From birth to around 11 years old kids are wired to do what they see parents do. And they’re eager to make teachers and parents happy and proud.
But after that, they have to begin finding their own way. And often that means doing the exact opposite of what parents and teachers tell them to do. By 13 or so, young people do not appreciate being told what to do. I bet you don’t, either! I know I don’t.
As piano teachers partner with parents to support kids in lessons, we can either work with that completely natural part of the maturing process. Or we can fight it to the detriment of all involved.
It’s easy for piano teachers to provide lessons for young kids that look productive in the short term.We can do it by telling them exactly what notes to play and making them go home and practice. And it might work. For a while. But it will fail. Either spectacularly or with a thud.
By age 13 if we haven’t given students a music vocabulary they can use to think and create their own music, they’ll resent us for limiting them. Or they’ll be so bored with their lessons they’ll have no interest in pursuing music further.
It doesn’t have to be that way. Find a piano teacher who knows how to nurture kids’ creativity. Forget about the formal recitals and theory books. Jam sessions and informal get togethers where kids can improvise and be dynamic with their music making is what sets the stage for a lifelong positive relationship with music. This is how we teach kids to create their own musical future.
This doesn't mean lessons become patronizing or coddling. It means that a skilled teacher with a compelling curriculum will make sure that the fun in lessons is directed to helping students learn serious skills that will last.
My course Play and Sing in Harmony is designed to give you everything you need to support your child and their piano teacher. So your child will be learning that music vocabulary that’s so vital to their musical maturity no matter how far down the road that is. It's always sooner than we think. This is how you'll get ready.
For less than the price of two months of lessons you’ll get the tools you need to help your child find their way musically. So they’ll be ready for that time when they’re no longer interested in doing what they’re told for the sake of obedience . Instead they will have found the value and strength in their own creative musical expression.
This is what parents need to understand about kids in piano lessons. That their success is not going to look like what you want. That doesn't mean they're not successful.
Trust the process and trust them to create their own vision for success. If they’re taught appropriately the results will be more magical than you imagined. Play and Sing in Harmony is available here.
Photo by Mehmet Turgut Kirkgoz : https://www.pexels.com/photo/young-girl-playing-a-piano-11472195/