Mentor Connections

Teaching Guidance

Teaching Guidance: Guidelines and Procedures

Teaching guidance can include the following:

  • A submission without video, for guidance on specific teaching practices, such as online lessons or use of technology
  • A submission with video, for guidance on addressing specific student-focused teaching needs

Teaching Guidance (without video)

Prepare a teaching summary document for your mentor that outlines your questions and concerns. Please include all information you feel will be most helpful for the mentor session. This document can include, but is not limited to a description of:

  • Your current teaching scenario, including the ages and levels of your students
  • Your studio equipment, especially any technology that is relevant to your questions and concerns
  • The teaching practices you would like to explore
  • The skill or understanding you seek to develop
  • A summary of any difficulties you are encountering, as relates to your questions and concerns

Teaching Guidance Video Review

Carefully consider what type of video may be best-suited to demonstrate your concern with your student. A maximum of twenty minutes of video will be reviewed. Types of video submission:

  • A lesson segment from one lesson: ideal for a specific problem that can be demonstrated in one portion of a lesson
  • Several segments from one lesson: ideal for an issue that occurs at multiple times and ways within a lesson
  • A sequence of videos from multiple lessons: ideal for demonstrating learning and processes that require time
  • A complete lesson: ideal for problems that relate to lesson flow, goals, and materials

Step-by-step Procedures

  1. Prepare your materials. Create your teaching summary document. Or, video record one or more lessons with a student. See recording tips.
  2. Submit your information. Upload your document or provide a link to your video.
  3. Respond to your mentor’s email to schedule your conference.
  4. Download and install the Zoom app for your video conference.
  5. Attend your video conference, discuss with your mentor, and take notes via the provided template (sent through email).

Submit for Teaching Guidance (Video Review) 

Mentor Connections Policies

  • Files and documents must be submitted through file-sharing links or direct upload.
  • Videos will be submitted as one or multiple links to any common video-sharing platform, such as YouTube, Vimeo, Drive, Dropbox, Apple iCloud.
  • A maximum of twenty minutes of video will be reviewed. If there are specific segments to review, please indicate specific time codes. Otherwise, the mentor will view the first twenty minutes.
  • Videos and files submitted for discussion are not retained and will not be used for any other purpose.
  • The video conference will be scheduled within 10 business days, not including holidays, of submission.
  • Video conferencing can be rescheduled only with at least 24-hours notice of cancellation; the rescheduled meeting must occur within 5 business days of the original meeting. Meetings can only be rescheduled once.
  • In case of technology failure, a meeting will be rescheduled within 5 business days of the original meeting.
  • Refunds will not be given for missed video conferencing meetings. Refunds will only be given if the Frances Clark Center is unable to provide the mentorship service.
  • Video conferencing will occur via the Zoom web conferencing application. A free Zoom account is required.
  • All Zoom meetings are recorded by the Frances Clark Center for the purposes of quality assurance and internal review. All discussions will remain confidential.
  • Mentors are determined by the Frances Clark Center and assigned by the Mentor Connections program to best address each submission.

Tips for recording your piano lesson:

  • If using a tablet or phone, be certain to record in landscape view. Please do not record with a mirror or selfie camera.
  • For best results, use of a tripod is recommended. Consider a quick repositioning of the camera if you are using floor space that is not in view. Or, consider asking a helper to run the video device and reposition the camera as needed.
  • Find the widest angle possible, considering the piano and any desk or floor space you plan to use. Often, placing the camera at shoulder height (or higher), angled downward, will help capture a wider view. This may help if the room is small.
  • If the room is large, make sure the camera is close enough so that the microphone will capture all dialogue.
  • Angle the camera to include both the hands and keyboard, and the faces of the teacher and student. Avoid an angle that results in the teacher blocking the student or that results in the teacher’s face being out of view.
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