Do you teach any of your lessons online? Certainly, teaching online is a huge departure from traditional violin teaching approaches. But COVID pushed most music teachers online for at least a portion of their schedule. You may have become familiar with Zoom or FaceTime or another video conferencing platform. You may already have a favorite platform, or you may be frustrated with them all.
Some violin teachers have expanded the geographic reach and flexibility of their schedules by continuing to teach online. Others only have an online option for special occasions. It can be a backup solution when weather is too bad to travel or a student may be sick.
Regardless of the frequency of online teaching, having a way to teach online is now an essential part of running a violin teaching studio.
Duet Partner provides violin teachers with studio management tools like a teaching calendar and invoice generator, but it also offers a built-in video conferencing tool called Online Studio. We know what our music teachers need to make online teaching be the best experience it can be, since Online Studio is specifically built for music lessons, not business meetings.
3 Ways to Make Online Teaching Work For Your Violin Studio
Whether you love it or hate it, here are 3 ways to make online violin teaching work best for you and for your students.
- Decide how much you want to teach online.
There are definitely limitations to teaching violin online: You can’t reach over to the student and adjust her bow hold by moving her fingers. The tone will never be quite same as the real thing. Still, some teachers find that expanding the geographic region of their student base helps them fill in their schedules.
For example, you may choose to teach live students from 4pm to 8pm in the afternoons, the typical time students have lessons after school. But what about those hours earlier in the day? Somewhere in the world, those are “after school” hours for students in other time zones. With some marketing, you could fill in those extra hours in your day with online students from around the world.
Even if you’re happy with your in-person schedule, you may want to offer online lessons as an alternative when necessary. Hosting a lesson online for a student who feels a cold coming on is better than having them cancel altogether or working through a reschedule. Even if you choose to teach all of your violin lessons in person, it’s still a good idea to have an online option for extenuating circumstances.
- Make sure your students know how to access their lessons.
Precious minutes at the beginning of a lesson can be lost if the student can’t figure out which link to click or how to log on. It can be super frustrating for both you and the student to be sifting through emails, and it can make you look unprofessional as a teacher.
For violin teachers especially, maintaining those few minutes at the beginning of a lesson are especially important since violin students need to tune their instruments. If it takes several minutes to get online, make sure microphones and cameras are working, and then tune instruments, a violin lesson can be cut short unnecessarily.
Don’t be afraid to overcommunicate with your students about where to meet you online for their violin lesson. Duet Partner sends out automatic reminder emails to students before every lesson, including the link for the lesson in every email. Students can also log into their Duet student portal, visit the calendar for your studio and click on their lesson link. Duet’s online teaching platform, Online Studio, will launch automatically.
- Invest in your technical setup.
Any violin teacher can teach using just a phone camera. In a pinch, a simple setup like this might work. But for long term teaching, online violin lessons will work best if you invest in some simple hardware.
Start with a good internet connection. This might require an ethernet cable instead of just WiFi. You want to make sure that nothing gets dropped or delayed in your communication with the student.
A video camera in a computer or iPad is the most essential tool for online music lessons. Train your primary camera on yourself so the student always has access to an image of you and a connection with your physical presence.
For violin teachers, a secondary camera angle is really helpful for showing more detailed finger or bow positions. Point a second device (a second camera in a phone or iPad) at a closer angle just on your instrument. You might need a separate tripod or camera holder to direct the second camera right onto your violin.
Last but not least, a high quality microphone that connects to your computer will help you hear your students at their best and them hear your demonstrations.
How Online Studio Can Help You Teach Violin Online
Online Studio was designed for music lesson specifically, not for business meetings. So the number one difference between Online Studio and other video conferencing platforms is the quality of the sound. You’ll hear your violin students’ tone more clearly with Online Studio right from the start.
Additionally, Online Studio offers Music Mode, a special setting you can turn on that opens the audio pipelines even more when used with headphones.
Online Studio also offers music-specific tools that help teaching online be even more streamlined. A digital metronome, chord chart generator, on screen keyboard and more make it fun and easy to teach your violin lessons online.
And Online Studio works seamlessly with Duet, so that whenever you teach a violin lesson online, Duet automatically marks the attendance and triggers whatever invoice you have set for that lesson.
At $8/month, Online Studio is an affordable and easy add-on to your Duet account. Do you have more questions about the best way to teach violin online? Reach out to email@example.com and we’ll be happy to help you!