A jam session is an informal, yet orderly and organized event where teachers and students (and anyone else who wishes to participate) sit in a large circle with instruments in hand. A jam session leader would begin the session by asking a member of the circle to choose a favorite tune*. That person would count off and begin the tune while everyone else in the circle plays chords as accompaniment. When that first person finishes playing the melody, the melody would then be passed on to the next person in the circle (usually going clockwise). The first person would then move on to chords and become an accompanist for the duration of that tune. When the melody comes around the circle and returns to the first person, it is time to end that tune and move on to a new tune. The person sitting left of the first person would be the next to choose a tune. This process follows until everyone in the circle has had a turn to choose a tune.
Jam sessions are usually held in the homes of students or teachers. When a jam session group grows too large to fit in a living room or kitchen, it becomes imperative for the session members to seek out a bigger room at a public facility like a school or library. IAMF encourages all interested people to initiate a local monthly (or weekly) jam session. It is important to elect a jam session leader whose job is to not only run the actual session each month, but to keep session members informed and up-to-date (by email or otherwise) on all jam session activity (time, location, changes in schedule, what tune or tunes on which to focus each month, etc.).