“It’s okay to be scared. Being scared means you’re about to do something really, really brave!”
Two-and-a-half years ago, I was teaching private lessons around the clock, spending all of my free time learning to play songs I didn’t enjoy, and undercharging for my services. In short, I was miserable, and I desperately needed to change both my teaching and business model. That’s when I made the switch to group guitar classes, and I have never looked back!
If you’ve been dreaming of making the jump from private lessons to group guitar classes, these simple tips can help you leverage your time, earn more money, and turn your dreams into a reality!
1. Why Teach Group Guitar Classes?
The economics behind group guitar classes are fairly straightforward: The average guitar instructor earns $39 per private lesson hour. However, the same teacher can enroll 8-students at $20 per lesson raising their hourly rate to $160 per hour. That’s a 410% increase in hourly wages!
2. Overcoming Fear of Teaching Group Guitar Classes
If you’re afraid of making the jump to group guitar classes, you’re in good company because most guitar instructors feel the same way! In fact, the first day I walked into my group guitar class, my knees were shaking, my throat was dry, and my palms were a sweaty mess. In short, I was terrified. After all, I picked up the guitar at the tender age of twenty-six. While I practiced like a man possessed, I knew my guitar skills were still minuscule compared to the skills of my teachers at the time, but I had just the right amount of audacity, desperation, and motivation to make group guitar classes work.
3. Organization and Classroom Management are Key
After a few weeks of trial and error, I discovered the key to earning more income, spending less time preparing lessons, and increasing student engagement is staying organizing and implementing a proven system.
As you can see, the class begins with tuning, finger exercises, and musical concepts, before moving onto song study and belt testing.
While you may have a great system in place, proper classroom management techniques help your classes run smoothly, increase student engagement, and keep you sane in the process.
4. Teach for Performance
Maybe I’m a slow learner, but it took me a year-and-a-half before I realized I needed to teach for performance. During my first few group guitar classes, I was teaching kids all the typical material: the minor pentatonic scale, power chords, and famous rock riffs like Smoke on the Water and Iron Man. In other words, I was doing what every other guitar teacher does with mixed results.
After the worst group guitar class of my life, I had a revelation: Instead of teaching these kids classic riffs and songs, I should be teaching them how to perform as a band using music they would love. In the process, those same songs should serve as a vehicle to teach them essential music theory concepts. To achieve that, I needed to create a system that students at every level of skill and ability would have the opportunity to play together as an ensemble.
5. Interstellar Overdrive
The first song I wrote was Interstellar Overdrive, and the kids went crazy for it! The song is easy enough for students walking in on the first day of class. At the same time, it’s challenging enough for more advanced guitarists. If you order Guitar for Kids: Rock Dojo The Complete Belt System, you can use Interstellar Overdrive for the first 4-5 weeks of class, and the kids will love it!
In fact, I have kids asking me to play Interstellar Overdrive 5-6 months after they first learned it!
If you’re ready to begin teaching group guitar classes or private lessons for kids between the ages of 6 -12 years old, order Guitar for Kids: Rock Dojo The Complete Belt System. Featuring 11-original studies for multiple guitars, five must know musical concepts, step-by-step composition guides, games & puzzles, fun characters, and a rewarding belt system, Guitar for Kids is a guitar method book for kids that actually rocks!
“My son is devouring this book!” —Amazon Customer
“This book is more fun than playing guitar!” —Mikaela, age 9