Seven Quick and Easy Tips for New Teachers

If you’re a new teacher, you know the anxiety of starting your teaching career. What do you buy? What do you absolutely need? What is the budget like? I want to give you some quick advice if you’re a new teacher. We all need some help once in awhile:

1. Don’t buy a lot of supplies. You won’t need them all your first year, and you’ll end up stockpiling junk later on.

2. You don’t have to participate in all of the holidays and birthdays. It’s okay to relax your first year and not celebrate holidays like Easter. It’s not necessary. And you’ll need to save money later on anyways.

3. Don’t buy too many rewards/incentives! I’m still using up my stickers I bought three years ago. Buy them as you go and I suggest going to the dollar store to buy them. It’s much cheaper there.

4. You’ll figure out things as you go. Take a deep breath and find solace in the fact that we all have to start somewhere. Teaching is a learning process. You’ll get better at it as you go.

5. Don’t copy other peoples’ ideas. Create your own instead. Think about the best ideas that fit your personality and do it. It’s easy to get caught up in other teachers’ stuff, but it’s easy to just focus on yourself. If you are unique, your students will value you more. They won’t be able to find another teacher like you!

6. Know that you’ll have tough students pretty often. And learn not to take it personally. Be firm, but try not to be mean. It’s important to not let them overstep your authority.

7. Enjoy teaching. It’s easy to get caught up in the technicalities and the curriculum. Remember that your students are young pupils that are in their adolescence. Being too strict can be more harmful than beneficial. Let them laugh and share a joke or two!

Is blogging easy?

I don’t think blogging is easy at all. It’s definitely easy to get started, but it’s hard to keep it going. I mean… who would want to start something and never finish it? You have to be addicted to blogging and you have to love it. It should be the first thing you want to do in the morning. I can’t stress that enough.

What else does it take? It takes patience. It takes consistency. You have to be willing to post even when you don’t feel like it. Producing content after content should become a full time job. And you probably won’t see the results until later on. It’s all for the price of blogging.

If you think it’s an easy way to make money, you’re wrong. People make it sound easy, however, behind the scenes, they’ve had their blog for years. No, it’s not easy. Is it worth it? Yes, it is.

A Day in my Life: Piano Teacher Edition

Today is Monday and it’s kind of difficult to say whether or not I’m exactly happy for it to be Monday. However, this morning I started out by sleeping in. That’s one of the perks of working for yourself and making your own schedule. You get to plan out the day however you want.

I have quite a few things I have to do today:

1. Teach two lessons: 12:00 pm-12:40 pm and 5 pm-6 pm

2. Interview a new student at 2 pm- 2:15 pm

3. Pick up my packages in the evening

You must be thinking, “wow that doesn’t sound like a lot at all.” And you’re right. It’s not. I actually had to reschedule one of the lessons I had for today to tomorrow and I scheduled in a new lesson for a new student. Being a teacher, I have to manage my schedule really well. So it’s not like I don’t do a lot during the day because I get paid quite a lot for the times when I am teaching. Therefore, I don’t have to work a lot of hours each day. And hence, I can spend more time blogging and cuddling with my puppy Zoe.

The lesson at 5 pm is a traveling one. A piano teacher has two options, they could either teach at their studio and have students come to them or they can travel to students’ homes. It’s up to the teacher. For me, I combine both options. I find that some parents want to travel to my location for lessons and some don’t feel like driving. Around 4:20, I have to start making the trip to my student’s home and I get back home around 5:30. And then I’ll be done for the day.

Is it nice to only have to work for barely 2 hours and still make lots? Yes it is 🙂 And if you have any questions for me, please leave it in the comments below. Let me know if you like this and I’ll share more!

“Happiness is not a goal: it’s a by-product”

I’m not charging more for my lessons

Piano teachers should not charge a ridiculous amount for their lessons. I’m not saying that $50-60 is not a good price, but I am saying that $80-100 is highly unreasonable. One lesson is not enough to advance a student right away. It takes many lessons for a student to start seeing improvement. I just don’t understand how charging that much for lessons is good. You see, it’s difficult for students to continue with lessons for many years. Most will stay for a year and then quit. I’m not really surprised by that statistic because I understand that it takes passion to keep lessons going.

Many families are just not willing to pay that much for lessons. I mean… are you really going to charge a student $100 to teach them A,B,C,D,E,F, and G? They teach that at school and it doesn’t cost the family any money. If you are living in an expensive neighborhood, then charging more will work in your favor. However, every state has its own economic standard.

Lessons are valuable. I think that my time teaching is very important. If I am not being given the kind of respect that I deserve, I’m not going to chase. Piano teachers have to be valued. And many parents have little knowledge of the value of lessons. It’s okay, but don’t try to find bargain lessons. Do not take advantage of free lessons and materials from teachers. Teachers are valuable. You wouldn’t treat other people with such disrespect. So please, make sure that everything is done the proper way.

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