Bring Sloppy Students Under Control by Finding the Notes

Note: This is the first post in my Six Favorite Music Teaching Techniques series.  You can download my one-page printable cheat sheet of all six techniques here.I’m sure this has happened countless times in your music lessons: You put a piece of challenging new music in front of your student, and, curious to see how […]

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The Surprising Secret to a Flourishing Music Teaching Business

Giving my students great experiences on stage is the most important thing I do as a music teacher.  Once they tap into the magic of making honestly good music for an appreciative crowd, the crappy aspects of teaching music evaporate.You know the crappy aspects I’m talking about: Sure, they’d like to practice “Norwegian Wood,” but they’re just […]

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How to Talk to an Upset Student

A powerful listening skill that helps you get to the heart of the matter.Ella shuffles into my studio, half-size guitar dangling in one hand, and Mattie, her doll, in the other. Just six years old, Ella is one of my youngest students. She’s usually bubbly, and last week she left excited to work on the […]

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How to Email Your Music Students About a Rate Increase

OK, you’ve decided to raise your rates.  Time to email your music students.You sit at your computer.  Your heart accelerates.  You type a few words, and nausea churns in your gut.  How do you write this without sounding like a douchebag?And what if it drives away your students?  Could this one email destroy your business?I […]

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4 Reasons to Stop Competing With Other Music Teachers

Check out my Facebook Live broadcast on this topic.I was gushing to my mom earlier this week about my upcoming course for music teachers, and as is often the case when I hyperventilate about something, she had some words of caution.“Aren’t you kind of shooting yourself in the foot though, honey? Helping other teachers?” she […]

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Run Your Business Like a General

The greatest battles of life are fought out daily in the silent chambers of the soul. – David O. McKayThis tree-hugging pacifist has joined the military.Not literally, of course. The army wouldn’t want my bad eyes, bad back, and (as soon as the shooting starts) bad attitude.  But I’ve been applying some military discipline to […]

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My FREE Rate Calculator for Music Teachers

Fun fact: The ancient Romans believed you could predict the future by examining the entrails of sacrificed animals.Another fun fact: 47% of independent music teachers use this method when setting their rates.How did you choose how much to charge your students? Did you make a thorough evaluation of the value of your offer, analyze your […]

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How to Teach a Kid Guitar and Stay Out of Rehab

Check out my Facebook Live demo of this technique.I am a masochist. Since 2003, I’ve become famous in Seattle for teaching kids aged 4-7 to play guitar. Perhaps in my retirement I’ll expand my legacy by choreographing goldfish.I never planned on specializing in teaching young kids–I’d make a terrible kindergarten teacher.  But in 2006, word got […]

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