What Is Involved In A Skype Lesson?
Skype elocution lessons are hour-long lessons with Matt Pocock, the 3,000-lesson coach with a MA in voice. During the hour, Matt takes you through the fundamentals of elocution, voice or accent coaching, depending on what your needs are. You co-ordinate online using Google Docs, with both teacher and student working on pieces of text or exercises to get your voice to its best.
A typical elocution lesson might lesson might involve:
5 Minutes: Introduction. Talking about your voice, where your accent came from, any vocal health issues that might influence the lessons.
10 Minutes: Diagnosis. Matt will ask you to read out sections of text from BBC News, or his large library of practice texts.
30 Minutes: Work. Matt takes you through the sounds and phonemes that you struggle with, helping you to gain more control over your voice and pronunciation.
15 Minutes: Summing Up. Matt provides you with practice sentences and video & audio exercises to work through in the week before the next lesson.
Isn’t It Better To Have Lessons Face-To-Face?
Matt has taught Skype lessons in several disciplines: in singing, acting coaching, and elocution. Skype lessons suit some things more than others. For singing, the pupil needs to be in the room so that you can see the whole body co-ordinate to form the voice. For acting, there needs to be a dynamic in-the-moment responsiveness to the coach’s interaction that is hard to replicate over Skype.
But elocution lessons over Skype tend to work excellently. The work is not often very full-bodied: it tends to focus only on the movement of the mouth. It is not loud work, so it can even be done at your own desk. It is also not emotionally committing, like acting training can be. It is highly technical, cerebral work.
This means that elocution lessons are fantastic over Skype. There is very little that can be done in person that can’t be done online. Matt has seen his Skype students develop just as fast as his face-to-face students. What is more, when the learning happens in your home, it tends to stick better – when you practice, you more easily recall what the teacher said to you.
So Skype is a fantastic way to study elocution. Convenient, and without many pitfalls that people associate with Skype.
What Happens If The Skype Connection Fails?
For his elocution lessons, Matt operates an ‘Injury Time’ system. He keeps a stopwatch handy, and any time that the Skype connection gets lost, he starts the stopwatch. All of this time either gets added onto the end of the lesson, or saved for the next lesson. Students have even earned half-price lessons by saving up enough injury time. So fear not – you will not be penalised for a poor connection.
How Do I Pay For The Lessons?
UK students: Lessons can be paid for via BACS transfer at Matt’s personal account.
Overseas students: Lessons can be paid for via PayPal at Matt’s personal email address.
How Do I Book A Skype Lesson?
How Should I Prepare For A Skype Lesson?
Skype elocution lessons need a couple of things from the student to be successful. First of all, make sure your internet connection is as secure and fast as possible by removing anything which might drain your bandwidth. Even though lost time can be recouped later, a good connection in the lesson is important for good learning.
Next, make sure you have headphones connected to your laptop. This means that you can hear the teacher’s voice fully and that there isn’t any feedback coming from the student’s microphone.
Finally, make sure that you have plenty of water on-hand, and that you haven’t strained your voice in the 24 hours before the lesson.
But if this seems do-able, get in touch with Matt below or book to arrange a lesson.