The calendar year might not change, but for anyone teaching children, September certainly feels like the start of something new. We resurrect old routines, start new ones, and introduce new students into our teaching studios.
So at the Duet Partner Teachers' Lounge on Facebook, we recently asked our teachers about their top three tips for getting back into the rhythm of teaching. Here are a few of the answers:
Clean out the teaching resources.
You might do this in the spring when the "spring cleaning" bug hits, but September is another great time to take an inventory of your tools and materials. Are you someone who collects games for your students? Printouts? Worksheets? Sheet music? Sometimes more is better, but sometimes curating the library of resources allow you to get more out of each one. Music teacher consultant and organizer extraordinaire Amy Chaplin presented a webinar to Duet teachers where she shared her approaches for editing and organizing her teaching resources. You can watch her helpful presentation here.
Block out your specific activities.
Planning out your teaching schedule and your personal time is one of the most important ways you can prepare for the onslaught of the school year. Many teachers spend hours at the end of the summer mapping out their recurring lesson teaching schedule. In many conversations with teachers, Duet has heard that this is one of the most painful tasks of the year! That's why we created the Season Smart Scheduler, which automatically pairs your availability with your students' preferred lesson times. After you've created your teaching schedule, block off your personal time so that you know when you can practice your own instrument, disengage from your clients, spend time with your family, etc.
Plan your lesson flow.
The more you streamline and automate your lesson plans, the more you can focus on your students' individual needs. Duet Partner teacher Brittany Gardner introduces this concept in Episode 9 of her course, "Setting Up An Independent Music Teaching Studio." As one of the commenters shared on Facebook, "The more I can delegate to an automated system, the less stress and chaos it is for my anxious brain."
Do these tips resonate with you? What would you add to the list?