Students

Logistics

Curriculum

I teach mainly drum set, and sometimes general percussion. All students learn fundamentals of ergonomics, technique, reading, and counting. Students will work out of a number of books, but they usually don't need them right away, and the books are relatively inexpensive (less than the cost of a lesson).

Drum set students will apply these skills across multiple styles, including rock, jazz, and latin.

Percussion students will additionally focus on rudiments and scale studies, and apply those skills to etudes and longer works as appropriate.

Methodology

I focus students' studies on what is most practical for them immediately, and branch out into more advanced, conceptual material after the basics are in place. Additionally, students will be expected to utilize and develop their general skills of organization, memorization, and recitation.

Locations

Although I teach most of my students in their homes, I also have access to a location in Eagan at Highway 3 & Cliff Road, where I teach on a limited schedule.

Contact

In general, telephone/texting is the fastest way to reach me. I generally take or return calls between 9AM and 10PM.

Policies

Scheduling

Lessons are booked by the month, paid in advance. Students only pay for weeks they schedule a lesson. Most students take weekly lessons on an ongoing basis, with the expectation of continuous progress.

Lesson Times

The days and times I teach depend on students' availability, so three times a year -- January, June, and September -- I query current students and build a lesson schedule based on location and availability.

Lesson Length

Lessons are nominally 45 minutes, but I often run over as I prefer to generous with my time when I can. Between that and traffic variance, I ask that students and their families budget 75 minutes for each 45 minute in-home lesson. Students ramping up for important milestones, studying multiple areas (mallet percussion & drum set, for instance), or simply wanting/needing more time, can also choose to do longer lessons if necessary.

Cancellations

Lessons cancelled more than 48 hours in advance can generally be rescheduled. In the event the lesson cannot be rescheduled for the same week, a credit will be given toward a future lesson. Lessons cancelled less than 48 hours in advance are not refundable, except in the case of illness or family emergencies. Unexpected practices, games, rehearsals, etc. are not considered emergencies.

Supervision

For students under the age of 18, a parent or other responsible adult should be somewhere in the house during in-home lessons. If I arrive at a lesson and there is no adult on site, the lesson will be considered cancelled with no refund.

Student Expectations

Practice

Students are expected to practice a minimum of 30 minutes a day on average, and be prepared to keep a log/journal of their practice activity. Lessons aren't like a vending machine, where you simply pay the money and get the result you want. They require consistent, ongoing effort during the week as you learn and practice the material in preparation for your next lesson.

Behavior

Students are expected to be awake, attentive, polite, and relatively cheerful during their lessons. We all have good and bad days -- and not every moment of a lesson will be packed with fun and excitement -- but if we keep a positive attitude and the desire to improve in the foreground, we'll maximize the benefit and enjoyment of each lesson.

Materials

Students are expected to have their own instrument and sticks/mallets/brushes, a dependable music stand, a journal/notebook, a 3-ring binder with plastic page inserts, a clean and well-lit practice space, a metronome, and a way to hear that metronome above the drums (sound isolating headphones are best because they also protect the student's hearing and allow us to play along with recordings).

Support

Students are encouraged to contact me between lessons if they have questions about the material for the week, or have questions about anything else music-related.

Parent Expectations

Monitoring

Parents of students should monitor their child's practice time and progress during the week, as appropriate. Doing this early in the week will help avoid procrastination on the part of the student.

Support

Parents of students should be sure to confer with their child on a regular basis to determine whether the student needs materials/supplies, practice schedule reminders, or outside help with an aspect of their assignment (such as printing a lesson sheet).

Health

Parents of students should schedule an annual audiological exam for their child, and be sure that their child is using proper ear protection during practice, in the form of earplugs or protective studio headphones.