3 Simple Steps to Find a Good Violin Teacher

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Rose Park   11/15/21   • 4 min read

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There are three steps you should keep in mind when finding a good violin teacher for yourself or your child.

In this post, I will explain why you should actively look for good violin teachers. Good violin teachers are different from those who claim they know how to play violin or have years of teaching experience or majored in guitar or singing but know how to play violin.

Good, professional violin teachers are exceptionally different.

If you want to really find the best violin teacher for you (or who your child will be studying with), this is the right place for you. Let’s learn the Three Steps.

Good violin teachers - Lesson With You - Rose Park

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Degree

Types of Degree

Most professional, qualified and talented violin teachers receive academic and performance focused training from the top music universities and conservatories.

The curriculums offered at the top music schools are intense. While taking various academic courses, violin students practice countless hours to prepare for weekly hour-long lessons, studio classes, orchestra rehearsals, performances and competitions. Typically, violin students spend at least 4 or 5 hours every day practicing various pieces to become better violinists (not including time spent for coursework). They also spend countless hours on rehearsals for chamber groups. This is how the average students majoring in violin performance spend most of the time mastering violin, and this cannot be replicated by someone who majored in a different instrument or field.

I would strongly encourage you to do some research on the potential violin teacher’s degrees. Did they major in violin? The closer the degree is related to violin performance, the higher the quality of your violin lessons.

Levels of Degree

Ideally, a good violin teacher would have at least a Bachelor’s degree in violin performance. It’s a plus when the teacher has a minor in pedagogy, music education, music theory, or music history, because they’ll be able to give better rounded lessons as a result. Additionally, a teacher with a Master’s degree or Doctorate in violin performance indicates the teacher is highly professional in both performing and teaching violin.

Another thing to look at is whether the teacher holds a degree in music education with a focus in violin performance. Note that teachers with music education degrees study general music education rather than focusing on the performance side of violin music. 

I would highly recommend them if you want to learn general music theory, or if the child is particularly young, or if you are just looking for basic skills like reading music. As you get more advanced, you’ll likely want to switch to a teacher who majored in violin performance.

Meet Our Pro Instructor

Meet Kierra, a professional violin teacher specializing in classical violin

Levels of Music School

Here is a recent informal list of rankings for the best music schools for violin in the US:

https://musicschoolcentral.com/top-10-colleges-for-piano-performance/ 

Note the rankings listed in sites are different from how professional violin instructors rank the schools because each music program is unique by its size, history, faculty and focus areas or department.

For instance, Berkeley School of Music has one of the best Jazz departments because of its history and successful alumni and they often rank high in lists. However, it’s likely that New England Conservatory of Music has a bigger and better classical violin department resulting in a higher number of talented classical violinists.

Musical Background

Competitions, Performance Experience

The performance level can be assessed by the number of competitions and awards you can find in the resume or their professional websites. There are countless numbers of violin competitions in the world and it’s hard to tell which competitions are competitive and harder to win than the others.

In any case, a professional violin teacher should at least put several competitions, awards and performance experiences (recitals, tours, masterclasses and concerto performances, etc.) because it shows they had spent considerable time and effort in practicing and mastering violin.

Teaching Experience

Many violin teachers list a number of teaching years in their resume. Teaching experience matters although I would stress that a decent degree should come first. Note there are many violin teachers with lesser musical backgrounds who claim to have 5 or 10 years experience of teaching. 

There is nothing wrong about it but if you want to find a good violin instructor with a professional background, research the teachers in this order: school name, type or level of the degree, performance experience, teaching experience.

Check Performance Recordings

While watching the recording, ask these questions to yourself:

– What’s the first impression of the appearance?
– How does a teacher move the bows? 
Do you like the music the teacher plays?

Ideally, a good violin instructor would have many recordings of their recital, competition and collaborative performance. Having many available recordings means they are confident in playing violin and have a considerable amount of repertoire.

Good violin teacher - Lesson With You - Rose Park

Teacher Quality

Background Check

It’s not a must-do but it’s recommended if the teacher has done and passed the background check. Some music lesson websites such as Lesson With You offer live professional violin teachers who are background checked. It feels extra safer for both child and parents when the teacher is fully background checked.

Good Communication

A good violin instructor communicates with the parents regularly on the student’s learning progress. It’s very important that parents know how their child does in the lesson so that they can share ideas about violin with the child. If the feedback from the teacher is not great, parents should encourage and motivate their child to prepare better for the lessons in the future.

How much do violin lessons cost?

Find out violin lesson price ranges and how to get the best prices.

Looking for Professional Violin Instructors?

Lesson With You offers 1-on-1 live online violin lessons with highly professional violin instructors who earned at least Bachelor’s degrees from the top music schools in the world including Cleveland Conservatory of Music and Texas Christian University.

The first trial lesson is free! No Contract Ever.

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