer. Though they are encouraged to spend time at the piano for fun, when they are practicing, they should be following my instructions.
Practice, Practice, Practice!
This is what determines the degree of your success. It will be a waste of your money and my time if this is not a priority. I expect a minimum of 5 days of weekly practice, reflective of your student's age and ability, at a minimum of 2 hours a week. See more below.
For your benefit, I expect you to arrive 5 minutes before your lesson time, so that I may begin the lesson on time and your student gets the most value for their tuition.
Hearing the student’s emotions from a third party is very helpful, especially as I first am getting to know them. Knowing whether they are feeling excited, anxious, overwhelmed or under-stimulated provides insight to mold the teaching process. After all, I want what is best for them.
Protocol for entry and exit from lesson:
At time of Student's lesson, students are encouraged to simply walk in and take a seat on the couch. (I am expecting them and the door should be unlocked.) I will finish with the previous student and then they will switch places until the previous student's parent arrives, at which time they will walk to their parent's
car. Please do not wait for the previous student to exit! You student's entry is my queue that it is time to switch!
Parents are always welcome to sit in on their student's lesson, although students are usually more focused when their parent is not present. If a parent needs to speak to me, please either do so at the beginning of your student's lesson, or via email, phone call, or text. If you wait till the end of their lesson, you may be cutting into someone else's time.
Because specific times are set aside for specific students, a student who does not
attend a lesson may simply miss the benefit of that lesson. I do not guarantee
make up lessons for missed lessons. Remember, your tuition pays for more than your weekly lesson. It is never my intention to be harsh, I understand that things come up (and sickness is unforeseen!). I will always try to work with you in case of unexpected occurrences. I simply have this in my policy to protect my personal time.
If *I* have to cancel lessons for an unforeseen reason, I will either find a make-up time that works for both of our schedules, or make up that week of lessons at the end of the term, usually by fitting in additional lessons preparatory lessons before recital, put possibly afterwards. This assumes I have already spent my one extra week of vacation that I have built into my tuition.
I expect students to practice their music assignments during the week, and record daily
how much time they have spent practicing. (you miss the benefit of this discipline if you just wait till the end of the week to guess how much time you spent!)
Students must attain their parent's signature attesting that they have recorded the correct practice times. I require 2 hours per week for beginning students, 3 hours per week for intermediate students, and 4 hours per week for advancing students. Students 10 years and older should add up their total week's time themselves as well as attain their parent's signature verifying that these are correct practice times.
Practice time does NOT include time spent completing any theory homework. I will keep track of each student's total yearly time practiced and will provide incentives and rewards for their effort.
What You Can Expect From Me
This includes explanation during lesson time and homework so that students understand WHY music works the way it does. This also helps them write their own music.
This is essential to being fully musically literate, and my curriculum makes it fun!
Sheet music tailored to the student’s level
I spend a lot of time selecting music for each student’s individual personality, gifts and ability, particularly for Christmas and Spring recital, but also for other occasions.