Teaching qualifications UK

Goreliscious

Senior Member
Hi, I'm talking about the UK here but the idea probably transends national borders. Are there any qualifications/grades/etc that will give you more credibility if you want to advertise as a drum teacher?

I'm self taught and could easily teach beginners, but I'm imagining the parents thought process and guessing they'd go for someone that advertises as having X, Y and Z qualifications to their name.

Aside from the drum qualifications, would having a police background check to say I'm not a paedo help my cause? If someone's leaving their child with me I'm guessing they'd like to know I don't have a history of fiddleing with them.

Before anyone says it - I wouldn't be putting drum teacher ads online signed "Goreliscious"! I'm aware how that wouldn't help my wallet.
 

Mighty_Joker

Silver Member
As far as I'm aware, at least as far as Trinity Guildhall and UCL are concerned, you need Grade 8 to teach up to Grade 5, and your Associate's diploma to teach up to Grade 8. I'm not sure how many people follow this, but I would suggest that, if you haven't already, take a few lessons of your own and perhaps see where you fall on the grade scale, because you might not be as ready as you think to teach others.

This was something that happened to me. I taught for a while, and then resumed my own lessons. Now that I'm working on my own qualifications, re: Grade 8 and the associate diplomas, and I've learned so much that I honestly don't feel like I was qualified to teach back then. It is a common fallacy that being self-taught can get you to the same level as formal tuition, it can't, and never will.

As for being a "paedo", having a CRB always helps, but you aren't allowed to get one for yourself unless you're technically self-employed, which you should be if you're a drum teacher. May I ask how old you are? If you're young (<25), you might struggle anyway.
 

Goreliscious

Senior Member
Cheers for the info, some points worth considering + I see where you're coming from.

Though:

It is a common fallacy that being self-taught can get you to the same level as formal tuition, it can't, and never will.
Who taught the first formal teacher?
 
M

mediocrefunkybeat

Guest
Associated Board of the Royal Academy of Music grades are the ones that you probably want to look at if you want to be taken seriously as a 'percussionist' - not just a drummer. Having Grade 8 music theory is something you want on your CV because it raises your kudos as a musician and is generally a challenging exam.

For more popular playing, the top grades in the Trinity or Guildhall boards are strictly more relevant and mean you could potentially charge more as well. A good degree in music can't hurt, either.

I have (non-drumming) grades from the Associated Board and in 'formal' circles, those are the grades that are generally regarded as worth having. The 'formal' exams for Trinity and Guildhall are generally regarded as inferior - but I am talking very formal circles here.

A Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) check is very important if you want to work with kids. I have one. It runs at about £70 and the expiration rates vary depending on what you're doing - some last a year, some three years and some for a few months.

If you want to really succeed as a teacher, you need to study methods of education and some psychology. This will help you immeasurably - furthermore, having a wide range of abilities as a player is definitely worth it. It looks much better if you say 'Percussionist' (that teaches drum set) rather than 'Drummer' if you're leaving your details with people. So, work on your playing, work on your psychology and all sorts. Then you'll be good to go.
 

last man to bat

Senior Member
A good start would be to get some formal lessons from a respected teacher, it will give you an idea of how the land lies with regards to your ability and what is expected from a lesson, Mighty Joker is right in what he says. I was self taught and thought I was a good drummer until I had lessons. Also parents will expect you to be able to teach the grades and that will be mainly Trinity Guildhall, the associated board, to my knowledge, does not cover drum kit. There is the Rockschool grades but they do not cover as many styles or are as taxing as trinity Guildhall.

Then get hold of the first 2 Trinity Guildhall books (grades 1 to 4) and make sure you are ok about teaching to those grades. You might find they are an eye opener as far as what is expected from the students. If you are happy with those get the grade 7 and 8 book to get some idea of the grade 8 standard.

Another option is to contact your local authority music services and see if you can get an interview/audition and become an accredited music tutor with them. This will help you immensely, they will have contacts with all the schools in your area and as such will be able to offer you plenty of work. There will probably be a mentoring system in place too which will assess and help with your teaching skills plus training etc. This is a really good way to get involved with many other musicians (mostly classically trained) and the opportunities for work and self improvement become plenty.

