A teacher is someone that ought to adjust fast when changes occur for the sake of their students. If you just switched your in-person music sessions to online classes, you need to make them fun for your students to want to come to class. Here are tips for making virtual music classes more entertaining:
Breakdown the sessions
When it comes to online teaching, timing is very critical which means that you need to work on it first. You need to break down your online session into different segments than you would do face-to-face classes. This is because no matter how interesting your sessions may be, staring at a screen for hours may strain your eyes and make it difficult for you to focus. How can you achieve this? The trick is to break down the theory that you want to disseminate to your music students in small bits so that you have them digesting information into small chunks. If you are using slides to teach, this means avoiding the ones with lengthy explanations and a lot of text as they tend to be boring. You could also mix up the tempo of your classroom sessions by adding a couple of activities between your sessions that will leave students anticipating the next class.
Incorporate performance practices
Having had a long class session, it is fun to crown the end of a session by having your students demonstrate performance practices. To make it more exciting, you can have them dress up as though they are performing to set the mood for this exercise. Given that during a virtual class it is difficult to keep track of everyone when they are performing on their end, you could pick a few students each class session for this exercise and alternate them often. Performance practices should entail how they walk into the stage, the posture that they take, and how they take a bow. It should also include how they adjust a musical instrument be it a guitar or piano and how to get ready to perform for an audience.
Moreover, one of the most important exercises that shouldn’t go unmentioned is on how to set up a home studio. Talk about the basics such as the use of audio interfaces. These are foundational tools in home-based music production software that marry the instruments, speakers, and computers together for effective production. Such tools are critical in the music industry and your students need to learn about them from the onset. While at it, ensure that students have fun doing such a practice. This way each student will be looking forward to the day that they get to perform before the class.
Ensure that your students feel valued
During a virtual class, isolation can be a big problem and can make some of your students feel demotivated. They may think that no one will notice when they miss a class, log out, or stay quiet during an entire session. Music is meant to be fun. To remedy this problem, you need to ensure that each of your students feels valued. Among the things that you can do to achieve this is by knowing your student’s name and using it all through the class session while ensuring that they know your name especially when you have a large class.
You could also make follow up on the practical lessons that you did in the previous lessons. Given that music is mostly hands-on, you can allow your students to play some chords that you taught them. Additionally, you could explore your student’s interests and allow them to work on the things that they love. This way, you will also give them a chance to showcase their potential. Lastly, you can ensure that you provide them with feedback on the work that they have done and constantly encourage them to keep going.
Have students work on songs they know
When you are starting your first lesson, it is good to start with what the students are familiar with. This strategy helps you set the pace for the tough lessons that will follow. Often, you will find that your students have memorized certain pieces of the music they know and they will enjoy playing that. Once you have their mood elevated with the known, you can now move to what you want them to learn. You will find that they will easily adjust as they try to relate it to what they know.
Virtual learning can be boring. You, therefore, need to ensure that you incorporate learning methods that make it exciting for your students. Strategies that involve breaking down sessions, performance practices, making your students feel valued, and having them play the songs they know will make your class fun.