Today we’re joined by Sharon Mark-Teggart, who along with Dr. Sally Cathcart runs The Curious Piano Teachers, one of the leading organisations training up the next generation of piano teachers. And as you’ll discover in this episode they’re leveraging the latest research into what makes for effective learning and teaching to help those new teachers be more successful, enjoy their teaching more, and be continually developing and improving throughout their teaching career.

On the face of it you might think this interview is one for aspiring piano teachers only, or perhaps just music teachers. But we would strongly encourage you to take the kind of attitude Sharon talks about in this conversation: one of curiosity. She talks about how she would sometimes go along to training courses that didn’t seem directly applicable to her, for example ones designed for classroom music teachers – but by being open-minded and curious she found she would always come away with a ton of new tools and inspiration to apply in her own teaching.

In the same way we would encourage you to listen to this conversation and not just take it at face value. When we talk about teachers and students, try to consider how it all could apply not just to your own role in a student-teacher relationship, but also when studying resources online by yourself, or even when you sit and practice and you act as your own teacher. We think you’ll find that all the insights Sharon shares in this conversation can be very relevant to you in one context or another in your own musical life.

In this conversation we talk about:

  • The transformation Sharon went through in her own teaching, and why she is now so passionate about changing the status quo in piano teaching.
  • What it means to bring curiosity to your teaching and learning, and why that can be so powerful.
  • The teaching toolbox she has built up and now shares, including the surprising variety and power in the questions you can ask to accelerate learning.

We also talk a bit about the online course and teaching diploma training they have developed, and so if you’re a teacher yourself or know somebody who is, you won’t want to miss the details of that.

Listen to the episode:

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Musical U interviews The Curious Piano Teachers' Sharon Mark-Teggart on the immense value of curiosity in both learning and teaching music.