Welcome, welcome, welcome back to From The Top, my lovelies! Today we are back with another “Teacher Tips” post for all of the wonderful dance teachers out there and this time we will be discussing a few tips for teaching private dance classes! Private classes are some of my favorite classes to teach (with master classes coming in at a close second). The reason why private classes rank so high on my list of favorites is because I love watching my students experience the growth that private classes provide! However, when I first began teaching privates, I immediately took notice of how different they are from teaching group classes. But of course, the more we experience in our dance journey, the more we learn and today I would love to pass on some tips to all of the dance teachers in the From The Top Family, who may be teaching private classes for the first time. So, without further ado, let’s do it!
Teacher Tip #1
Recommended: Hold A Meeting w/ Your Prospective Student Before Classes Begin
Tip #1 is one that I personally implement when taking on new private class students. The main purpose of taking private classes for the student is usually to be able to focus more on the areas of their training that they wish to better improve or maybe even begin their dance training for the first time. As teachers, it’s our job to provide the areas of guidance where it is requested. In order to do that effectively , I highly recommend having a short, yet in depth, meeting with your student and/or with the student’s parent/guardian who is inquiring about taking privates from you. This is a great starting point to the booking process! During these meetings, the questions that I personally ask are things such as, “What sparked your interest in private classes?” “What genres of dance would you like to focus on?” and “What do you hope to achieve by the end of this course”. This gives you wonderful insight on how to move forward with this student and how to effectively conduct the private class course to meet their needs.
Teacher Tip #2
Curate A Class Plan That Will Best Suit Your Student
Now that you’ve had a small meeting with your client, you can now move forward with creating an effective class plan! Since private classes are specifically meant to cater to one individual, the class plan that you will be curating should be totally centered around meeting the needs of your client. For example, if your client wants to work on their ability to pick up choreography at a fast pace, create any exercises that you see fit that will most benefit them in this area. To help them with this, you could strongly implement weekly class combos, starting by teaching them at a slow and steady pace, and as classes progress, quicken the teaching speed. If they are wanting to work on strength and flexibility, curate a class plan that mainly focuses on strength and conditioning to help them meet their goal. Again, these are all just examples, but this is just a small bit of insight on how to accurately meet your student’s needs. It’s all about helping them grow into the best dancer that they can be!
Teacher Tip #3
Be Sure To Create A Comfortable Class Atmosphere
As always, as teachers we are the leader of each class hour, which means that it is always up to us to establish the best atmosphere that we can possibly create. I’ve heard many dancers admit that one of the reasons that they opt to take private classes is due to a lack of confidence to learn in a group setting, which is totally understandable! As teachers however, that puts the ball in our court. When holding a private class, I truly believe that it is advantageous for everyone involved to create a warm and comfortable atmosphere, setting the right tone. By making your private classes feel like a “no judgement zone”, you will gain the most participation from your student, all while boosting their confidence as dancers and helping them open up more.It also makes that class fun for you as well!
Teacher Tip #4
Set A Pace That Is Both Effective & Time Conscious
And our fourth and final tip is to the set the perfect pace for each private class that is both beneficial and time conscious. Just like any other dance class, getting the most out of your time slot is extremely important. However, by setting a steady pace for each private class, it is beneficial for both the student in terms of the amount they can accomplish, and the teacher in terms of diminishing the pressure of time. And of course, always be sure to be conscious of staying within your time slot in a punctual manner. If you would like more in depth tips on how to get the most out of your teaching time slot, check out another one of our Teacher Tips blog posts, “Teacher Tips: How To Get The Most Out Of Your One Hour Class Time” by visiting the link below!
And that is it for today’s blog post! We hope you enjoyed this installment of Teacher Tips! We wish you the best of luck as you take on this new element of your teaching career. As usual, we’re looking forward to writing another teacher tips entry very, very soon! And be sure to check back next week as we discuss what to expect and how to prepare for taking private classes for the first time! Until then, we wish you a wonderful weekend and always remember…