Learning to Instructor // Ideas Please

Discussion in 'General Instruction [BG]' started by EricssonB, Apr 12, 2018.

  1. EricssonB

    EricssonB Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2011
    Hey there should be a sticky on this subject.

    I have been talking to the manager at a local-yet-somewhat-corporate music store about teaching guitar, bass and saxomaphone a few hours a week. Sounding like I'll get the gig, but then again, I̶ ̶h̶a̶v̶e̶ ̶n̶o̶ ̶i̶d̶e̶a̶ ̶w̶h̶a̶t̶ ̶I̶'̶m̶ ̶d̶o̶i̶n̶g̶ I have never taught before. Sure, I've been playing the lot of them for 15-20 years depending, but never had formal instruction.

    Please help. What do I do. Where do I start. Question marks.
  2. Gorn


    Dec 15, 2011
    Queens, NY
    Did you tell them you have no idea what you're doing? Personally I wouldn't feel right about teaching anything (and getting paid for it) if I didn't know how. I don't know if any amount of advice you're gonna get in this thread will be enough.
    Matthew_84 and EricssonB like this.
  3. EricssonB

    EricssonB Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2011
    Nah that was just me being a bit dramatic; slow day at work but the coffee's been flowing.

    They're aware that I haven't had any formal teaching positions (aside from helping out some friends' kids) but I've been in that store enough to where they know who I am and my playing levels. I have the chops and theory built up for beginning-to-intermediate instruction and the patience to teach.

    I guess I am just looking for a bit of general direction on how to lead a lesson.
  4. Instructions in the back room of a music store --- find out what the student wants to learn and then reach into your filing cabinet for a lesson plan that will help this happen.

    So start working on some lesson plans ---- and I know that is what you are asking us for. I'd recommend taking an instruction book you would like to work from. Use the first ten pages for beginner ideas. Next ten pages for ......

    Key here is ideas, page by page gets into copyright problems.

    Working on your lessons plans should answer most of your questions.

    Just reread your op might be a good idea to take a few lessons, or sit in on a couple, just to see what normally happens. If you have not had lessons and are going at this blind.........

    Good luck.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 13, 2018
    EricssonB and Josh Kneisel like this.
  5. Format:
    • 25% warmup and review/homework
    • 50% new materials, concepts
    • 25% something fun
    First couple lessons concentrate on fundamentals (right & left hand technique, relaxation, thumb placement, sitting and standing position)

    Try a spiral curriculum that hits upon all the components in each lesson (technique, aural skills, music theory, sightreading).
    EricssonB likes this.
  6. BassChuck

    BassChuck Supporting Member

    Nov 15, 2005
    In my experience playing an instrument well and being an excellent teacher are two different things. Yes, to be a great teacher you need to play well, but it's not enough. Teaching is an art in and of itself.
    Too many good players have tried teaching, mostly to earn a buck, and it's not a benefit for the student. Sadly, this sort of thing continues because there aren't enough great teachers.
    In the end, you have to love teaching as much as you love playing. And you have to have control of your ego enough to make the lessons about the student and not about yourself.
    Malcolm35 likes this.
  7. jallenbass

    jallenbass Supporting Member Commercial User

    May 17, 2005
    Bend, Oregon
    Maybe take a lesson on teaching with an experienced teacher of any instrument. Look for someone who has taught a lot of younger kids since you will be getting 8-year-olds and they're different to teach than teenagers.
    EricssonB likes this.
  8. jdthebassman

    jdthebassman play to live live to play Supporting Member

    talk to jeff berlin LOL
    dreamadream99 and Mushroo like this.
  9. EricssonB

    EricssonB Supporting Member

    Apr 5, 2011
    I appreciate all the good advice; seems like most of it comes from experience.

    I don't really need the money for it -- if that were the case I'd be doing something else with that time. Tbh I'm in a rut and have been trying for a while to figure something to break out of it. I planted a tree in my backyard yesterday, so that was cool. But now the tree is planted and I need something else to do. I've been playing long enough and I would like to learn to give back to the community.

    I am going to source a book this week and see if I can't build a lesson plan off of it. Thanks to everyone.
  10. hrodbert696

    hrodbert696 Moderator Staff Member

    I would suggest finding a book or set of materials to use as your basis. I've had guitar lessons from teachers who rely on TAB to teach an idea but don't have predone materials; then they sit for 2/3 of the half hour that I'M PAYING THEM FOR and write down TABs for me. Ugh. Have your material prepped ahead of time so you can devote instructional time to instruction.
    EricssonB and MalcolmAmos like this.