Music Lessons FAQ

What are some tips to help my child practice at home?

Practicing:

  • Check the individualized Google Doc to see what your child is working on in lessons.
  • Decide exactly what you are working on each day. Don’t start at the beginning of the piece each time, start at a new place every day. Repeat a small section until it is perfect and then play it at least three times perfectly in a row.
  • Check your fingering and use the same fingering every time. If you keep changing the fingering, your mind becomes confused and you’ll never get a difficult passage to sound easy and beautiful.
  • Always establish the beat before you start to play and keep feeling the beat all the time. Counting out loud can help you keep this feeling. The goal of the practicing is to make the whole piece flow along with no little stumbles – feel the music.
  • Listen, listen, listen, to the sound you are making. You are communicating a certain mood or character with each piece that you play.  Remember, you are telling a story and it must be so interesting and exciting that everyone loves to listen.

How long should you practice?

  • Two or three 10-minute sessions five times a week.
  • Practicing should become a part of your day just like brushing your teeth. You need to get into the habit so that your day doesn’t feel complete unless you have practiced your instrument.
  • Choose your practice time carefully and stick with the same time each day as much as possible.

Beginners: 10 to 15 minutes – 5 days a week

Grades 1-3: 15 to 20 minutes – 5 days a week

Grades 4-6: 20 to 25 minutes – 5 days a week

Grades 7-8: 30 to 40 minutes – 5 days a week

Grade 9 and up: 45 to 60 minutes  – 6 days a week

Should I purchase or rent an instrument for my child to practice on?

Yes.

Please email Reinette (reinette@progressiveacademy.ca) to inquire about purchase options for keyboards, ukuleles, and drum sticks through Progressive Academy. She can also direct you to other instrument rental or purchase options.

What are the performance opportunities?

  • The Junior Kindergarten student showcase is held at the end of their lesson package usually in late May or early June.
  • The year-end recital for Kindergarten to High School will be in June. 
  • Parents will be informed and invited to each of these performances.

How often should I expect to receive communication from my child’s instructor?

Each music teacher will send an introductory letter at the beginning of the year to introduce themselves and go over specific policies that apply to their teaching, and expected ways to communicate. Each music teacher will also create an individualized Google Doc for your student. This Google Doc will be updated each lesson. This is also where their lesson activity will be uploaded if the student can’t attend their lessons in person or online. If there are any lesson specific questions, you may email your child’s music teacher directly.

What is the Make-Up Lesson Policy?

  • Lessons missed due to school activity conflicts will be made up by scheduling another lesson in the week (either by switching with another student, or on their lunch break).
  • Lessons missed due to school conflicts may also be made up through adding extra time to a regular lesson.
  • If a student needs to stay at home due to any illness, they may access their lesson virtually. You MUST contact their music teacher in the morning BEFORE THEIR LESSON to access this option. If the student is too ill to attend a virtual lesson, the music teacher will spend their time slot working on a lesson activity to upload to their Google Doc. There will be no make-up lessons offered for lessons missed due to sickness. You must either access the virtual option, or access the lesson plan left for the student. 
  • If a student misses a lesson by choice (like taking a holiday during regular school hours), the music teacher will spend that student’s time slot working on a lesson activity to upload to their Google Doc.
  • When you sign up for Private Music Lessons, you are securing a specific time slot in an instructor’s schedule. The music teacher is working for you during that time slot whether the student is able to make their lesson in-person or not.
  • Any other make-up lesson days are scheduled at the instructor’s discretion. Exceptions will only be made if the child has missed more than 3 consecutive lessons due to a medical emergency backed up by a doctor note.

What happens if the instructor misses a day of lessons?

  • In the unlikely event that an instructor misses more than 3 weeks of regular lessons, the remaining lessons will be refunded. They will otherwise schedule a make-up lesson day during the allotted flex weeks in June for any days that are missed.

How many lessons are in a package?

  • Every student has access to the same number of lessons (34) no matter what day they are scheduled on. The monthly cost is a lump sum spread across nine months. 
  • This means students scheduled on Mondays, Thursdays, or Fridays will likely need to go to the end of June to finish their package, and students scheduled on Tuesdays and Wednesdays will finish their package at the end of May or beginning of June. This allows there to be flexible days in June for instructors to schedule make-up lessons at their discretion. 

Why have a monthly cost if lessons are a package?

  • The reason we do a monthly cost is to help track the many moving parts that come with running a separate program. 
  • For now, this is the best way we can manage a large group of students that are also following a school schedule.

Can I put my lessons on hold?

  • No.
  • When you sign up, you are securing a time slot in an instructor’s schedule. You must go through our cancellation policy if you wish to quit.

What is the Cancellation Policy?

  • Progressive Academy reserves the right to cancel any student’s lesson on recommendation of their instructor with a seven-day notice. The student’s remaining lessons will not be charged to the account.
  • Parents may cancel lessons for their child. They must give a 30-day notice to stop the payments starting the day Reinette is informed via an email to reinette@progressiveacademy.ca. Students may continue lessons during this 30-day notice, or they may forfeit the lessons at the choice of the parent. This is in addition to the $75 cancellation fee.
  • There are no exceptions to the cancellation policy.

What is the Refund Policy?

  • Under no circumstances are there refunds offered for lessons that have already been taught.
  • There are no refunds offered for lessons missed due to sickness or holidays taken during regular school hours. There are no make-up lessons offered for these reasons as the instructor is still working for you during this time to upload a lesson activity to the student’s Google Doc.
  • There are only refunds offered if the child has missed more than 3 consecutive lessons due to medical emergency backed up by a doctor note.

What payment options are available?

  • Payments are processed monthly. The monthly payments will begin in September, and end in May.
  • Built into the monthly payments is the expectation that students are signing up for the full year. The days off from regular school scheduling is taken into account and balanced across students in lessons from Monday to Friday. This means that students scheduled on Tuesdays and Wednesdays will likely finish earlier in the year. This leaves a few extra weeks to use as flexible weeks for scheduling make-up lessons as needed on these days.
  • Every student enrolled in the lesson program will have access to the same number of lessons, regardless of what day they are scheduled on.

Fees can be paid by cheque, credit card, or pre-authorized debit.