Best Practices: Online Lessons

Covid-19 Response and RecommendationsCCM online lessons will be using Zoom, a video conferencing service. Detailed Zoom instructions have been emailed by Emma Huggard, the CCM Student Services Manager, and listed below. Using Zoom can be done with any device (phone, tablet, computer) but it would be ideal to use the method that has the largest screen. If you are using a desktop computer (as opposed to a laptop), you will need to make sure you have a microphone.

Take some time to view this helpful video: EFFECTIVE PRACTICE OF MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS

Your private lesson instructor will be in touch with you directly to confirm your lesson time and will be sending you a link to your Zoom appointment. Try using headphones for the lesson as this will limit feedback and also ensure that you hear your instructor better. 

Please log into Zoom 5 - 8 minutes before your lesson time to avoid any technological difficulties and view these helpful Youtube videos beforehand: or 


Prepare for your meeting: Download Zoom using the option from their Download Center that is appropriate for your device:

  • computer: download the web browser client
  • tablet or phone: download the mobile app entitled ZOOM Cloud Meetings from the App Store or Google Play. 
Please find a place in your home that is quiet, with good lighting.  Again, make sure to join your meeting 5-8 minutes ahead of the scheduled time, so you can test your audio and video.
Join your meeting: Click the link your instructor sent you, and you’ll have access to the meeting. 
If you’re on a computer, you may receive a popup like the one shown here. Click “Open Zoom”.
Your meeting will open in a new window.
Open Zoom
Test audio: Click the caret next to the microphone and choose "Test Speaker and Microphone." Then, follow the prompts.
Test audio

Check Video: To preview your video, click the caret next to the video camera and choose "Video Settings." You'll then be able to see what your webcam sees.

Check video

Meeting time: When it's time for your lesson, click both the microphone and the video camera to unmute and start the video. Your instructors and the CCM staff are ready to help you. Please contact us with any questions you may have.

If you choose to use headphones, here are some helpful tips:

Do not use headphones with a built in microphone (these are called TRRS cables). This would include the headphones that come with your phone. If you are unsure if they have a built in microphone, the plug will have three rings like this:

3-ring plug

Speaker-only headphones will have two rings (TRS cables):

2-ring plug

When playing your instrument while using headphones, make sure you only cover one ear. It’s important to keep one ear completely uncovered so you can hear your music as clear as possible. Enjoy your lessons!