It has been proven time and again, that learning music also aids a child’s personal development. It improves academic skills, and social interaction thus boosting self-esteem. It refines patience and discipline while introducing the child to a variety of culture.
With those benefits in mind, more and more parents are determined to bring their children to piano lessons, more so at a very early age.
Unbeknownst to nobody, children are naturally curious. They have the urge to discover, eager to learn new things. Every parent capitalizes on this, wanting their kids to start music education as early as possible.
There is usually no definitive age to start with the lessons. But at the onset, it is important for inherent desire and instilled interest in music. One must also consider if their child has the physical ability to operate the mechanisms of the piano. And if the child has the attention span to sit still and listen to instructions.
That is only one part of the process, the other part lies within equipping the instructors with the proper capabilities to bring out, train and harness your child’s talents.
Setting the appropriate mood can be one of the factors to make or break your child’s interest in starting and continuing with the lessons. After all, the first lesson is indicative of whether or not the student would want to proceed with the training.
It can be an exciting experience for some, while learning something new may also be daunting to a few. Whatever the case, they must be assured that they will have fun. They need to feel that they will be helped and supported all throughout.
Additionally, one cannot discount the fact that good communication skills is needed for an amazing lesson. It must be a prerequisite for instructors to be able to explain freely and efficiently. However, communication skills is not limited to the words spoken for lessons but also refer to an unspoken language.
This revolves upon proper psychological capacity of the instructor to instigate appreciation for the lesson and to make it interesting for the student.
Another good method would be to show them a book and allow them to sift through the pages, play a snippet from the songs and have them pick their selection.
My favorite in particular, is how the discussion for proper hand position goes. The teacher will ask the student to pretend that a cat or a dog lives inside a house. Their hands will be the pretend-house. The teacher explains that the house should be open enough to accept other guests like frogs, turtles, butterflies and the like. Their fingers will be the pretend-windows of the house and so must be kept open and not closed to let the light in and make the other animals want to enter and visit the house.
But sometimes, an animal like the turtle decides to come pay a visit and since turtles are slow, it takes a long time to get inside. So, they must learn to maintain their fingers in a steady position. The teachers see how long they can keep the proper hand position, and this becomes a part of their initial training.
Basically, it is the exertion of effort to make the lesson captivating for their young minds.
Their first thought should be that music is all fun and game, 90% of the first lesson. It may be a long or short process which varies from children to children.
However, let us not forget that vital as it may be to encourage fun teaching; skills and proper playing habits must also be practiced and established early on for ease of learning and development along the road. Gradually, the teacher will retain the game but also input the educational process.
Each method should be catered to the student individually. It diverges based on different factors as in intellectual capability and behavior with regard to the child’s patience and discipline. Moreover, depending on the age and attentiveness of the student, there may be more or less from the instructor’s checklist to be accomplished.
And above all, encouragement and support is the key to preserve the yearning for learning. Parents and teachers must work hand in hand to motivate the student to keep going. Some days are tougher than the others, but be blunt about it; Practice makes perfect. Continue practicing and starting over to perfect the required skills and you’re on the road to success.
This blog is contributed by our guest blogger:
Paulé Charisse D. Medel, Business Development Coordinator at Maestro Music and Arts Centre