Unlike kids in my generation, which wasn’t that long ago, 80’s 90’s….. Us kids were lucky to be in one thing, and really lucky if it was two.
Nowadays, over 90% of our students are in 4 different activities, or more.
Taking music lessons is fun, a lot of fun. But just like any other academic course, it takes work, discipline and effort, which is why it has been proven that taking music lessons improves grades, intelligence, social skills, builds confidence….etc.
But would we pull our kids out of school if they weren’t doing their homework?
That may seems absurd, but during the last few years we’ve increasingly had parents pull their children out of lessons, not because they weren’t having fun, or enjoying coming to lessons, but because parents had to remind them to practice at home, and it was becoming a chore….. for them.
I find that students taking lessons after a few years, or less, require that extra push in order to get to that next level, which may include increasing practice time. Assignments, and songs that came easy, now require a bit more work in order to complete.
We all have to remind our children to do their homework, of course they would rather play outside, play video games, visit friends…etc. But…unfortunately, kids are not born with discipline, they are taught discipline. Just like we have be present to help our kids during homework time, we need to be present during practice time as well. The best idea is to set up a “practice time” every day. It could be before school, after school, before dinner…… After a short while, it becomes a habit. Even Mozart had to have his dad hovering over his shoulder……he didn’t want to practice every day, and he was a child prodigy.
Generally speaking, up until the age of 13, some children need to be pushed to practice/do their homework more than others. For example, I had to be pushed to practice until I was eleven years old. Thank god my parents did. Otherwise, I definitely wouldn’t be where I am today. Music taught me discipline, and work ethic. You get what you put into learning how to play an instrument. Music doesn’t lie, and it can make you very humble.
Just like academics, taking music lessons is a lifelong skill and asset that children will carry with them for the rest of their life. I’d be very wealthy if I got paid a dollar every time I heard an adult say they wish they would have stuck with music lessons, or wish their parents would have made them stay in music lessons, (there are exceptions of course).
The key to having a successful musical education and experience, is finding a great music teacher. Finding a good music teacher starts off with finding a qualified music school that hires qualified music instructors. A qualified music teacher is a lot more than hiring someone with a degree. Having a degree is just one part of the puzzle. Other important factors: Are the instructors currently involved the musical community, do they have stage, studio and tour experience, if so, to what extent? Are they personable? Sometimes, a specific teacher gets along great with one student but not another, so it is important to find a music school that teams you up with the right instructor.
Finding the right music teacher, ensures your child will be enjoying music lessons, and the benefits that they will carry with them forever.