Using Music Teacher’s Helper to keep track of lesson times, student progress, monies owed, repertoire, and books lent (to name only a few features) can provide huge benefits to the many teachers who use the service. But it also demands a tremendous amount of discipline and detail-oriented data input to ensure that information is properly recorded, lessons are reconciled, email notifications go out to parents, prep work is done, and studios are running smoothly.
After a busy day of teaching, I often found that I couldn’t always remember everything that needed to be recorded when reconciling lessons. Typing into a laptop when teaching was out of the question, as it would divide my attention when I needed to be focusing on the student. I tried to use my iPod Touch to input information but it seemed too slow and again it took away from attention that was needed elsewhere.
What I needed was a collection system that would streamline information from lessons into a form that could quickly and accurately be inputted into MTH after lessons. After some searching I came upon the D*I*Y Planner series of free, user-configurable, and printable templates for a wide variety of productivity applications. With a bit of trial-and-error, I created a template from scratch that integrates perfectly with the tasks that need to be monitored in teaching in an MTH-equipped music studio, could be printed, photocopied, and that works as an accurate collection system of what needs to be gathered at the lesson and then entered online for student, parents, and teacher.
Fortunately, the uploading and sharing features of Music Teacher’s Helper work perfectly for this sort of project, so it was remarkably easy to go to the file area (under the My Studio Website panel of the Home dropdown menu), choose the file from my computer, mark it as available to all readers, and upload the file. Here it is:
Just click on the link above, save it to your computer, print it out, photocopy it (preferably double-sided to save paper), three-hole-punch the copies, stick them in a binder, and away you go. You’ll now be able to write down the information you need in the studio so you’ll be able to give a much accurate picture of each lesson when you reconcile online at the end of the day. After you’ve entered the data, you can either keep the paper copy of the information or toss it–but be sure to run an environmentally responsible studio and recycle all your used paper.
In case you feel that the above template above needs more tweaking, you’re welcome to modify after you’ve converted it from a PDF to Word file.
Your comments are welcome on how this type of template can be improved and modified. Specifically, is one page per lesson the best size for recording things, or would it be a better idea to combine two or more of these forms on one letter-sized page?