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#2024598 - 01/31/13 11:37 AM How long do you need in your day before you start teaching?
Peter K. Mose Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 1382
Loc: Toronto, Ontario
Here's a little item I have observed/pondered over the years in my own teaching, and I'd be curious to hear from others of you. How many hours do you need before you are fully awake, "in fighting trim," and ready to give your first piano student of the day your best, from the time you get out of bed in the morning?

I'm very slow to become fully with it in the mornings. For me I have found it's two hours at a minimum, and preferably three, before I start teaching.

And a follow-up question: does your answer depend at all on how much sleep you had the night before, and how good the quality of sleep was? For me I'd say no, it's 2-3 hours of waking up regardless.

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#2024616 - 01/31/13 11:59 AM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
catpiano Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/20/12
Posts: 55
I've thought about this too. For me, the earliest I would want to start on any given day is 11 or 12. I normally wake up around 8:30 and need time to eat a good breakfast, maybe go to the gym, or just have "me time."

But, it also depends on how many students I have during the day. When I was teaching full time at a music school, I had one day where I had an 11:30-12:15 student, followed by a 45 minute break, followed by teaching from 1-7 without a break. That schedule made the 11:30 student seem dreadful and completely undesirable. Now, on days where I have an early student I try to schedule it so that I'm done a little earlier on those days (4 or 5 rather than 7 or 8).

In general though, if I could have a schedule that was say 9-2 or 10-3 every day, rather than 2-7, I would take it because I'd rather have afternoons off than mornings. Unfortunately, that's not really an option in this profession.

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#2024637 - 01/31/13 01:02 PM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
I think it depends who the first student of the day is!
_________________________
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

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#2024643 - 01/31/13 01:07 PM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
rada Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/07/06
Posts: 1124
Loc: pagosa springs,co
I like my mornings for personal practice and afternoons for teaching.

rada

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#2024658 - 01/31/13 01:42 PM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
dumdumdiddle Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/16/06
Posts: 1267
Loc: California
I teach my early childhood music classes at 9:30. If I'm not quite awake when I arrive to teach, I certainly am after 30 minutes of 10 two-year-olds.
_________________________
Music School Owner
Early Childhood Music Teacher/Group Piano Teacher/Private Piano Teacher
Member of MTAC and Guild

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#2024735 - 01/31/13 04:09 PM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teachi [Re: dumdumdiddle]
currawong Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/15/07
Posts: 5976
Loc: Down Under
I'd far rather teach first thing in the morning. I guess I only need an hour to breakfast, shower, dress, open up the studio and get things ready. I could happily start at 7am, and I think I'd be at my best. Some years ago when I lived near a school, I used to have a number of children come for their lesson at 7.00 or 8.00, then walk along to school. I always found they were the most productive lessons - the kids were alert, and so was I.

Originally Posted By: dumdumdiddle
I teach my early childhood music classes at 9:30. If I'm not quite awake when I arrive to teach, I certainly am after 30 minutes of 10 two-year-olds.
haha - I know what you mean. laugh
_________________________
Du holde Kunst...

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#2024769 - 01/31/13 05:05 PM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
LoPresti Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/07/10
Posts: 1304
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: Peter K. Mose
I'm very slow to become fully with it in the mornings. For me I have found it's two hours at a minimum, and preferably three, before I start teaching.

But, Peter,

Prior to the last couple of milder days, it has been ZERO during each night. Now, I am not a physicist, and only a part-time doctor, but I do know that all matter -- brain matter, included -- S-L-O-W-S D-O-W-N when it gets cold. Something about that troublesome molecular activity, or something . . .

(Oops - forgot my name for a second . . .) Ed
_________________________
In music, everything one does correctly helps everything else.

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#2024813 - 01/31/13 05:54 PM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
Stanny Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/06
Posts: 1461
Last year, I had a 7:45 AM student. It was WONDERFUL! I loved that time of my mind being fully clear. I usually wake at 6:00 am
_________________________
~Stanny~

Independent Music Teacher
Certified Piano Teacher, American College of Musicians
Member: MTNA, NGPT, ASMTA, NAMTA

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#2024862 - 01/31/13 07:35 PM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
AZNpiano Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5593
Loc: Orange County, CA
I prefer to teach in mornings. But most students are not available at that time. I really detest 8:00 PM lessons. Probably because I put the worst students at the end of the day.
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

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#2024869 - 01/31/13 07:45 PM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
Minniemay Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/07/09
Posts: 1702
Loc: CA
One of my college students told me this morning he tries to be very prepared for his lessons because he is my first student and he wants me to have a good start to my day. Isn't that thoughtful? (And he IS always prepared!)
_________________________
B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
M.M., Piano

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#2024879 - 01/31/13 08:22 PM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
Stanny Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/08/06
Posts: 1461
That's so sweet, Minniemay!
_________________________
~Stanny~

Independent Music Teacher
Certified Piano Teacher, American College of Musicians
Member: MTNA, NGPT, ASMTA, NAMTA

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#2025133 - 02/01/13 08:18 AM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 12216
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
I really don't mind morning lessons, but I don't have any. If I did, I'd end up teaching all day long, and I don't really care to go from 8am-8pm. I use my mornings for "me time" which entails Bible study, making breakfast and the rest of the meals for the day if it's a late night of teaching, taking care of bills, cleaning, practicing voice and piano, and of course, posting on this forum. smile

For some reason there just don't seem to be enough hours in the morning for me. Many things that I'd like to do and have time for in the evening after teaching and dinner, I just don't have the mental capacity for it. Once in a while I can practice some piano or voice, but usually my voice is too tired.

My ideal day would be to teach at 8am until about 3pm and then be off for the rest of the day. But when would that ever happen except if I taught Saturday mornings?
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

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#2025232 - 02/01/13 11:11 AM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2649
Peter,

It depends on what you mean by "need". smile

It is nice to have 3 hours in the morning before teaching. My earliest students are at 12:30 pm.

If I started teaching on Saturdays, I would offer 10 am lessons. It would probably be a little disruptive to home life though with the rest of the family wanting quiet and privacy on Saturday morning.

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#2025243 - 02/01/13 11:26 AM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
Overexposed Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2649
Edit: I would need one less hour if I could break the compulsion of seeing what's up on PW.

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#2025262 - 02/01/13 11:56 AM Re: How long do you need in your day before you start teaching? [Re: Peter K. Mose]
Chris H. Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/05
Posts: 2919
Loc: UK.
You could also ask how long the students need before their lesson!

When I'm teaching in school I start at 8am and those kids are barely awake. I much prefer the days where I teach only in the evenings and have the day to myself though.
_________________________
Pianist and piano teacher.

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