Your mom (just because that’s who almost always contacts me – thanks moms) signed you up for flute lessons from a stranger. Was it her idea or your idea? In any case, now what? Are you excited? Are you nervous? What will it be like? Will he or she be nice? What if you make a mistake?
These are all natural questions and natural feelings you might have before attending your first lesson. Maybe you are a beginner. Maybe you’ve played for a few years. Maybe you played when you were younger and now, as an adult, you finally decide you want some private instruction that you never had in your youth. Coming to your first lesson can be apprehensive. Of course, all teachers are different, so I’ll share what you can expect from me at your first flute lesson.
Once we have decided on a day and time and length for your lesson, I’ll give you some detailed instructions.
For NEW beginners: Make sure you have a good flute in proper working condition. I’m happy to help with this process and have flutes for sale and also have connections to resources for good beginner flutes. No matter where you got your flute, and especially if it’s your aunt’s old flute, or a friend’s old flute, I’ll want to play it and make sure it works well. Having a flute in good condition is critical to getting off to a good start.
All you need to bring is a flute and I’ll provide the rest. At your first lesson, we’ll do some fun breathing and blowing games and get you started with skills to help produce a great flute sound. I require beginners to purchase a Pneumo Pro device, which I have available. You will also need a method book, a solo book, and flashcards if you haven’t previously had piano lessons. I purchase these for you and ask for reimbursement. This way, I know that you have the correct materials for your lessons.
For those who have some experience: Whether you’ve played for a few years or 20 years ago in your youth, when you come to your first lesson, I want to hear you play something. Prepare to play something slow and something fast. Even if it’s just a folk song, a band song, a hymn, a song you taught yourself, anything. Review what scales you know and be prepared to play them for me. If you don’t know any or very many, don’t worry; scales will soon become your best friends. Bring any flute music that you have.
After I’ve heard you play, I’ll point out the things I feel you are doing well and address at least one issue for you to improve your tone and/or technique. I’ll give you a practice journal to keep track of your lesson assignments and it has a place for you to record your practice time each week. If you have music that we can utilize for lessons, we’ll start by using that first. If you only have band method books, it will be necessary to purchase a different method book. I’ll also assign a solo book and a duet book. As stated above, I purchase these for you and ask for reimbursement. Like the beginners, I will also check your flute by playing it and make sure it is in good working condition. I am able to fix some small issues, but sometimes it will be necessary for you to take your flute to a service technician for repairs. I’ll give you recommendations for that.
FOR EVERYONE: Be yourself. Don’t worry about the things you don’t know. That’s why you are taking lessons, so you can learn and improve, right?
Everything I do during your flute lesson is to strive to help you become a better flute player, a better musician, and a better person.