Here are some sources for finding a local instructor:
- Contact your local music school or music academy.
- Inquire at local musical equipment stores.
- Contact your local symphony for referrals.
- Contact local religious organizations.
- Advertisements (any of the above locations may have ads posted).
Now that you know where to find an instructor, how can you make sure he/she is the best for your needs?
- Ask for references from students currently receiving instruction.
- Does the teacher put their students in competitions e.g. all-County, All-District, All-State etc. If so, how well do their students perform in competitions?
- Does the teacher know about musical opportunities for students in the community e.g. community bands or orchestras?
- Will they ensure there are opportunities for their students to perform in recitals or in public?
I would consider it important to receive positive answers to each of the questions above. I would consider the answers to the following questions when comparing different flute instructor’s rates:
- What type of professional experience does the teacher have?
- How long have they been teaching flute?
- Where did this instructor go to school for flute?
- Is the flute the teacher’s primary instrument?
A student that thrives in a very structured learning environment may do better with an instructor that provides the same lesson plans and practice assignments to all their students. Yet some instructors look to spark a passion for the flute by catering their instruction around the musical interests of their students. Try to match the student’s learning style with an instructor’s teaching style.
Also, some instructors tend to teach their students by the Suzuki method. In general, the Suzuki method is described as learning music by ear instead of learning to read and play by musical notation. Beginners may quickly learn to play musical compositions by hearing it using this method. However, one criticism of this style is that many students of the Suzuki style may develop a weakness in their ability to read music. Therefore, if your student learns by this style, I recommend they also learn to read sheet music at some point if they wish to pursue flute performance as a profession.
Just make sure that you talk to several teachers before you choose one. Don’t pick a teacher just because they are living in your neighborhood and it’s convenient. Two years of bad instruction not only is a waste of money but if the student decides to get serious about playing the flute, they may find that they’ve picked up a lot of bad habits that could set them back several years. Please find a good teacher from the start!
Sharon provides professional flute lessons at a reasonable price for all of her clients. Sharon can answer any questions you may have about her services. Contact Sharon Fogarty today to schedule a free flute lesson consultation. If you have any other questions or comments, please contact her.