What makes a terrific music teacher is greatness. Greatness is what you find it all terrific teachers but is a rare and beautiful thing. Although it is difficult to list what makes a good music teacher great it is those qualities that all teachers should strive to be and the standard of excellence all schools and parents should look for in teachers both today and in the future. The following are a few of the traits I believe to be found in all great music teachers. I believe all great music teachers touch their students’ hearts. They make their students feel that they care about them and they want them to succeed. They do this by making each student feel like they are the only student they have.
Whether they convey this via empathy, humor, eye contact, or something else the student feels safe emotionally. Because they feel their teacher sees them and this validates a student’s desire to be recognized building their confidence leading them to work harder to please their music teacher. Great music teachers don’t let students get away with being lazy or shoddy in technique desire to perform their best. What makes a terrific music teacher great is that they encourage their students’ best performances in ways that create a stronger desire in a student to want to perform their best without negativity, putting them down, or humiliating them.
A great teacher strokes their students’ egos in ways that finesse the best effort without undue pressure. Great music teachers are experts at communicating technique and the fundamentals. They also know great music can only be made after the basics of music theory and how to play an instrument correctly are learned. Great teachers convey the standards of excellent playing clearly and concisely in order to get the most practice out of a student’s time of instruction.
Great music teachers command respect even even though these teachers clearly bond with each student they are clear in the standards of excellence expected from each and every student. Because they begin by instilling the fundamentals of making music correctly, by teaching posture, breathing, finger and hand positioning, and the scales first, their technique will feel natural and second nature.
This allows the student the possibility of making an instrument his own. This gives a student the potential to become a great musician in their own right. Great teachers command respect naturally in that a student will feel bad if they come to class unprepared. They will not want to be seen as not ready to participate. A terrific music teacher that has greatness makes their students feel a desire to be great musicians themselves.