Mission practice! - Motivating your child to practice

Need help with your young piano student or maybe just like to share the joy?

Postby Stretto » Sat Mar 31, 2007 7:23 am

How might a parent help to motivate their child to practice the piano regularly at home? Whose responsibility is it to ensure a child practices, the parents or the teacher?
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Postby Dr. Bill Leland » Thu Apr 05, 2007 7:06 pm

How can the teacher "ensure a child practices"? All we can do is assign, motivate, cajole, threaten, give a poor grade, and all those other strategies--but only the child and the parent have control over what happens at home. (Sometimes the child has more control than the parent!)

B. L.
Technique is 90 per cent from the neck up.
Dr. Bill Leland
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Postby 108-1121887355 » Thu Apr 12, 2007 11:16 am

From my letter to parents about practicing, I have found that many parents are stressed!!

The students, some of them, have responded well, but the home situations are really telling.

"I could not practice as my Mom cleaned the piano and my music fell benind it" (The Mother verified the story). "It was too busy and so I didn't practice much".

Mothers with jobs outside the home, some starting this year or last year and having trouble scheduling time. Mothers stressed with problems from another child, a new puppy, sick kids, too many activities! This is before the baseball and soccer seasons begin! Many activities are twice a week. If you have more than one child, you are driving to different places every day all week.

I don't know what the teachers do who cannot be flexible in rearranging lessons. I don't think I could have been so flexible years ago when I had many more students. Now, I can be and want to have the student continue if they want to, so I adjust lessons.

Teachers who go to the student's homes probably relieve a lot of stress for the parent. I prefer to teach on my own piano, in tune, with good lighting and seating, and music at hand. There is also the time element and gas dollars for the teacher.

I raised three children, part of the time as a single parent, and I often worked part time - but life was not as hectic as it seems for parents now. Thank goodness!

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