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#2001499 - 12/19/12 01:09 AM Semiweekly Lessons for Beginning Students
lovefamilypiano Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/10/11
Posts: 45
Loc: Rexburg, Idaho
After hearing the benefits, I decided to offer and require semiweekly lessons for new beginners for the past few months.

I was concerned parents wouldn't be willing to pay twice the tuition. I was also concerned it wouldn't be as effective as I heard.

Regardless I went forward and offered it to the parents of the first four students who requested lessons. I was surprised that they all accepted it without hesitation. I promised their kids would progress four times as fast and that it would be for the first 6-8 weeks.

The first student has excelled and learned his music so quickly that he would have gotten bored after the first week. Giving him new material each lesson has helped him to learn note reading quickly and improve sight-reading as well. The second student struggled to remember many things for the first few lessons, but now seems to have a solid foundation, and is progressing well.

For both students, one who struggled, and one who excelled, I felt the semiweekly lesson was very helpful to get things rolling. The other two of the four I haven't really wrapped my head around yet, I need a little more time to measure their progress.

Are any of you teaching semiweekly lessons? Do you see positive results? I'd love to hear your experiences.


Edited by lovefamilypiano (12/19/12 02:59 AM)
_________________________
David Love
The Love Family Piano Studio
www.rexburgmusic.com

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#2001501 - 12/19/12 01:26 AM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: lovefamilypiano]
DanS Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/28/12
Posts: 568
I've been thinking about this for a while, but I haven't tried it.
_________________________
"Most pianists are poor musicians, they dissect music into bits-and-pieces, like a roast chicken" -Debussy

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#2001520 - 12/19/12 02:30 AM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: lovefamilypiano]
AZNpiano Online   happy
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5594
Loc: Orange County, CA
Firstly, to avoid confusion, you really should use the term "semiweekly" to mean "twice a week."

Of course I'd love to have all beginners have more than one lesson per week. However, I've observed these traits in the parents of beginner students:

1) They want to bargain for the lowest price and ask for sibling discounts whenever possible.

2) They want to pay for 30-minute lessons for as long as possible, even when the student is Level 5. This is the main reason I stopped offering 30-minute lessons, even for kids who have never had lessons before.

3) They want to take extra days off during Summer Break and Winter Break, and take all non-essential holidays off.

4) They will wait as long as possible to invest in a real piano.

5) Several parents have asked if it is possible to have lessons every other week. These are the most clueless parents of all.

For these reasons, it is unfathomable that parents of beginning students will pay double for semiweekly lessons. I just don't see it happening, unless the parents are very serious about their kid's piano education.
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

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#2001530 - 12/19/12 02:50 AM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: AZNpiano]
lovefamilypiano Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/10/11
Posts: 45
Loc: Rexburg, Idaho
Thanks for the clarification, they are semiweekly lessons.

What city do you teach in? Here in Rexburg, Idaho, we are saturated with teachers and I see flyers and online posts everywhere advertising lessons for $7.50 per lesson, the most expensive teacher I saw, who advertised that they had a masters in piano performance was charging $65 a month. It seems that people here are " bargaining for the lowest price."

With the exception of our college professors, I think the other piano instructors, namely teach piano as a supplemental income and not necessarily the primary income.

I was very surprised when all three parents had no complaints (and still don't) about paying double tuition. 2 of the 3 seem to be very satisfied, and the other seems to not care one way or the other, she's just glad she has a piano teacher and she's happy to write out a check without any questions.
_________________________
David Love
The Love Family Piano Studio
www.rexburgmusic.com

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#2001538 - 12/19/12 03:15 AM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: lovefamilypiano]
AZNpiano Online   happy
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5594
Loc: Orange County, CA
FWIW, the only students who take two lessons a week from me are a very advanced student (2 hours of lessons per week) and a remedial student who needs to split up the hour-long lesson into two 30-minute sessions. I have a couple of students who could benefit from (and probably should be) having semiweekly lessons, but their parents are so cheap, it's hard enough to get them to take 40 lessons a year!
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

