Lesson FAQ’s

YOUR EXPECTATIONS

What should you expect from your child’s music lesson?

a. Your child should learn the skills and techniques required to play their instrument at a level appropriate to their aptitude and the length of time they have been learning. This includes the ability to read and play music (not to be confused with playing by ear).
b. Your child should enjoy learning and playing their chosen instrument. The level of enjoyment each child experiences depends on their commitment to a regular practice routine and your encouragement of them.
c. Your child should be presented with a variety of suitable pieces of music and be encouraged, and given the opportunity, to perform these in addition to normal band or group performances.
d. Tutors are expected to support the School’s musical groups (including bands, orchestra and other groups) by following the method book used by the group, and dedicating some private lesson time to group music.
e. Your child’s tutor should communicate with you regularly regarding your child’s progress and bring to your attention any concerns he/she has.

COMMUNICATION

Each child should bring an exercise book or music diary to their lesson each week. This will be used by the tutor to write down homework and will be useful for any correspondence between parent and tutor.

PRACTICE

Initially small amounts of regular practice are necessary (10-15 minutes five times per week). This will gradually expand to longer periods (15-30 mins several times per week) as your child improves. A regular practice routine ensures that your child will steadily improve in all aspects of their playing. Don’t expect miracles and do give lots of praise if it has been a good practice. Always check the homework requirements in your child’s notebook.

EXAMINATIONS

A decision as to whether your child sits for practical examinations should be made after discussion with your child and your child’s tutor. Exams do not appeal to everyone and each child will respond differently to an exam situation. An exam requires consistent and dedicated practice if it is to be a positive and rewarding experience for the child. The pieces in the exam syllabus are chosen to complement scales and exercises which are set for the exam.

Exams can:

1. Ensure that basic skills and techniques are learnt progressively;
2. Set a standard for performance and a goal to work towards (for those who need a little extra motivation to practise);
3. Develop individual performance skills;
4. Provide a sense of achievement.

Even if you decide against exams, your child should still be encouraged to learn scales and exercises to ensure that their instrumental technique is solid.

In addition, a variety of music pieces should be set by your tutor to provide reinforcement of skills and technique, enjoyment and challenge.

Tutors have an obligation to ensure that each child is exposed to different styles of music – not just those the student likes.

This will lead to your child becoming a well-rounded musician.

Be prepared to buy music books if your tutor suggests it.

Children enjoy playing a variety of fun and stimulating music.