11 Essential Insights for Music Instructors That Others Just Don’t Get

Teaching Music: Insights from a Music Instructor

Teaching music is an extraordinary and rewarding journey; however, it comes with its fair share of challenges. Students often struggle to master the right techniques and practice diligently. As a music teacher, there are numerous valuable lessons to be learned along the way. In this article, we will explore some of the nuggets of information gained from teaching musical instruments.

1. You understand if it’s tedious, it’s probably good for you

One of the most invaluable yet monotonous exercises for music students is practicing scales. As a teacher, working on scales can be incredibly boring. However, all experienced music teachers understand that the pain of practicing scales is worth it. By enduring numerous scale exercises, students can tackle more technically demanding pieces with relative ease in the future.

2. You have lots of beginning students, and they are not exactly what you envisioned

When aspiring musicians embark on their music degree, they often imagine a career filled with prodigies. However, more often than not, music teachers are faced with a class full of beginners who lack practice and can be somewhat unpleasant to teach. Nonetheless, the enthusiasm and cuteness of some younger students make up for the lack of virtuosity.

3. You are truly inspired by your students’ passion

While not every student reaches prodigy status, their passion for music can be incredibly inspiring. Witnessing someone genuinely excited about playing an instrument reminds teachers why they entered this rewarding profession. Even if not every student bursts with enthusiasm, the presence of a few passionate pupils makes the long hours of enduring torturous noise worthwhile.

4. You have been told way too many times that your instrument causes pain

Whether it’s a painful mark on the violin’s neck or finger tip issues from guitar playing, every instrument poses physical challenges. Moreover, every student you come across will inevitably complain about the physical discomfort involved in playing their chosen instrument. The key is to encourage students to persist through the pain, as it ultimately leads to improvement and mastery.

5. You have seen people from all ranks of society inhabit the music store

Whether you rent a rehearsal space or visit a store for supplies, you encounter individuals from all walks of life. From neighborhood stoners to soccer moms looking to steer their children toward a musical path, people from various socioeconomic backgrounds are drawn to the music store. It serves as a melting pot of diverse individuals, united by their love for music.

6. You know every business trip involves extra luggage

No matter what instrument you play, it becomes an essential travel companion for business trips. For string bass players, this poses a significant challenge, while piccolo players may find it relatively easier. Musicians become paranoid about the safety of their instruments and prefer to keep them in sight at all times. The thought of borrowing another instrument in case of damage is a dreadful one.

7. You have to motivate students not to give up almost every day

Learning an instrument requires relentless effort and hard work. As a music teacher, you know the importance of keeping your students motivated and persevering through the challenges. While some students may not have the necessary determination, you always strive to give each one a fighting chance.

8. You own multiple pairs of earplugs

Teaching music can be a wonderfully loud and noisy experience, resulting in potential damage to your hearing. Although earplugs may occasionally be used to avoid the anguish of hearing yet another butchered scale, their primary purpose is to protect your most precious asset as a music lover: your ability to hear. You take the time to explain this to your students, prioritizing their health and well-being.

9. You love seeing a student play their first recital

The debut performance can be incredibly stressful for most students. Witnessing their dedication and courage as they work through their fears and perform for the first time is a delight for music teachers. It signifies their growth and potential in their future musical endeavors.

10. You have extra equipment everywhere

When students begin learning a new instrument, they often require assistance in ensuring it functions correctly. As a teacher, you have an array of repair materials, extra stands, strings, tuners, metronomes, and other trade tricks readily available to tackle any technical issues that arise. From minor adjustments to instrument repairs, you’ve got it covered.

11. You can instantly recite the many reasons musical education is critical to a healthy life

Not only are you well-versed in various regional and local statistics, but you also comprehend the therapeutic and academic benefits of musical education outlined in countless studies. Armed with this knowledge, you can effectively communicate these advantages to skeptical individuals, further underscoring the importance of music in our lives.

Teaching music is indeed a challenging adventure, but it is also a remarkable and fulfilling journey. As a music instructor, you discover invaluable lessons from your students’ passion, the importance of perseverance, and the diverse community that music brings together.

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