Today I have a reflection on lesson attendance. When a student signs up to take lessons from me, I make them pay for a month at a time. Four weeks. The time you pay for is yours, whether you are here or not. No cancellations, no rescheduling. (I learned this from my mother.) You don’t have to make any commitment beyond a month, but you do have to pay for that time. This may seem unreasonable or inflexible, but I do it for one reason: if students don’t have the time paid for in advance, they won’t come.
Time and time again I have broken my own rule and agreed to let students schedule lessons on a one-at-a-time basis (I charge more for this, of course). Time and time again these students hardly ever come, and therefore, hardly learn anything. They say “life gets in the way.” I say, if you want to learn to play the banjo, you won’t let life get in the way. If you don’t come to your lessons, you won’t learn. Even if you do not take your banjo out of its case between one lesson and the next (you know who you are…) the half-hour that you are at your lesson will benefit you more than not coming to your lesson at all. You’ll be getting exactly half an hour of practice a week.
If you want to learn to play, however, you’ll make the time to practice. There’s no trick to it, no magic. The more you practice, the better you’ll get. Deep down, you know this. And the first step is coming to your lesson!