FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
1. What is the Little School of Music Levels Program?
Little School of Music offers a sequential music program divided into levels to help monitor progress and celebrate student achievements. Participating in a balanced, well rounded music education program gives students the opportunity to receive the benefits of studying music.
Musicianship skills for all instruments and voice includes:
- Instrument playing techniques
- Healthy voice techniques and placement
- Rhythm training
- Reading music
- Music theory (terms and symbols)
- Ear training (aural skills)
- Music appreciation and history
- Performance techniques
- Performance opportunities
Most importantly, our program teaches leadership skills, character development, discipline, commitment, problem solving skills, creative and critical thinking, and boosts self-confidence.
2. Why is a Levels Program important?
Many parents at the school do not have a musical background and often ask what level their child is and how they are progressing. Because there are so many different disciplines, book series, ages, and experience levels, answering this question can be inconsistent from one student to the next. We’ve taken all of these factors and combined them to create an overarching school-wide levels program that is easy for parents, students, and teachers to follow.
3. What if I just want to learn to play some songs?
You are welcome to participate in as much of the program offerings as you’d like. However, we do feel all elements of the program are important to get the full benefit.
4. What are the levels of the overall program?
College Prep/Teacher Apprenticeship
Apprentice Levels I-II
Beginning students ages 7+ are enrolled in the Apprentice Program. Students take 30-min weekly lessons, may have recorded lessons when absent, participate in the Musical Ladder System, the Music Money program, Leadership and Character Development Program, and school hosted recitals. (Upgrade to 45-min weekly lessons for an additional fee.)
Intermediate Levels I – IV
Once students have successfully met the Apprentice Level requirements, they will be promoted to the Intermediate Program. Students take 45-min weekly lessons, may have recorded lessons when absent, participate in the Musical Ladder System, the Music Money program, Leadership and Character Development Program, and school hosted recitals. In addition, Intermediate Level students may also participate in community performances, Royal Conservatory of Music Certificate Program Levels Prep-4, monthly studio class, and may join a band/ensemble with your teacher’s recommendation. (RCM Exams and Band/Ensemble participation have an additional fee. Upgrade to 45-min weekly lessons for an additional fee.)
Advanced Levels I – IV
Once students have successfully met the Intermediate Level requirements, they will be promoted to the Advanced Program. Students take 60-min weekly lessons, may have recorded lessons when absent, participate in the Musical Ladder System, Leadership and Character Development Program, school hosted recitals, community performances, Royal Conservatory of Music Certificate Program Levels 5-8, monthly studio class, and join a band/ensemble. In addition, Advanced Level students may also attend monthly music theory classes, special guest events and masterclasses, and participate in Advanced Honors Studio Recitals. Individual Private Teachers may also recommend participation in non-school hosted Music Festivals, Competitions, Summer Programs, and other performance opportunities. Teachers will help prepare students for auditions, and participate in mock auditions with the LSM faculty. (RCM Exams and Band/Ensemble participation have an additional fee.)
College Prep Level
Once students have successfully met the Advanced Level requirements, they will be promoted to the College Prep Level. Students take 60-min weekly lessons, may have recorded lessons when absent, participate in the Musical Ladder System, Leadership and Character Development Program, school hosted recitals, community performances, Royal Conservatory of Music Certificate Program Levels 9-10, monthly studio class, and join a band/ensemble. College Prep Level students may also attend monthly music theory classes, special guest events and masterclasses, and participate in Advanced Honors Studio Recitals. Individual Private Teachers may also recommend participation in non-school hosted Music Festivals, Competitions, Summer Programs, and other performance opportunities. Teachers will help prepare students for auditions, and participate in mock auditions with the LSM faculty. In addition, students will prepare for upcoming college auditions and begin early Teacher Apprentice pedagogy training. (RCM Exams, Band/Ensemble, and Teacher Apprenticeship program participation have an additional fee.)
5. How does the program work?
Students are placed in the appropriate level by their teacher based on their current ability. As students progress and meet the requirements set for each level, they are promoted by their teacher to the next level and awarded a ribbon for their achievement!
6. When will my child be ready to advance to the next level?
This all depends on the student and how much they are able to practice at home, but on average about 1 year or 1-2 years for upper levels. Average times have been set for each level based on consistent practice and lesson attendance. Students who practice less than the recommended time from their teacher may need to be in a level longer, while those exceeding expectations may advance more quickly. There are performance requirements to advance as well.
7. What if my child is not ready to progress to the next level?
There is no time limit or rush to get to the next level. Enjoy the process and enjoy learning. Students can remain at a level for as long as they need, however practicing consistently at home will help them progress and feel a sense of accomplishment.
