Individual Instruction Edition

Hello PMAC students and families. I put together this guide as a collection of suggestions to optimize your online music learning experience. If you have any questions, please contact me at  I hope your music lesson experience brings joy to your week!  ~Michelle Shoemaker, Director of Education

Be sure to get set up for your lesson about 5-10 min prior to your lesson time. Have your instrument out, tuned (if necessary), and ready to play. Set up your music stand and have all music, a pencil and a metronome app available.

If you have a choice between devices (phone/tablet/desktop), choose the device with the largest screen.

Your lesson may be recorded, it will depend on the platform and your teacher’s preference. However, for our youth students, having a parent or guardian nearby to take notes is helpful. Most teachers will write notes within the music and also note your child’s lesson assignment. Some students may need assistance with these steps. For students age 10 and younger, in alignment with our Youth Protection Policy, we ask that a parent or guardian be present to provide oversight and assist as needed.

Lighting is very important. Experiment with lamp placement and be mindful about having a sun filled window behind you, as it can create glare.

Be sure your camera position is where you and your teacher have agreed is best. See the diagram below for recommendations for overall positioning.

To improve audio quality:

  • Speak directly toward the device microphone, Play or Sing angled/slightly away from the microphone.
  • Audio quality can be improved by using headphones. At this time we suggest using headphones that do not have a built-in microphone. Keep one ear free from your headphones so you can also hear yourself playing as clearly as possible.

Please be patient if your lesson starts a few minutes after your scheduled lesson time. Depending on the platform used, you may be parked in “the lobby” while the teacher ends with one student and then lets you into your lesson, or you may have to wait for your teacher to initiate the call/meeting. There is always the possibility that your instructor may be having technical issues.

We’re all in this together as we try this way of learning music. We appreciate your flexibility and look forward to when we can return to an in-person educational experience at PMAC. Most of all, have a great time making music for your teacher!