Teaching/learning philosophies - Do they matter?

Explore a new topic relevant to piano education monthly

Moderator: Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed

Postby celia » Sun May 11, 2008 12:02 am

Hi and thanks for your comments on my post.

[/quote]It seems you've made a very good start, in that you already have some good ideas about what things you think are important in teaching and learning
Dr Zeigler it was great to receive this encouragement from you and it has helped me tremendously to have positive comments at this early stage from some-one so experienced and knowledgeable.

Becibu, thanks also for the vote of confidence and
If a student is bored or fustrated its great to venture into your own teaching and seewhat you coud be doing to better your teaching but having said that would you question if the student had the initial motivation and interest in the piano in the first place? [quote]
Thanks for pointing this out. This aspect to "educating" is somewhat new to me as my experience consists of pre-school (the kids have to be there, like school, no choice,) and privately tutoring dyslexic kids (again, no choice, it is up to the parents) So I have always tried to make it all as enjoyable as possible under those circumstances. I had maybe not considered how learning piano is different. Interestingly though, when I moved to middle primary (in England at age 7) and had to change piano teachers, I did not get along with the new "nasty" teacher (she was highly stressed) and then my mum arranged for me to go to my original teacher on weekends. I still have the note the "nasty" teacher wrote my mum "Of course you can take Celia back to her old teacher if you want, but if she is not willing to practice she will never get anywhere with the piano" Well, she was WRONG because as soon as I was back with the teacher I liked I was wanting to learn and inspired to practice, went on to pass grades 2-7 and tomorrow am becoming a piano teacher myself!!
Stretto, I will also bear in mind your comments on how you can give a student too much choice. I know this was one of my shortcomings when I started working with pre-schoolers (who have even less idea what they want or need!!) All I meant was that I will listen to what their interests are before making decisions. Also I learnt at college that there are many different types of learner each requiring something different from a teacher. For example some people learn better given complete guidance, some learn better given more independence... A constant challenge I am sure... I will let you all know how I get on tomorrow!!
celia
 
Posts: 73
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 1:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Postby celia » Sun May 11, 2008 12:06 am

[quote="pianissimo"][/quote]
Sorry, my "quotes" didn't quite work out!! :(
celia
 
Posts: 73
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 1:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Postby 112-1182392787 » Sun May 11, 2008 4:46 am

I still have the note the "nasty" teacher wrote my mum "Of course you can take Celia back to her old teacher if you want, but if she is not willing to practice she will never get anywhere with the piano" Well, she was WRONG because as soon as I was back with the teacher I liked I was wanting to learn and inspired to practice, went on to pass grades 2-7 and tomorrow am becoming a piano teacher myself!!

This teacher should have asked herself why little Celia was not willing to practice. Since her highly stressed attitude was probably contributing to it, she could have made valuable changes to her teaching and maybe found improvement all around. Was it only you, as her only student, or most of her students, who were not practicing?
So good that you could go on with your first teacher. Besides not being stressed, what do you think she did that got you to practice and be involved?
User avatar
112-1182392787
 

Postby 112-1182392787 » Sun May 11, 2008 4:48 am

I think if you edit and reverse the symbols on your quote they will work. The first quote should have no slash:
[ quote ]
The second quote should have a slash:
[ / quote]
But in your post, the first quote has the slash.
User avatar
112-1182392787
 

Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Sun May 11, 2008 2:07 pm

One aspect of teaching philosophy that I've been all around, but haven't talked about specifically is what a "good" teaching philosophy might include. I think, to be useful to teacher and student, the philosophy should be as specific and as measurable (at least, in principle) as possible, and coupled with a specific goal.

For example, if one's philosophy of teaching is something like, "Being the best one can be is critical to success. I want to produce the best pianist possible from each student", it might be entirely true and laudable, but almost impossible to determine, except in the most approximate of ways, whether you're achieving the goal. On the other hand, if you say that "Sight-reading of music is critical to playing the piano. All my beginning students will learn to read and play written music.", such a philosophy and the consequential goal are determinable and achievable. With a small number of such definite philosophies and goals, one will have a pretty good basis for building teaching approaches customized for each student.




Edited By Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Editor on 1210773134
All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man's life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom. - Albert Einstein
User avatar
Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed
Site Admin
 
Posts: 994
Joined: Sun Jun 08, 2003 6:46 pm
Location: Rio Rancho, NM USA

Postby celia » Mon May 12, 2008 11:14 pm

celia wrote:

This teacher should have asked herself why little Celia was not willing to practice. Since her highly stressed attitude was probably contributing to it, she could have made valuable changes to her teaching and maybe found improvement all around. Was it only you, as her only student, or most of her students, who were not practicing?
So good that you could go on with your first teacher. Besides not being stressed, what do you think she did that got you to practice and be involved?

That's what I meant when i said I will try to please the kids as much as I can. Although yesterday when I asked them what they wanted to learn most of them said, " I don't know" The material I did with this teacher was totally dull and uninspiring. I know because I've been going through it all recently. The stuff I did with the good teacher I remembered enjoying, the stuff I did with the stressed teacher I either couldn't remember or I just remembered her getting stressed. She scrawled all over the music, things like "Count!!" "Steady beat" etc and although she didn't scrawl anything especially negative the scrawled comments brought back negative memories of the lesson. My good teacher never wrote anything on the page except where I had got to hands separately and then hands together. One of the kids yesterday had comments scrawled all over the page and was stilll making all the same mistakes which had bothered her last teacher (missed notes, wrong notes, incorrect timing etc) and I could immediately see that scribbling on the page had made no difference as she wasn't looking at the page when she played!! The difference between my two teachers was that the good one was really happy doing what she was doing and she was kind, patient, enthusiastic, positive. The stressed one, I believe, was in the wrong job, or possibly the right job but for too long. Celia.
celia
 
Posts: 73
Joined: Fri Mar 28, 2008 1:37 am
Location: New Zealand

Postby 112-1182392787 » Mon May 12, 2008 11:52 pm

I had a quick thought about comments scrawled on pages: They could be a reminder of what you do badly and then reinforce the problem. If I think I can't count, will I count better?
User avatar
112-1182392787
 

Postby Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed » Wed May 14, 2008 6:17 pm

celia wrote:That's what I meant when i said I will try to please the kids as much as I can. Although yesterday when I asked them what they wanted to learn most of them said, " I don't know" The material I did with this teacher was totally dull and uninspiring.

Keep in mind what I (and others) have said about leadership. When you're the teacher, you must lead, even if that means students aren't as pleased with you as they "might" be - like when you insist that they practice! :D Teaching is all about leading - at least in the area you're teaching. You have to lead students far enough that they can know what they want from you. They won't know it a priori.

Although I don't really want us to get too much into methods here, it might be interesting to talk a little about the philosophies behind popular piano methods. Just about any teacher can tell you what the "strengths" of a method are. It's a small step from there to deducing the philosophy underlying the method. This is an important matter for those teachers who use method materials, since they will want to use materials whose philosophies are consistent with their own.
All religions, arts and sciences are branches of the same tree. All these aspirations are directed toward ennobling man's life, lifting it from the sphere of mere physical existence and leading the individual towards freedom. - Albert Einstein
User avatar
Dr. John Zeigler - PEP Ed
Site Admin
 
Posts: 994
Joined: Sun Jun 08, 2003 6:46 pm
Location: Rio Rancho, NM USA

Previous

Return to Topic of Note

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

cron