8. How do I enroll?
At the conclusion of the Intro Program, you’ll meet with the front desk staff for an enrollment conference to confirm the recommended program by the teacher, confirm the weekly lesson/class time, and collect the enrollment fees.
9. How long do I have to be enrolled?
Learning music is like learning a language plus learning how to play a musical instrument. It requires time, practice, patience, consistency, discipline, physical coordination, planning, critical thinking, problem solving, creative expression, and improvisation, among many other skills. These are some of the reasons so many students excel in other areas of their lives as they progress in their music lessons.
Enrollment at Little School of Music is based on an annual term. Making the commitment to study music for longer periods gives students the opportunity and time to gain more of the unparalleled benefits and develop the skills necessary to make consistent progress and achieve their goals along the way.
10. How much does the program cost?
Tuition is based on an annual rate according to the music program you are enrolled in. Specific rates are provided at the enrollment conference. A non-refundable Tuition Down Payment on the annual tuition total is collected every 12 months from the original enrollment date. Materials are not included in the tuition.
11. What is the Tuition Down Payment and do I have to pay it every year?
The tuition is based on an annual rate for the music program you are enrolled in. The Tuition Down Payment is made at the beginning of the 12-month program as part of that annual total. This sets the monthly installment payment rate for the remainder of the 12-month program. The Tuition Down Payment is collected at the start of every 12-month period. This payment cycle repeats annually.
12. How does billing work?
Tuition rates are based on the program the student is enrolled in. Tuition installment payments are billed monthly according to the Little School of Music Calendar. A Non-Refundable Tuition Downpayment is due at the start of each 12-month enrollment period. Specific rates will be discussed at the enrollment conference based on the teacher’s recommendation at the conclusion of the Intro Program.
Payment types accepted: Cash, Check, Venmo (@littleschoolofmusic), Credit Card
If you are interested in auto-pay, you can schedule a check payment to be automatically sent from your bank, or we can charge a card on file each month.
13. What are the enrollment fees?
- Non-Refundable Tuition Downpayment (varies by level)
- First Tuition Installment Payment (prorated if applicable)
The Enrollment Fees Payment must be received at least 24 hours in advance of the first lesson (or at the time of booking if less than 24 hours).
14. What if I’m a Homeschool Student?
Homeschool students must enroll at Little School of Music and have a PO submitted before lessons can begin. We suggest submitting your PO the month prior to starting and for 3-4 months at a time when possible. Homeschool families will also want to consider paying for months out of pocket that are not covered by their school so lessons can continue without interruption. Please ask the LSM front desk for a breakdown of fees for your program.
15. What happens if a student is absent?
There are no makeups, credits, or refunds for missed/skipped lessons, classes, and rehearsals. If a student is absent for any reason, (including a sudden emergency or same-day illness), the teacher will prepare a video recorded lesson or written lesson (according to your selection above) for the student during the scheduled lesson time.
If no prior notice was given and the student has not arrived by 10 minutes past the start time, the teacher will use the remaining lesson time to provide a video recorded lesson or a written lesson, which ever is more appropriate for the lesson that day. Teachers are using the original scheduled lesson time to prepare and send the lesson that would have been taught that day, so additional instructional time will not need to be scheduled. Notifying the LSM front desk staff in advance will allow more time to update the schedule so teachers have time to plan.
Group Class students will skip their class and attend the following week. You may email your teacher directly to receive the weekly class assignment.
16. What happens if I need to reschedule my lesson?
Lesson times are only rescheduled if it’s a permanent change. In this case, parents need to contact the LSM front desk directly to find a new day and time. Please keep in mind teacher availability is limited and in some cases, you may have to change teachers depending on the current availability.
17. What do we do if we are going to be on an extended break?
Extended Breaks are for planned absences that are from 4 to 8 consecutive weeks, excluding LSM School breaks and Holidays. Tuition will not be collected during this time. Future lesson days and times will no longer be reserved once the extended break begins. Students will need to reschedule their lesson day and time once they return. In some cases, they may need to continue with a different teacher as well depending on the current availability. Students who continue on break past 8 weeks will need to re-enroll in the school. To give notice of the extended break, parents must complete the Little School of Music Extended Break online form the month prior to the start of the absence. We appreciate as much advanced notice as possible.
18. What happens if we need to conclude our lessons?
If, for any reason, a student needs to conclude their lessons beyond 2 months, a minimum of 1 full month (or 4 lesson weeks), prior notice must be given by completing the Little School of Music Concluding Lessons Form. The official notification will be time-stamped according to the submission date and time of the form submission, and not by any other means of communication. The Final Tuition payment will be collected for the last month according to the billing cycle. (See the calendar for specific dates.)
