Flute Teachers: How to Get the Most From Your Students
‘How do I get the most from my students?’ is a question perennially asked by teachers, whether they are teaching math or music! There are a few strategies which all flute teachers worth their salt ought to have up their sleeves which will ensure your students are engaged and working hard on their flute playing.
Engage your students
As soon as you induce your students to start taking responsibility for their learning, you can be sure that they will engage much more in your lessons and with their flute playing in general. At some point in their teaching career, every flute teacher has had to deal with a reluctant or disinterested student – let’s have a look at some tricks to bring those students out of their shell…
• Get to know your students – what genre of music do they like playing? What sort of teaching style do they respond best to? Be sure to find out and act accordingly!
• Mix it up – make sure that you and your student don’t fall into a rut every lesson. Keep skill drilling, such as scales and arpeggios, to a minimum and be sure to interject the drills with some more fun performance work.
• Target setting – when students know they have an impending exam or performance around the corner, they will work with much more focus in their flute lessons.
Know your skills
Correct application of your teaching style is half of the way to ensuring your students are making the most of their lessons. It’s imperative that you accept your students on the basis of your own teaching strengths; if you are experienced and enjoy teaching advanced adult flautists, don’t accept a beginner child as a flute student! Although you may view it as a teaching challenge, the student deserves a teacher who is experienced in their craft and with that specific student clientele.
Motivate and inspire
One of the most important, yet undervalued, aspects to teaching is the gift of the teacher to inspire and motivate their flute students. This skill is imperative in getting the most from your students and ensuring that they go far with their playing. Let’s have a look at some of the best ways to inspire your students:
• Include as much performance work in your lessons as possible! Your students are much more motivated by the concept of free flute play rather than getting bored practicing scales every lesson.
• Encourage your students to do some extra-curricular playing – you could ask them to get involved with their school orchestra, for instance.
• Offer to play with your student in a duet – they will be able to learn from your playing and aspire to reach a similar standard.
• Feel free to discuss opportunities to take grade exams or audition for chances to perform the flute. You obviously shouldn’t push your student into anything they don’t want to do, but it’s always worth starting the conversation.
Getting the most from your students is a question that many flute teachers will ponder at some point. You can’t go wrong if you focus on engaging, motivating and inspiring your students – make sure you recruit students who you are experienced with and happy to teach too!
Musical people are often artistic also in temperament. It would not be easy creating a plan that would suit all the types of attitude your students have. You would have to be creative in thinking up ways you can sustain their interest and bring out their best during your flute lessons. Good thing there are a number of help you can get from the internet. Just have patience sorting through the mountain of information and you sure will find the right formula for your efforts.