30DSR Day 15: Surprise your Students by Switching Up the Lesson Routine

Woohoo! You’ve made it to the half-way point of the 30 Day Studio Refresh. Congratulations on all that you’ve done so far to improve your music teaching studio. If you missed any of the days and want to catch up, you can find links to the complete 30 Day Studio Refresh here.

30DSR Day 15 Ditch the lesson plan

Surprise your students by making one little change or shift

To get you over the half-way hump today’s challenge is easy peasy. I want you to do something (anything!) to surprise your students this week.

There are many different ways that piano teachers can structure and plan their lessons, which I talk about in detail in this post on lesson planning for piano teachers.

While consistency is important, we can get in a bit of teaching rut sometimes. There’s a difference between having a routine and just being plain old boring.

So mix it up, make a change, and have some fun!

surprised music student

Student Surprise Ideas

  • Start with an yoga or tai-chi warm up instead of going straight to the piano.
  • Move your teaching chair or stand in a different spot.
  • If you normally stand, sit. If you normally sit, stand.
  • Change the order of your lessons. For example instead of scales, review pieces, new pieces, sight-reading do it all in reverse.
  • Leave something out. Maybe you’re big on scales, sight-reading or technique…but just skip it for one week.
  • Add an improvisation section to the middle of your student’s pieces.
  • Spend the first 10 minutes of every lesson taking a “walk down memory lane”. Have your students play old favourites and go back to the beginning of their method books.
  • Sightread duets together for the full lesson time. The assignments can last another week.
  • Wear a funny costume.
  • Start your lesson with a game. Need games? Check out the off-the-bench catalogue for suggestions.

Get the idea? Don’t do anything major, just make a little shift and surprise your students.

You might, in turn, be surprised at the difference it makes. 😉

Action Steps

  • Pick one thing you’re going to do to surprise your students.
  • Do it!

How are you going to surprise your students?

Are you going to use one of the suggestions above? Did you come up with something else fun to use as a music teaching studio surprise this week?

Let us know what you plan to do over in the Vibrant Music Studio Teachers group on Facebook or in the comments below. Can’t wait to see what everyone does to mix things up!

Vibrant Music Teaching members, you can access this resource inside the VMT library. Not a member yet? Find out more about becoming a member here.

Did you miss any of the posts in the 30 Day Studio Refresh? Check them out by clicking here.

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