Hello Fellow Academy Music Parents,
I hope this finds you safe and well during this unprecedented time, which continues to change daily. As I’m sure you know, the Academy has shifted to online lessons until at least Saturday, April 4th.
I know this is new and different territory for some people. One of my kids has done online lessons with the Academy during snow days for years with great success. The other has never done an online lesson. As a parent, I find myself approaching the policy with both confidence and uncertainty.
My 12 year old violinist can do the online lessons independently. I make sure the session gets started okay and then I don’t see her for an hour. It’s pretty wonderful, and I realize a privilege compared to a parent of a 5 year old who still needs a lot of direction. Is it as good as an in-person lesson? Nope, but an online lesson is better than no lesson. We have found online lessons to be quite effective in allowing her to progress through her material and to move on to new things each week. If nothing else, that provides a small feeling of normalcy right now.
I’m less confident about the sound distortion of a trombone over the airwaves for my 10 year old. However, I’m still willing to try.
Here’s why I recommend online lessons:
- We have experience with other elements of the online lesson and they have worked fine.
- I trust his teacher will make any adjustments he can think of to make it work.
- This might not suit my personal needs perfectly, but it’s a small sacrifice in the overall world picture.
- Weekly contact with his teacher is better than a several week vacuum of no instruction.
I encourage you all to hang in there and give the online lessons a try. Please do not immediately call the office demanding a refund for lessons that can’t be held in person. If the Academy grants refunds, that means they can’t pay teachers, who likely count on the lesson income to live. This is a national safety issue beyond everyone’s control – ours, the teachers’ and the Academy’s. It requires all of us to change our daily habits to stay healthy. What we can do is be kind to our fellow humans and be willing to make some sacrifices in the short term until we are on the other side of the curve.
If you have any specific questions about online lessons or have your own experiences to add, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org If we get enough useful input we can consider putting it together in a blog post to publish to the Academy community so all parents can benefit.
I hope you all stay safe and can enjoy some beautiful music in your homes during the next several weeks.
Mason Academy Parents