How I Became a Piano Teaching Entrepreneur | 12/28/15

In this space, I want to share the stories of inspiring teen entrepreneurs. I thought it would be a good idea to share a little of my ...

In this space, I want to share the stories of inspiring teen entrepreneurs. I thought it would be a good idea to share a little of my story, since this is my blog, after all. ;) So anyway, here's how I started a piano teaching business and how you can, too! Unless you don't like piano. or don't know how to play piano. or don't have a piano. Then I suppose you are out of luck.
I started taking piano when I was six. I practiced a ton, because honestly, my teacher was a little scary. Over the next four years, I learned in more of a classical, traditional way, then also was taught about improvisation and song writing by various teachers. This was the first step for me- becoming good at piano. (Hopefully this is obvious for someone wanting to teach piano. )

Piano teaching started slowly for me- I taught my brother when I was 10, which was a failure of epic proportions. (Side note- I started re-teaching my brother a few years ago, he now plays beautifully. But back to the story.) I taught another little girl when her parents asked me to, and she played well but soon quit. This was the first main lesson I learned: Failure is inevitable. 

When I was 12, I started teaching a few kids, and added a few more kids in the next couple of years. I relied pretty much solely on word of mouth promotion- mainly my mom. She's friends with basically everyone on the universe. It wasn't too difficult to juggle schedules, because when you're younger, there aren't as many things on your plate. At least that was my situation. 

I used and am still using the Faber and Faber Method, but usually start students out with Alfred Palmer's Level 1A. As far as practicing, each student is different, but having work sheets like these ones certainly helps them practice more. I try to do at least one recital a year for the students to have something to work towards. Also challenges (with prizes of course) like "Who can practice the most this month" seems to really motivate some students. 

Last year, because of my more hectic high school schedule, I decided to have all my piano students (9 at the time) come on one day. Boom boom boom. Yep, bad idea. Teaching is exhausting, and teaching almost 5 hours in a row in addition to school and extracurriculars was just awful. That's definitely something I don't recommend. :) This year I was able to spread out the lessons, so that's awesome. 

As far as payments, I've found that the best way is simple to send out email reminders for each month. Easy and painless. People may try to take advantage of you- especially if you're a teen- so be firm in your payment deadlines. I learned this the hard way. 

copyright the teentrepreneurThe beauty of piano teaching for me is 1) I get to share what I'm good at with others 2) I get money (obviously, I can't leave that one out. I'm all about being real, here.) 3) I learn so much!

I've learned that people may try to take advantage of me- be strong and hustle hard.

I've learned that making even a small amount of money requires work. 

I've learned that it doesn't take an orchestra at Carnegie hall to make beautiful music, it just takes nine piano students playing the christmas recital songs they've labored over for weeks, if not months. It's a beautiful thing. 

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  1. I loved this post-- it's so informative! And yes, kid/teen entrepreneurs often do get taken advantage of. To all my neighbors: don't bargain with this door to door former cherry seller, please.

    1. Lol. Your comments crack me up!! Thanks for reading, former cherry seller. :)