Tips for parents when trying to find the right music for your child – where do I start?

1.     Talk to your child about their passions and interests

Ask your child what type of instrument they want to play.  They may even know what style and genres that they are already interested in!   Try to explore as to how they may wish to learn.  Individual lessons are generally more expensive and you will need to consider if this type of intense tuition is right for your child at the very beginning.  Some children are even keen to explore learning themselves through the use of online tutorials before deciding exactly what instrument they wish to learn.

2.     Find out who’s out there – via our website, schools and other parents

Ask at school if they have instrumental tutors visiting and what types of instruments are on offer.  If the school doesn’t offer instrumental lessons, or they do not have a visiting tutor teaching the instrument of your child’s choice, consider learning out of school.  You can find out more by visiting Swindon Young Musician central school of music. Click here for more information.

3.     Consider location and teaching environment

4.     Check for DBS, safeguarding and insurance

The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) lets you check if someone has a criminal record which bars them from working with children and vulnerable adults.  People who work unsupervised with children should have an Enhanced Level DBS certificate issued in the last 3-years or be subscribed to the ‘update service’.   Here you can check their DBS records online using their code number.  Click here

Regular safeguarding training is good practice.  Tutors that work with Swindon Music Service undertake online safeguarding training on an annual basis.

5.     Ask about qualifications and CPD

Not all music tutors will have qualifications.  This should not pose a problem as long as they take part in Continuing Professional Development, training courses, conferences and network events.  By this, they will be keeping up with national trends and developments.   Some tutors will have music degrees, PGCE teaching qualifications and experience in classroom teaching.

membership of professional bodies also shows a commitment to high standards, e.g. Music Mark, Incorporated Society of Musicians, Musician’s Union.  As does being a tutor of Swindon Music Service.  All these tutors are auditioned and interviewed before being taken on as tutors.

6.     Find out about experience of specific ages, abilities and standards



7.     Ask about styles of music and connections to other things


8.     Make sure the progression routes are right for your child


9.     Find out about costs and subsidies


10.    Ask about references and a trial lesson