Thursday, February 20, 2014

Do you wish you kept taking piano lessons?

Aleah is my reluctant piano student. She swears she will never regret quitting piano lessons.  I have discussed with her there are a lot of people out there that wish they had kept taking lessons.  Are you one of them?  Do you have a story to tell her that will keep her playing piano?


Lani said...

Recommendations- let her quit once she can play basic Christmas music or children's hymns.

My cousin kept her son interested in music by getting sheet music for his favorite artists- (Adele)- Now he can't get enough. Just a thought.

Rhamnites said...

I love playing piano, but I always have. She should definitely be able to play hymns. Maybe a different teacher, or group lessons? Or a different instrument? Good luck!

C said...

I wish that my parents had pressed me to keep playing. Now I play for RS with the melody line only. It's more than anyone else in the room can play, but I sooooo wish I could play more. Sometimes it is more of a distraction than a help.

Oh, and this post reminded me of this talk...

Good luck!

Christine Merrill said...

Ah, I didn't quit piano, BUT, I do have a reluctant piano student, and I have some thoughts...

Lige loves to play and plays all day long. Ellis, just never so natural at it, and no deep love of it. She's not lazy, she just doesn't get it as quickly, so it's not very fun. I teach her, and she doesn't really rebel against me, but sometimes it's been frustrating.

I talked to a friend about Suzuki method one week, and decided to try some Suzuki principles with Ellis, to see if it would help. I sat down and practiced with her every day. Sometimes, she growled, but she played a lot more than she did when she practiced by herself. I worked very hard to be the-most-positive-person in the world while we were practicing - I could be critical when I was her teacher, but during practice, I was her mom. I emphasized repetition - play this section 5 times or 10 times, so you can really get it stuck in your head.

After a few weeks of this, Ellis had stopped complaining, started progressing again, and I scaled back the practicing with her (I would work somewhere else in the room and just make sure she was doing ok). After a few more weeks, she was fine, and she practiced by herself.

Now, about a year later, she's still progressing. She still doesn't love practicing, and she still hits roadblocks occasionally. Like, last month, she started getting to songs where your hands move, and she didn't know her note names very well. We slowed down, I made her play a note naming game every day, practiced with her a bit, and now she's back to somewhat liking the piano again. And she's very proud of her accomplishments. And she has some talents that have emerged - she enjoys writing songs, for example.

So, from my experience, I think Aleah is saying that she's hit a wall, and I think if you help her get over it, she'll be glad. But it was a lot of work from me, and I'm sure it's even more work when you're not the teacher!

Good luck!