1. Private lesson teachers model a professional sound on their instrument. How do babies learn to talk? By listening to people talk. How do instrumentalists learn to play with a characteristic sound? By hearing a characteristic sound.
2. Students are able to perform by themselves weekly and get concentrated feedback. In band it is rare for students to perform by themselves and if they do, feedback us usually limited to 10-15 seconds. Performing weekly for a teacher helps them become a more confident and independent player. They also have more time to give feedback, try again and continue to work on a problem until it improves because it is an individual setting.
3. Students are able to focus on supplemental exercises written specifically for their instrument. These fundamentals are crucial for later development and more advanced playing ability.
4. Method books written just for their instrument are far superior to band music for developing well-rounded players. Method books, because of their methodical nature, do a much more complete job of covering full range, key signatures, rhythms, duets, alternate fingerings and styles than the curriculum in band class allows.
5. Region/district band auditions can be approached on an individual level. Teachers can meet a child where they are to begin the region band music and help them develop an individual game plan to prepare them for the audition. This helps students learn how to set goals - long term and weekly goals.
6. Instructors give students a chance to play a unique solo that they love at solo contest. Lesson teachers, experts on solos for their instruments, are able to offer students a number of solos that are ideal for their development level. They can also choose solos that work on goals for that student such as focusing on objectives such as extending range, improving articulation, or extreme key signatures. Giving students more options means they are more likely to find a solo that personality and that they enjoy playing.
7. Private lesson teachers provide a role model for students that can be a strong motivation for students to continue in band and excel on an individual level. While students move through different classes, grade levels and schools, it is possible they would have the same lesson teacher for 7 or more years. Lesson teachers often have a long term plan for each student’s development. Private teachers can guide a student all the way from the first sounds in beginner band through a professional level solo as a senior in high school and they know how to get them from one point to the next.
other advocacy and resources can be found here:
*Private lessons can be scheduled during your student's band class or study hall. There is financial assistance available through the Niles West music parents organization.
*Students may qualify for free lessons if they choose to switch to an instrument of need for the band program.
Scott Simon: Percussion
Nora Shaffer: Woodwinds
Scott Anderson: Brass
Niles West Private Instructors
Nancy Williams: firstname.lastname@example.org Flute
Suzanne Hannau: email@example.com Flute
Keith Bjorklund: firstname.lastname@example.org Oboe
Nora Shaffer: email@example.com Clarinet
Bryan Polacek: firstname.lastname@example.org Saxophone
Scott Anderson: email@example.com Trumpet/Jazz Improvisation
Mark Olen: firstname.lastname@example.org Trumpet
Lisa Taylor: email@example.com Horn
Serena Voltz: firstname.lastname@example.org Tuba/Euphonium
Scott Simon: email@example.com Percussion/Drum set