You’ve decided to start teaching.
Now that you have thought things over and have decided to become a private music teacher, here are some new questions you need to ask next:
- What are the hours that you are going to teach?
- What is the age group that you will teach?
- How much are you going to charge?
- What can you do to make your studio comfortable and inviting?
- Where will you buy the books and tools that you will need?
- How will you market your business?
- Do you want to have a website?
I will break these down into manageable pieces of information so you can work on a few at a time.
Your business hours and age groups
If you are teaching children, the best time is after school. Don’t teach to late in the evenings. Young children don’t do as well with the lessons in the evenings. I find they start getting tired around 6:30pm. They are paying attention when the lesson is too late. The best time slot is right after school. They are still pumped up from being at school all day. Adults can take the later time slots if you want to teach until 8:00 or 8:30pm. I suggest that you don’t teach on the weekend, use the weekends for makeup lessons. The week end is a great time to prepare for the next week.
It has been my experience that families are too busy on the weekends and end up canceling at the last minute.
How much will you charge?
Find out what other teachers in your area are charging. You want your rates to be competitive. When people are looking for a teacher, they will comparison shop. They are going to be looking for a deal. Use your incentives to offer a great deal to a new customer, but don’t undercut your competition so much that you look too inexpensive. If your prices start a little lower than your competition, you can give yourself a raise at the beginning of the next year and still be able to draw new customers.
How will you layout your studio? This is a fun part of your new career!
Make the studio “kid friendly”. Make it comfortable with books, puzzles, colors and coloring books, stuffed animals and snacks. You want to have things to keep other family members busy if they come into your home during the lesson.
Snacks! I love having a table with treats available for the students. Especially since they are just coming in from school and are hungry. They will concentrate a lot better if they have a little something in their tummy. You do have to be careful when it comes to food allergies. Find out if the kids have any and then prepare to proper treats.
Resources for Your Business
Where are you going to buy your books and other teaching materials? Make sure you pay attention to what different retailers have to offer. I have found one store in my town where I can get just about any book for teaching. If they don’t have it in stock, they can get it within 1 to 2 weeks. I have found other businesses that don’t have a very good selection for the books I need. Find out if the store you choose offers a discount to teachers.
Just a few things at a time. Bite size pieces to get you thinking. Teaching could be an amazing opportunity for you.