Remote lessons have been working well for many students, especially school-age students over the age of 13, and adults. In addition, students (of all ages) in the Suzuki Guitar program who have a dedicated home teacher have been doing fine with it. That said, we do expect all students to return to in-person lessons eventually and to use the remote lessons only as a backup for when they are unable to make their in-person lesson.
We don’t recommend "remote only" lessons for beginners under the age of 10.
Key Topics for Remote Lessons (via Zoom)
- How fast is my internet connection? (This can be tested)
- Can I connect using a hard wire (ethernet cable)? This is the ideal for remote learning, with best video and sound quality, and stability of connection.
- Is my equipment up to date (recent laptop or tablet, high quality router, etc)?
- Is there a good location that is quiet and well lit, where I can take the lesson?
- For children under the age of 13, is there a parent/helper who will be part of all lessons to take notes, help with setup and tuning, find books and music, and even print out new music provided via Google Drive, or sent via the Zoom chat?
- Is there some compelling reason why you can't come in for an in-person lesson?
Some students are not as successful with remote lessons and would like to maintain in-person lessons, and avoid all remote learning.
We fully embrace this preference and are happy for children to return to in-person learning as soon as possible.
Key Topics for In-Person Lessons
- Masks are not and have never been required for children, and teens for any lesson with any instructor.
- I understand that I will take a remote lesson in the event of a cancelled in-person lesson, or I will be able to defer a small number of in-person lessons to the end of the year makeup weeks (number of permitted deferred lessons is specific to each teacher’s policies and availability).
Hybrid lessons are a combination of Remote and In-Person. One scenario could be 3 lessons remote and 1 lesson in-person (though other ratios are possible). In this scenario, the 4th, in-person lesson, is advantageous for this student because the teacher can address any issues at that time which are problematic to address remotely, namely sitting & hand positions. Further, the condition of the instrument & strings as well as sizing are more easily evaluated in person. In terms of music-specific elements, an in-person lesson affords the ability to resume the standard practice of playing along with the teacher in duets or with accompaniment. Corrections to rhythm and tempo are easier and more immediate in an in-person lesson.
Besides having a better ability to address the aforementioned issues in person, the teacher can assist with correct organization of music, provision of books and sheet music.