19. Will I get to keep my teacher if I take a break?
Scheduling availability is very limited so we can not guarantee the day, time, or teacher will still be available when you return from a break.
20. When does the program begin?
The Little School of Music Levels Program launched in January 2022. Current LSM students have been grandfathered into the new Music Program. New students begin their music program once enrollment is complete.
21. What if we are away for the summer?
We encourage students to continue their lessons year round to provide more consistency and accelerate learning and musical potential. Our new schedule allows for 3 weeks of summer break time which is sufficient for most families.
22. Can I change instruments?
Absolutely. Any time. Just as athletes may be drawn to a particular sport, so are musicians to an instrument/voice. If at anytime you want to try another instrument, or switch all together, you may do so. Just keep in mind the program you are enrolled in may change. These are your lessons and we want you to get the most joy out of them!
23. What if I want to try another instrument or teacher?
At Little School of Music, we do our best to make sure students are getting the most from their music lessons. Sometimes this means students change instruments or teachers. If at any point you, or your teacher, feels the match is no longer the best fit, you may change to a new instrument or teacher. Making these adjustments is a normal part of your child’s education and growing process.
Students may change teachers at any time. Sometimes students need a change to help keep them moving forward, and that is OK! Often parents and teachers are afraid of hurting a teacher’s feelings by changing, but you won’t! Our outstanding faculty work together and sometimes teachers recommend other teachers for students too!
24. What happens if I change my mind?
Think back to the reasons you decided to enroll to begin with. Learning music is a process and won’t happen over night so give yourself time to accomplish your goals. Consult with your teacher or the LSM staff about any concerns you have about your lessons.
25. Do I need to have my own instrument?
Having your own instrument, materials, and books in lessons during lessons and for practice at home is required and are not covered by tuition. Little School of Music has acoustic and digital pianos in each room, so you do not need to bring a keyboard to the lesson. Please talk with your teacher about what materials you will need.
26. What is the Leadership Program and why is it important?
The Leadership Program introduces monthly principles to enhance the life lessons, leadership skills, and character development experienced in music education. This is at the core of our program as we use music and learning to play an instrument as the tool. Participation is an important part of the future success of our students and teachers alike.
27. What kind of commitment is the Leadership Program?
The Leadership Program is built into the program, so no extra time is required by students. We do encourage students to extend what they learn to other parts of their life including at school, at home, and especially among their peers.
28. What do we have to do to participate in the Leadership Program?
Each month a short introductory video on the monthly principle will be emailed to parents for students to watch at home. Parents may want to watch the video too! Teachers will engage students with a 2-3 minute class chat and other activities so the student can continue exploring on their own.
29. What is the Musical Ladder System?
The Musical Ladder System is a great way to help students set goals, promote practicing, and
be recognized for their efforts!
Every 3 months, 6 months, or 12 months, (depending on the level) teachers give students an “Achievement Test”. The test is completely up to teachers and will be based on student goals previously set. Students will be tested on what they are currently working on in their lessons such as scales, vocal exercises, a song, memorization, or whatever is decided by the teacher. The MLS provides an obtainable challenge for students so they are more motivated to practice at home and feel success!
Once the student has passed their “Achievement Test”, teachers notify the front desk staff so they can award the student with a colorful wristband, and at certain levels, a trophy with their name on it, to celebrate their accomplishment! Check these out in the lobby at the school.
Ask your teacher for more information about the program.
30. How much does the Musical Ladder System cost?
The Musical Ladder System is included in the Individual Instruction Program at Little School of Music. There is no additional cost to participate.
Staff Roles & Responsibilities
Our LSM staff is here to assist you and make sure you are getting the most out of your experience at Little School of Music. Please keep in mind we do have specific roles and responsibilities for staff members to help avoid confusion. For assistance, please contact the appropriate staff member.
LSM Admin – The administration oversees the general school and business operations and administrative responsibilities.
LSM Front Desk Staff – Our friendly faces at the front assist with administrative responsibilities such as enrollment, scheduling, billing, book sales, and general school questions. All questions pertaining to these administrative areas should be directed to the front desk or admin.
LSM Teachers – Our talented teaching staff develops a custom curriculum for students based on the age and LSM Music Achievement Program Level the student is enrolled in. All class and lesson curriculum and performance questions should be directed to your teacher.
Please feel free to reach out to us anytime if you have additional questions.