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A comment for Steve Fawthrop re amatuer's charging for lessons [#237]

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reply A comment for Steve Fawthrop re amatuer's charging for lessons (2006-01-04 15:39) [#811]

George Caplan I just read your criteria for amatuers charging for lessons. I must say I think I agree with your sentiments, with one caveat which I wanted to get your view on.

Your emphasis is on giving back, and not charging for what you got for free. I agree with that completely. I am about your strength, lost a close game to you once in a tournament, same AGA rating. Like you, I am too old to have had much benefit of internet training on the way up, but I go over games with weaker players several times a week on line, and I am the strongest player at my club every week, and play and teach everyone I can. Obviously, I do not charge for any of this.

However, every once in a while, an enthusiastic beginner, or frustrated kyu player wants to make some quicker progress. They come to my home, at an appointed time each week, for two hours plus of game review and teaching games, sometimes with life and death homework etc. This is additional time away from work and my family and I have been known to charge $20 for such lessons. The role of this fee is not for me to make money - I charge far more than $10 per hour in my actual occupation and I rarely have more then one such student at a time - but rather for both of us to take the time seriously and to make it more productive as a result.

I still play my "students" and go over their games at clubs and tournaments without charge, I have rarely had more than one of these eager folks at a time - this is not my retirement plan - I simply would like your comment on a nominal fee making both teacher and student take the situation more seriously.

DrStraw: Re: A comment for Steve Fawthrop re amatuer's charging for lessons (2006-01-04 23:19) [#818]

I have done this myself occasionally but never asked for financial reward. All I ask of my student is that he return the compliment for someone else. As long as I see another link in the chain I will continue my efforts. If I see a longer chain forming then I will definitely continue my efforts. I have been using this technique for online teaching and, in fact, this is the premise behind the KGS Teaching Ladder which I formed and was originally called "The Straw Hut".

I might add that the few amateurs who have taught me during my development have almost exclusively taught on the same priniciples. Some years ago I wrote a book review for the AGA and they were offering gift certificates for each review. I believe in these ideas so strongly that I told them to donate the value to the AGF instead.

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