Planning a Music Lesson.

Planning a music lesson requires consistent effort for music teachers as they have to consider numerous factors in their lesson plans.

Music teachers have to be organized and ensure that students will receive a well-rounded and engaging learning experience. Lesson planning is also an opportunity to get creative and implement new and exciting methods in your teaching.

Although planning a music lesson can be enjoyable, it may also be an obstacle for many music teachers, especially individuals who are starting and do not have much experience with lesson planning.

If you find yourself wondering how to plan a music lesson,
we have compiled a list of tips for you to consider.

Planning a Music Lesson

1. Consider the student’s skills and level

Music students have unique strengths and weaknesses; it is important to plan your lessons according to their individual needs. If a student’s strength is listening but struggles with reading comprehension, it is beneficial to implement more reading exercises in their lesson plan. In addition, it is essential to differentiate lessons based on a student’s musical level. Beginner and advanced students require different repertoire and learning materials to ensure they will progress and address their technical development.

2. Identify the learning objectives

When meeting a potential student, it is important to know their desired outcomes and what they hope to accomplish from taking music lessons. By understanding their goals, you can create learning objectives that align with their aspirations. While it is important to tailor lesson plans for individual skills and levels, integrating a student’s personal goals will help motivate them throughout their musical journey. Therefore, while targeting the musical technicalities, you can also plan music lessons with their desired outcomes in mind.

3. Set a Time length

We often assume more time is an effective way to learn, however, it is advantageous to keep music lessons short. Learning music can overwork the brain and tire us out, especially beginner students, causing them to lose focus and be less receptive to new information. An ideal time length would be between 30-45 minutes, however, this can be discussed with students individually as some may desire or prefer a longer duration for their music lessons.

4. Repetition sees results

Implementing repetition in a student’s lesson plan is crucial to guarantee consistency and progress in their skills. When learning a new song, it is easy to forget the skills acquired after discarding it. Since students already know how to play the piece, repetition allows the teacher to focus on different areas that require more practice. Therefore, it is ideal to revisit music scores when planning a lesson and use it as an opportunity to work on specific areas aligning with that week’s lesson, such as tempo or dynamics.

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5. Set a routine

Creating a routine is a valuable practice in lesson planning. A routine can include exercises and warm-ups at the start of every lesson to prepare the student physically and mentally for their music lesson. While it may seem less time-consuming to jump straight into the lesson, preparing a student’s focus yields better results in terms of progress, concentration, and engagement.

6. Select the learning materials

Selecting the appropriate learning material will vary depending on the learning goals for the specific lesson. You will want to choose the material that focuses on specific techniques and will improve the student’s skills, such as breath control, finger dexterity, improvisation, reading and listening, etc.

You can also explore the different genres you want to focus on for a lesson (e.g. jazz, classical, pop, rock, folk, etc. ). Each genre offers the student an opportunity to practice specific techniques common in each genre and diversify their musical palette. The genre you choose for a lesson can also be based on the student’s interest, as learning can be more fun and motivating for students when the repertoire is within their interest.

7. Reflect and adjust

After planning a lesson, you should reflect on the effectiveness and adjust your approaches where needed. To help you understand where to modify, you should encourage student and parent feedback and note the successes and challenges of the lesson. You should change your lesson plan to accommodate different learning styles, skills, and learning outcomes. This reflection and adjustment will assist in improving your lessons while also accommodating the needs of your students.

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