Since graduating, I have gotten back into teaching private lessons while I wait for a full time teaching position. Before I started, I began gathering and creating the materials I would need for my first lessons, such as my contact sheet. I found the document I previously used when I taught before graduate school, and noticed that I had a blurb about visiting my lesson blog.
“Oh yeah, I have a lesson blog…I should probably use that again.”
I opened up my WordPress.com account and there it was, my abandoned lesson blog. This was my chance to make it how I initially envisioned it; another medium to connect with my students and continue their education outside of our weekly lesson.
Blogs have evolved from personal diaries to content management systems and major influential websites. Private music lesson studios are no exception! Having a website or blog devoted to your studio or lesson service does 3 things for you:
1. It gives you credibility. You have real estate on the internet. Your prospective and current students can see your biography, read your teaching philosophy, and can contact you for more information about scheduling and rates all from visiting your site. You have created a brand or service that you are promoting on the internet.
2. It takes your students beyond your lesson. The content on your blog can cover a plethora of areas:
- Practice tips
- YouTube videos of artists/performers they may want to emulate
- Pieces they may want to learn
- Interesting articles about music education
- Provide parents with resources
Your blog can encourage your students and their parents to take their education a step further into their own inquiries and discoveries. It creates conversation between student and teacher, student and parent, and parent and teacher. You are now a teacher and a resource to them.
3. It provides a place to list “things to work on for the next lesson,” or as it is more affectionately known, “homework.” What I did with my lesson blog was create a page for each student that is password protected. Those pages are titled, “Log,” but have a URL that includes their name: lindsayslessonblog.wordpress.com/studentname. This is where I post their tasks for the next lesson. They can also leave comments on the page if they have questions.
You’ll also notice that my students are listed as categories on the main navigation menu. That is so I can tag posts specific to their instrument/interests so they can have their own “personalized” blog feed. Of course, all students can access the full blog with all of posts. This is a great way to ensure that the student sees the content that you posted with them in mind.
“So is it absolutely necessary to blog as a private studio teacher?” you ask.
No. It’s definitely not necessary. But if you aim to inspire your students to explore our musical world on their own, then a blog is a great medium.
Give it a try, private teachers! Let me know if I can help!