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#2001558 - 12/19/12 04:24 AM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: lovefamilypiano]
Beth_Frances Offline
Full Member

Registered: 02/14/12
Posts: 211
Loc: Brisbane, Australia
I have four students who have 2 lessons per week. The difference in speed of development is mind blowing. It's much better value for money for the parents who commit to that. Frequent re-inforcement of concepts and less time to iron in mistakes between lessons. And success breeds success - once the kids start feeling like they're "good" at piano then they're more keen to work at getting better and better. I wish it was considered the norm for piano lessons!

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#2001617 - 12/19/12 09:14 AM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: lovefamilypiano]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
My beginners come every day for a week when they start, then I go to weekly 45-minute lessons. I try to put beginning students back to back in my schedule so I can overlap them and do some activities together.
_________________________
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

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#2001672 - 12/19/12 11:53 AM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: Minniemay]
AZNpiano Online   happy
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5594
Loc: Orange County, CA
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
My beginners come every day for a week when they start

I think this is another idea that I'm going to steal from you.
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

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#2001683 - 12/19/12 12:20 PM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: AZNpiano]
lovefamilypiano Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/10/11
Posts: 45
Loc: Rexburg, Idaho
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
My beginners come every day for a week when they start

I think this is another idea that I'm going to steal from you.


I like that idea as well. I'll stick with semiweekly and work up to it.
_________________________
David Love
The Love Family Piano Studio
www.rexburgmusic.com

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#2001693 - 12/19/12 12:32 PM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: Minniemay]
John v.d.Brook Online   content
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/18/06
Posts: 7418
Loc: Olympia, Washington, USA
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
My beginners come every day for a week when they start, then I go to weekly 45-minute lessons. I try to put beginning students back to back in my schedule so I can overlap them and do some activities together.

The daily lessons for the first week is a brilliant idea. Why haven't you posted this before?
_________________________
"Those who dare to teach must never cease to learn." -- Richard Henry Dann
Full-time Private Piano Teacher offering Piano Lessons in Olympia, WA. www.mypianoteacher.com
Certified by the American College of Musicians; member NGPT, MTNA, WSMTA, OMTA

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#2001766 - 12/19/12 03:07 PM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: Minniemay]
lovefamilypiano Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/10/11
Posts: 45
Loc: Rexburg, Idaho
Originally Posted By: Minniemay
My beginners come every day for a week when they start, then I go to weekly 45-minute lessons.


Do you charge the same rate during that first week?


Edited by lovefamilypiano (12/19/12 03:08 PM)
_________________________
David Love
The Love Family Piano Studio
www.rexburgmusic.com

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#2001840 - 12/19/12 06:11 PM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: lovefamilypiano]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
No, I charge a special package rate. The lessons can vary from 30-45-60 minutes. What I love is that I get to know the student quite quickly and get to teach good practice habits and reinforce them daily. After the first week, the students are enrolled in my regular fee schedule.
_________________________
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

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#2002268 - 12/20/12 04:50 PM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: lovefamilypiano]
Bluoh Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 421
Loc: Canada
I only offer extra lessons when a performance or exam is coming up soon. I think students need time to practice and digest the material before they can really improve; a week to do this seems to work really well.

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#2002306 - 12/20/12 05:57 PM Re: Bi-weekly Lessons for Beginning Students [Re: lovefamilypiano]
Shutoku Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/11/12
Posts: 11
The only way I get two lessons per week from a student is if they are taking two different disciplines (I type this awaiting a girl who takes voice thursdays and drums on tuesdays ) or I have rock band classes, where most have a private lesson one day and band on another day (though some schedule so they have both the same day)
I would love to make all students have two lessons a week, not just to start but on-goingly, but I think few would go for it.
Partly for financial reasons, but also because many kids are also involved in sports, or dance, or other extra curricular activities and scheduling can become a nightmare ever with one lesson a week!

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