If you’ve decided to learn to play the piano with a teacher, you might be wondering how often you should book in a lesson.
I usually advise to go for once a week, but it’s really down to yourself and what suits you. Most people go for once a week, but every two weeks or once a month is possible. With my own students, I advise that it may be difficult to progress however if you leave it any longer than once a week, as my piano lessons are designed to keep pushing you along so you can reach your full potential.
It’s also worth noting that if you commit to piano lessons once a week that it won’t actually be every week anyway due to holidays, sickness, etc. I myself have holidays (wishful thinking!) and may also fall ill now and again (hopefully not!), so out of the 52 weeks in a year it may only end up being around 30-40 lessons. That’s only around 20-25 hours of time spent in the piano lesson per year, which doesn’t seem like a lot when you put it like that. So you can even consider two lessons per week, which can be spread out.
Every piano teacher has a different cancellation policy. I ask my students to let me know at least 48 hours before the scheduled lesson (if possible) if they are unable to attend, and where possible, I will offer another date and time so they don’t miss out. I am extremely flexible when it comes to rearranging a lesson, and if I have an available space I will happily allow a pupil to fill it.
I don’t usually like mentioning affordability as this is none of my business, but it’s an obvious factor to consider before deciding upon lessons. Again with my students, if they do have any concerns about this and they don’t mind discussing this with me, I am happy to try and accommodate an arrangement to suit their finances, such as lessons every other week if that’s better for them. I can then adjust my teaching plan to suit the time we will have together, and I can also e-mail them tutorials so they can follow them for the week that I don’t see them (I create my own tutorials for beginners, so they don’t need to purchase books).
I also give my students three options to consider – 30 minute, 40 minute, or 60 minute lessons. I sometimes advise the 30 minute lessons for beginners, and/or young children. Young children can sometimes get distracted and lose focus, so it’s sometimes better to start with shorter lessons. 40 minutes is the most common (for adults especially) as I find it’s the most effective amount of time for listening, learning and taking in information. 60 minutes is great for advanced players who have a lot of content to get through, and even longer may be required for really advanced players approaching grade 8.
Finally, I advise always meeting prospective piano teachers before you begin the lessons, so you can discuss everything and plan ahead. I find that meeting in person allows me to cover everything and leave no stone unturned with a new pupil. I like to find out what style they are looking to learn, and give them an idea of my teaching methods to make sure they are happy with my approach. It also gives them a chance to meet me, and to view the environment they will be learning in. This is extremely important, as they may be having piano lessons for years and could be used to something entirely different.