As our educational system gradually shifts more focus back to the arts and humanities, transforming STEM education into STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math), teachers in the creative fields will become more important than they have been in some time. Music, in particular, is an important field even for those intending to enter the sciences, as studies show that students who excel in music also have stronger math skills.
Music teachers can be found just about everywhere — not just in schools, but in private homes, guitar stores and in their own practices. Examine what a music teacher does, why they’re so important, and how you can gain the qualifications and certifications needed to enter this career.
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What Does a Music Teacher Do?
Music teachers instruct students not just how to play an instrument, but in musical concepts, theory and history. They can instruct everything from vocal techniques to fingering and proper technique for playing physical instruments. They are aware of the science behind music, how and why notes go together, and can teach students how to understand the language of music, including how to interpret different forms of musical notation and how to construct songs of their own.
Being a music teacher requires a strong fundamental knowledge of the workings and theory behind music, as well as proficiency in one or more instruments. Music teachers often have spent most of their lives enmeshed in a love of music and the way it affects people, and have a passion and drive to impart this passion to others.
Where Does a Music Teacher Work?
When people hear the term “teacher,” they usually think of public schools, be it an elementary school, a middle or high school, or even a college, and it’s true that all of these institutes have music teachers where you can make a great living. However, many music instructors work giving private lessons as well, either to supplement their income or as a primary job. It’s possible for someone to work as a music teacher without a teaching certification; however, your prospects for a solid career with excellent benefits increase with a teacher’s license in your state.
What Skills Does a Music Teacher Need?
Music teachers, first of all, need to have a mastery of at least one instrument, be it voice, guitar, piano or any other instrument. Many music teachers seek proficiency or mastery in a variety of instruments so that they can better educate their students. As a music teacher, you will need outstanding communications skills, excellent organizational skills, attention to detail, critical thinking and analytical skills, and a knowledge of music history and theory, among other skills.
How Do I Become a Music Teacher?
To teach music privately, you need only have the skills to impart your knowledge to others, though if you intend to work with children, you should obtain clearances to do so, to protect yourself. Becoming a licensed teacher will increase your career prospects, and this requires education in the form of a bachelor’s or master’s degree in teaching, a student teaching experience internship, clearances, and certification exams according to your state’s individual guidelines.
If you are interested in becoming a music teacher, check out your state’s requirements elsewhere on our website today!