Dr. Foley, I forgot my notebook again. Can you just email the lesson notes to me so I can read them on my phone when I practice?
Often students arrive without their notebook, still expecting lesson notes to magically appear. If you’re able to use a laptop with an internet connection, it’s a snap to use Music Teacher’s Helper to type lesson notes that can be sent to the student and/or parent the minute they leave. It’s relatively easy to wire your home studio with a reliable internet connection. However, many institutional and corporate music teachers work in studios without the benefits of ethernet or wifi connections. What to do?
I was surprised to recently discover that many of the basic functions of Music Teacher’s Helper (ie. adding and reconciling lessons) also work on a Blackberry smart phone! Here’s how to do it:
1. Download Opera Mini on your phone. Most phone carriers will equip Blackberrys with their own proprietary mobile browsers, often of dubious quality. Opera Mini renders sites more reliably, and often with greater speed than the carriers’ default browsers.
2. Once you’ve downloaded Opera Mini, go to Tools > Settings and enable Mobile View. This will compress sites, optimizing them for viewing on a mobile device.
3. Log in to Music Teachers Helper and away you go!
Be warned that much it might be best to only use basic features of MTH on a Blackberry. I’ve successfully checked my schedule, added and reconciled lessons – you probably won’t want to invoice students or change around your website unless you’re on a proper computer. If you’re interested in fooling around with Opera Mini to see what it can do with MTH before trying it out on your phone, check out the Opera Mini 4.2 Simulator.
It was an interesting experience teaching a lesson while texting lesson notes at the same time. And although I can probably create handwritten notes a bit quicker and imaginatively than texted ones, the ones created on my Blackberry might just be a little more legible.