Music Teacher's Helper Blog

Music Learning in 2020

We know that 2020 wasn’t the best year for many of us, but it was also a year that brought some good things in terms of music.

Being isolated and making us step back from the fast paced day to day, can change our perspective quite a bit, and in music it has made both teachers and students explore new things, making the most out of their creativity.

It’s important to remember that even if it was a hard year, there were so many things we could learn from it that will stay with us even when there is no pandemic to worry about.

Did 2020 Bring Good Things?

There was no lack of time to explore and find something to get attached to, something that kept the spirits up and the hope for a better tomorrow.

This was the case for music teachers as it inspired them to make new and creative things during the pandemic.

Some teachers even learned to enjoy teaching online a lot, and this is because of a few reasons:

  • More family time
  • A change of pace
  • Learning new things and familiarizing with new tools
  • Review goals and strategies
  • Realizing that online lessons have no bounds
  • Online teaching has its own set of good things and bad things, it’s not just a worse alternative

According to the data from colorfulkeys.ie

Overall, teachers have an average of about 22 students.

The youngest ages which teachers taught skewed younger than we expected, with nearly 90% taking on students under the age of 7.

Over 60% of teachers teach 30 minute lessons as their standard format which mostly varies up to 45 minutes.

Only 3.4% of teachers said that they were not interested in composing or improvising with their students, and this is a very good thing, because most traditional music schools don’t give enough attention to composition and improvisation.

More than 90% of teachers taught online in 2020 which makes sense, and Zoom was the preferred platform.

More Personal Approach

In music education, sometimes creativity is put to the side in order to focus on performance and technique, however being in lockdown has been an interesting test.

This without a doubt gave many musicians around the world something to write about, while dealing with their own issues, this includes music students and beginners.

What happened was that many students couldn’t resist the fact that they have the skill to play an instrument and there is a lot of time on their hands. This can fuel their passion even more as it is a more personal approach to music, one that doesn’t rely on just attending classes on a tight schedule, and as consequence, students enjoy their lessons even more.

Education Through New Technologies

This has been one of the hardest things to overcome, for both teachers and students, since it’s a very different environment and learning process.

The idea of a classroom and sharing the same interests with other students it’s very important to stay motivated and invested in every lesson.

However despite the harshness of 2020, there was always a way to maintain that human connection through a virtual classroom as teachers got creative and less traditional in order to adapt.

There were many things we learned about relying on the internet and many apps such as Zoom and Skype. One of them is that these new technologies have great potential, but there are some things to overcome.

The most notable issue is that the internet, while it has no bounds, some places in the world don’t have a really good connection.

Still, even though the world will eventually get back to normal, this was a big reminder that these tools exist, and they are meant to be used.

Better Tools

Most music teachers hadn’t been able to get an”upgrade” when it comes to the tools that new technologies offer, and can in fact improve and widen the possibilities when teaching.

Making room for a home office to teach online lessons was both a useful and encouraging part of 2020 for music teachers.

Maybe redecorate a room a little, or just using an old storage that wasn’t really being used that much.

Investing in a good pair of headphones, a mic and maybe a new computer was also a big part of adapting to this way of teaching.

Parents Role

It’s true that students have to learn how to be responsible and organized on their own, but at the same time, it’s also true that parents have been very absent in general when it comes to their children’s education, and this shouldn’t be the case.

This is also a good thing if schools and teachers manage to engage with parents in creative ways.

This is definitely one of those things that doesn’t seem to hard but it’s very easy to overlook, thankfully 2020 was a step in the right direction when it comes to parents support.

Learning Experience in 2020

Most of us can agree that in many ways, 2020 was a year that made us reflect and put ourselves to the test on various areas.

For musicians in any area whether it was teaching, composing, learning as a student, it made staying at home a bit of a strange exercise, as music became a window to breathe and meditate.

Just like any intellectual process, music offered a cathartic element from its art and sounds either directly, by making or playing music, or performing another task with music to help keep a positive mind.

This was easier due to the fact that students were at home with a lot of free time.

There is a lot to have in mind moving forward to 2021 that could improve the way musicians teach and learn music, making the most of  every tool possible.

We hope to keep offering the best content and support at MTH, and we thank you for choosing us to help you with your lessons.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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