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Music Theory Education
Music theory is like the alphabet of music. It is really REALLY important. However, 30 minute private lessons don’t give a lot of time for direct music theory instruction. What I have found as a teacher is that my students end up struggling to read their music as it gets more difficult when we don’t have enough focus on theory in the context of their private lessons.
In the past I taught 45 minute private lessons, and devoted 15 minutes a week or an entire lesson a month (depending on age) to just theory. That is totally doable (and necessary if you’re wanting to study music professionally), but can hike up the price of private lessons pretty significantly.
I use the Royal Conservatory Music Theory books with my private students because the content is EXCELLENT. However, it can get confusing when you are trying to navigate it alone. I met Ms. April at an online teacher meet up over the summer. We were sharing strategies to help our students be successful in their music skills. She started talking about this theory program that she created for her private students. She no longer needed to charge them extra long lessons to learn theory skills, and she could still help explain the tricky music theory concepts.
My son has just started the Preparatory Theory class, and am looking forward to giving an update on his progress this year.
Each course is designed to be completed over the course of a school year, so while it is an investment, it is significantly less than the cost of longer private lessons each week.
For copyright purposes, all students need to purchase the theory book along with the course (and it helps you have something to use while listening to explanations of lessons.) You can order books directly from the RCM website or can often find the materials on Amazon as well.
Take this comprehensive theory assessment to find out your current theory level.