Zach Tolan

Zach T.

Grand Rapids, MI
Teaching Locations:
Profile-location-online Online
Teaching Locations:
Profile-location-online Online
Levels taught:
Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced
I use the Exact-Notes online music curriculum for K-12 students and homeschoolers, which includes group practice features where students can get daily one-on-one support from home, and dive deeper into improvisation, composition, and music appreciation together with other music-loving students from around the world.

About Zach T.

Hello! I've been a full-time private music tutor for 17 years for violin, viola, cello, guitar, piano, and ukulele! In that time I've enjoyed teaching more than 30,000 private lessons to students of every type. If you're looking for a fun, well-rounded, and professional approach to music either as a hobby or a serious pursuit, please contact me!


Write a Review
33 Reviews
Profile-location-online Online

Posted Dec 2, 2019
Noell R.

Take classes with Zach, he makes learning the violin fun and exciting! He is great with students of all ages and levels! Learning an instrument with him is fun and he is professional yet engaging, with his teaching approach.

Posted Oct 31, 2019
Noell R.

Zach aided me in setting realistic, helpful attainable goals. I'm looking forward to what is in store for my violin abilities, thank you.

Posted Oct 24, 2019
Profile-location-online Online

Zach is an excellent instructor. He makes learning piano fun and exciting. My daughter is so excited about piano, she plays all the time and it’s awesome!!

Posted Oct 11, 2019
Michelle R.
Profile-location-online Online

Learning a lot after just a few lessons!

Posted Sep 25, 2019
Profile-location-online Online

Zach has been AMAZING for my child. He is patient and able to pull the best out of each student he teaches. He also has a phenomenal way of teaching music. He developed a program that makes it easier for the student to read the music, levels to help them progress and opportunities to interact with other people in live practice sessions. You will not be disappointed if you use him!

Posted Sep 17, 2019
Jennifer G.
Profile-location-online Online

Mr. Zach is an amazing instructor. I’ve learned so much from him!

Posted Sep 11, 2019
Profile-location-online Online

My son is loving the cello and I am certain that has a lot to do with Zach’s teaching style. He is a great instructor!

Posted Sep 5, 2019
Michelle G.
Profile-location-online Online

Thank You!!!!!!! It was a great start

Posted Aug 29, 2019
Profile-location-online Online

Really great instructor. Actively keeps the student engaged while motivating them. He also uses a really cool teaching style he designed that helps the student understand the notes so much better. This method creates less stress for the student why trying to learn and play at the same time.

Posted Jun 29, 2019
Profile-location-online Online

Very friendly, fun and helpful. Helped my son feel like playing an instrument didn't just have to be a chore but it can be FUN.

Posted Jun 17, 2019
Profile-location-online Online

Zach is amazing. I've had two lessons with him thus far and I feel so much more positive about learning the piano. I'm 37, getting into it a bit later than most, and he's great at keeping me on track and focused on the basics. He has a wealth of knowledge about music theory and the mechanics, as well as theories on how to teach. I'm pleased I stumbled onto him as my first teacher!

Posted Jun 14, 2019
Profile-location-online Online

Zach works very well with kids and is entertaining while he teaches!

Posted Apr 22, 2019
Profile-location-online Online

Zoe felt comfortable and enjoyed the lesson. Zach was able to help us figure out how to get the instrument back in tune after moving to a new climate. The online format worked great.

Posted Mar 26, 2019
Profile-location-online Online

Zach is encouraging and makes lessons fun!

Posted Aug 16, 2018
Emma R.
Profile-location-online Online

Emma is delighted with her first lesson. I needed to insist on putting her violin down to sit down and finish her school work. She is home schooled. Love the way he teaches. Very clear lessons.

Posted Aug 13, 2018
Profile-location-online Online

Robert really enjoyed his lesson! He was pleased with his progress last week!

Posted Aug 5, 2018
Profile-location-online Online

My son enjoyed the lesson!

Posted Jul 11, 2018
Profile-location-online Online

Posted Jun 15, 2018
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

My 11 year old son had his first violin lesson with Zach and LOVED IT! Looking forward to his lesson next week! :)

Posted Mar 7, 2018
Rebekah D.
Profile-location-online Online

Great first lesson.

Posted Feb 27, 2018
Profile-location-online Online

Great first lesson! Looking forward to many more!

Posted Feb 26, 2018
Profile-location-online Online

Great first lesson! Looking forward to the next one!

Posted Feb 26, 2018
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Zach is able to keep my active son engaged during the lesson. My son has already learned a ton and is eager to learn more!

Posted Feb 7, 2018
Elle K.
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Zach has been awesome! He's knowledgable, is patient with my young daughter, and she has improved immensely in just 5 lessons!

Posted Feb 7, 2018
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Very energetic, fun and helped me improve!

Posted Feb 3, 2018
Profile-location-online Online

Posted Jan 21, 2018
Profile-location-online Online

Posted Dec 21, 2017
Profile-location-online Online

My 6 yo is taking violin classes with Zach online. The classes are high energy, very engaging, informative, and fun.

Posted Dec 9, 2017
Sofya Tairova
Profile-location-online Online

Posted Dec 1, 2017
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

I really appreciated that Zach was very understanding and flexible with crazy changing work schedules. He does a good job of mixing music theory, technical exercises, while still being open and even encouraging the student to working on styles and pieces they are interested in and enjoy. Zach is great about asking the student what they want to learn and work on, while still making sure that they are always learning something new and always pushing themselves. Zach always seems to genuinely care and get excited about music, teaching, and his students.

Posted Nov 19, 2017
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

Zach is very personable and figured out a great method to motivate my reluctant child--fake money!! He also developed his own musical notation to aid in helping students learn how to read music but in such a way that isn't as complicated as the standard notation. My son really likes him.

Posted Nov 10, 2017
Profile-location-studio Teacher's Studio

My daughter is very shy and quiet. Zach is fantastic and she loves him! He is patient and funny. His way of teaching works! She is just 6 years old and is already playing songs after just 6 weeks. His music curriculum is so easy to understand and play! We've been very impressed.

Posted Nov 8, 2017

Photos & Videos

7 Photos & Videos


Exact-Notes Music Curriculum Designer & Teacher
Oct 2016 - Present

Exact-Notes, LLC

Teacher and online music curriculum designer for Niles Community Schools and Hamilton Community Schools virtual school partnerships in West Michigan.

Private Teacher
Sep 2002 - Present


Full-time private music tutor for classical Violin, Viola, Cello, Irish and American Fiddle, Classical and Acoustic Guitar, Classical Piano, & Ukulele for ages 5+

Private Teacher
Aug 2015 - Aug 2016

Marshall Music Co.

Violin, Viola, Cello, Guitar, & Piano lessons

Aug 2009 - Nov 2012

Lil' Learners! Fine Arts for Kids!

Fine arts education in Jenison, Holland, and Sparta, MI.


B.A. Philosophy
Sep 2003 - Jun 2005

Grand Valley State University



Fluent / Native Proficiency

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