What You Need To Know
Online lessons are live, not pre-recorded. There is opportunity for interaction, just like you would have in the studio. We can talk to each other and see each other.
You can have lessons in the comfort of your own home on your own instrument, no more driving to lessons!
You can still have your lesson, even if you have a cold. You can’t catch colds over the internet! You can have your lesson from anywhere in the world, so if you travel or move, no problem!
The teacher cannot physically move your fingers or hand into position. Instead, the teacher will demonstrate and describe what to do. There may be an interruption to internet service from time to time. However, in my experience, this is minimal.
What Equipment Do I Need?
No need to go out buying any fancy, expensive equipment. You will need something for sight and something for sound, both for you and me.
You will need two electronic, internet enabled devices. This can be a combination of your desk top computer, laptop, tablet or mobile/cell phone. One will be for face to face interaction, the other will be for a view of your keyboard.
I use a web cam attached to a tri-pod as my computer screen doesn’t have a webcam. This is for your view of my keyboard. If you don’t have a tri-pod, no problem. Web-cams, phones and tablets can be clipped to just about anything to give a view of the keyboard.
I have seen them clipped to lamps, ceiling light fittings and even a clothes airer! Hand holding devices does not work for the person viewing, as the vision is too wobbly.
For the face to face interaction, I use my tablet sitting on top of my keyboard. You could use a tablet or a laptop. A phone may be too small, but if it works for you, then that is okay.
Both my devices have built-in microphones. I did purchase a separate microphone for better sound, but you don’t need to do that.
To ensure you can hear me on the other end, have your speakers enabled on your devices. You can use headphones if you are an adult in a lesson otherwise, coaches, make sure headphones have been unplugged.
You will need to close any curtains or blinds to eliminate sun reflection on the devices.
The video conferencing platform (what we use online to interact) is called Zoom. You can download it here for free: https://zoom.us/
There is no cost to you (in addition to your lesson fee) for using Zoom. It works just like Skype or Facetime, only better.
The Zoom website can seem a little overwhelming with all the information, so I will point you to the most important parts for you: How to join a meeting: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201362193-How-Do-I-Join-A-Meeting-
I suggest you have a practice run with a family member or friend to ensure you see and hear and been seen and heard. So, you will need to set up a meeting with them: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201362413-How-Do-I-Schedule-Meetings-
You will need to test that you video (sight) is working: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/201362313-How-Do-I-Test-My-Video-
And you will need to test your audio (hearing and speaking) is working: https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/115002262083-How-Do-I-Test-Prior-to-Joining-a-Meeting-
After you have tested your video and audio, you are good to go! The practice run will enable you to iron out problems without wasting too much class time.
This may seem like too much trouble to a lot of people but, believe me, it will become more the normal way of teaching in the future. Firstly, there is a lack of teachers in the areas students are wanting lessons and secondly, parents and adult students are becoming more time poor. It eliminates the need to drive to lessons. I hope this has given you enough information but if you have any questions, please contact us.