But... there is a requirement to be able to teach the dots and the grades.

Good luck
 

Sopranos

Senior Member
I am from the states, but, this is a great topic...

Does anyone know or have any of the grade level materials (at any grade) to share an example of what is being taught at that level? I am curious how it relates.
 
M

mediocrefunkybeat

Guest

Goreliscious

Senior Member
Cheers for all the replies, very helpful for that fact that the points raised have reminded me that I play drums for fun, and TO ME, grades and all the rest of it seems like an expensive way to take the joy out of drumming.

110% agree that lessons would benefit anyone, and I might get some at some point, but grades seem like a beaurocratic hoop I really don't wanna jump through. Drumming to me is like playing sports, I do it to distract me from all the stresses in my life, and I'd hate for drumming to become a big enough part of my life that it becomes one of the stresses!

I'm gunna bow out of the conversation now but blaze away if you're still got points to raise that might help future readers.
 
M

mediocrefunkybeat

Guest
Well, that's just the nature of any job.

If you want to take it seriously, you have to treat it seriously - which includes things like lessons, formal assessment and all the 'boring' things hoops that you need to jump through. I think this is fair advice for anyone who wants to think of drumming (or music) as their career. You need to treat it like a day job - putting the hours of work (practice, transcription, etc) in and adding up the hours.

It's just how it works.
 

Mighty_Joker

Silver Member
Well, that's just the nature of any job.

If you want to take it seriously, you have to treat it seriously - which includes things like lessons, formal assessment and all the 'boring' things hoops that you need to jump through. I think this is fair advice for anyone who wants to think of drumming (or music) as their career. You need to treat it like a day job - putting the hours of work (practice, transcription, etc) in and adding up the hours.

It's just how it works.
Quoted for truth. This is spot on, and is the way any serious drum teacher, or any teacher, should approach it.
 

last man to bat

Senior Member
My brother got a very nearly 100% in his Grade 8 Piano when he was 10. I can say that the video of the Piano I just posted up wouldn't get a terribly high mark.
Wow that's pretty impressive, grade 8 in piano or violin is pretty tough.

And I second Mighty Joker's last post.

It is important to point out that grades aren't everything, but if that is what the student wants that's what a teacher has to deliver. And to be fair, as a teacher you will need some resources and the grades books are perfect source material, even if the student doesn't want to take their grades there is some good stuff in those books that is worth covering with the student.
 

last man to bat

Senior Member
I am from the states, but, this is a great topic...

Does anyone know or have any of the grade level materials (at any grade) to share an example of what is being taught at that level? I am curious how it relates.
as MFB has stated, at each grade there is a rudimental study, (at each grade the rudiments increase, eg. grade 1; singles, doubles, paradiddles, grade 4: flam accents, paradiddlediddles, flamacues, flam paradiddles.... etc) then there is a choice of 1 of 3 pieces to play to a backing track then a pick from another 3 pieces which are solo pieces. There are then supplementary tests in sight reading, improvisation, and a set of unpitched aural tests.

One of last year's grade 8 pieces was written by Weckl, this time I think it is Mark Schulman who has written a piece, although I have yet to get a copy of the new grade 8 syllabus.

this is grade 2 rudimental study
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5oaAFyw-O8&feature=related

this is last year's grade 4 rudimental study
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u9_STG2_Slg&feature=related
 
M

mediocrefunkybeat

Guest
Wow that's pretty impressive, grade 8 in piano or violin is pretty tough.

And I second Mighty Joker's last post.

It is important to point out that grades aren't everything, but if that is what the student wants that's what a teacher has to deliver. And to be fair, as a teacher you will need some resources and the grades books are perfect source material, even if the student doesn't want to take their grades there is some good stuff in those books that is worth covering with the student.
He was a child prodigy. He has two diplomas now actually, in French Horn and Piano - but bizarrely his ability at both made me take up the drums. It was an instrument he couldn't play and wouldn't be able to so easily!
 
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