Perhaps, they have taught you as much as they can. Or, maybe, their teaching style isn’t conducive to your learning one. It could also be for an entirely different reason.
Regardless, you now need to figure out how to break up with the music teacher. While there isn’t a manual on this subject, you don’t have to make things up as you go along. Instead, follow the guidelines below to manage this difficult task in a graceful and classy way.
1. Tell Them of Your Departure Ahead of Time
It can be tempting to tell the music teacher that you are leaving shortly before you stop going to all the classes. This can certainly prevent things from being awkward. However, you do have to bear in mind that this is their livelihood. Thus, when you leave, they will be short that specific sum.
This is why you should tell the teacher ahead of time – it is a good idea to give them around a month’s notice. Then, your disappearance will not be as abrupt. Rather, they will have the time to find a new student to replace you. Then, both parties can leave the agreement in a better state of mind.
If you don’t feel that you can hold on any longer, consider providing monetary compensation instead. You may want to pay all or some of the fee that you will typically pay. This way, you will not feel too guilty about leaving unexpectedly.
2. Honesty is the Best Policy – Sometimes
Naturally, the music teacher is going to know why you want to leave their tutelage. Now, if it something like that you are moving, don’t have time, or lack the money, then the answer is simple enough. Furthermore, such explanations often don’t encourage any more questions.
What about when the reason is a little more difficult than this? For instance, what if you are leaving because that person is a bad teacher – what should you do then? Well, you aren’t going to want to embarrass him or her by telling them that their teaching skills aren’t up to scratch.
Thus, you may want to make “I” statements instead. Talk about how you are finding certain elements of the teaching difficult. How you feel that another approach may be better and that you want to test out this theory. This approach helps the teacher to save face.
Now, you may be wondering why you should bother with honesty if a white lie could make things less awkward for both parties. Well, if you use an excuse such as a lack of money or time, this could come back to haunt you. For instance, if your current teacher discovers that you have taken up lessons with someone else, they will figure out that you were lying along. So, to a certain extent, honesty can be the best policy.
3. End Things on a Positive Note
Even if the music teacher has been truly atrocious, it doesn’t really help to play the blame game. You will rarely leave such a situation feeling good about your approach. This is because this technique will often lead to anger, frustration, and plenty of hurt feelings. Not to mention, it can be completely avoided.
Whenever possible, always end things on a positive note. Make sure to discuss the good things that may have come out of the lessons rather than the bad things. And if you can’t say anything nice, it is best to avoid saying anything at all. Simply mention that you are leaving and keep things at that.
In many instances, your future music teacher may call your old one as a background check. If they hear that you were a difficult student or that you ended things badly, they may think twice about taking you on. So, it is best to preserve both of your reputations.
4. Thank Them for Their Time and Effort
Remember that all music teachers have expended time and effort in teaching you. This means that they have planned out lessons, often to suit you specifically. They may also have done additional research to determine how to get through to you best.
They may not always be good at their job, but they are trying their best. This counts for something. So, before you leave their tutelage, make it a point to thank them. It is a good idea to be as specific as possible, if you can.
Everyone wants to be appreciated. And, by thanking the music teacher, you may take some of the sting out of you leaving them. Therefore, this is definitely an effort that you should make. This will show real class on your part.
5. Plan What You Are Going to Say
This can be an incredibly tricky undertaking for anyone. After all, there is so much to be mindful of. Furthermore, it can be a rather emotional moment as well. To ensure that you put your best foot forward, you may want to plan the breakup. In particular, prepare what you are going to say.
You could write down an entire speech or just jot down the points that you would like to remember. Then go over these and see if any points can be phrased in a better way. When you plan things out, there is less chance of things ending awkwardly.
Of course, you should think about what the music teacher may say in return or the kind of questions that he or she may ask. Then, there is less of a chance that you will be put on the spot.
So, there you have it – your guide to breaking up with a music teacher. At the end of the day, you have to expect that this may not be a pleasant experience. With these guidelines and a little bit of preparation, though, you can make it better for yourself as well as the music teacher. In this case, it is absolutely worth it to make the effort.