Parents attending lessons: rewards and challenges


Why would teachers want to encourage parents to attend lessons? Although some teachers—Suzuki, Yamaha, or preschool, for example—routinely invite parents, not all music teachers find that children or their guardians benefit from a shared experience. The following is an overview of some of the rewards and challenges of parental attendance at lessons...

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Make parents your partners

​In her book ​The Gift of Failure: How the Best Parents Learn to Let Go So Their Children Can Succeed, ​Jessica Laney writes,"... why do so many teachers cite the challenge of dealing with their students' parents as their main reason for abandoning the classroom?" 1 Throughout the public and private school systems, the relationships between parents...

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Interviewing Transfer Students

Frances Clark was right when she said, "All students are transfer students. Even if our students are our own, the teacher we were last year is different from the teacher we are this year. In fact, the teacher we were last week is different from the teacher we are this week!" We are always changing and our students are always changing." We do change...

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Parents Observation Week

It feels like school has just begun, but we have already completed our Parents Observation Week here at The New School for Music Study. Parents Observation Week is always held the last week of October. While we do have some parents who regularly sit in on lessons, this is not expected or practiced for most of our students. Our lessons are designed ...

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Thoughts on the Tiger Mom debate

To say that Amy Chua has touched a nerve with parents is an understatement akin to saying that Franz Liszt had an influence on piano performance and teaching. Since the publication of her book Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother in January, and the subsequent Wall Street Journal article "Why Chinese Mothers are Superior," a firestorm of discussion and ...

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What Special Qualities Do Parents of Children Who Succeed at the Piano Share? Part 2

Barbara Kreader, Editor The Magic Triangle: Teacher/Student/Parent Barbara Kreader, Editor For this issue, teacher and composer, Bruce Berr continues this column's three part overview of the qualities parents of successful piano students share.  The Interview by Bruce Berr Isabella recently turned six, and she has been studying piano for ...

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What qualities do families that support their children's piano study share?

from the series: The Magic Triangle: Teacher/Student/Parent Barbara Kreader, Editor Gather together a group of piano teachers and the topic often turns to their students and practicing or, more often, the lack of it. Everyone recognizes the Cliffhanger Family. Whether or not they show up each week matches the odds of winning the lottery. We al...

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What Do You Like About Group Lessons?

The Magic Triangle: Teacher/Student/Parent Group teaching takes special skills. I rediscovered this fact last Fall when I began teaching Music Together, a program for infants, toddlers, and their caregivers. True, I had taught regular third and first grade sometime during the Dark Ages of my 20s, but time passes and memories fade. I distinctly...

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Helping at Home: A Parent's Point of View

How Do You Buy Supplemental Music For Your Child? Miami, Florida. Kristen Smith, nine, loves to visit music stores with her dad. Peter Smith, a choir member who plays piano by ear, peruses music for appropriate material and sings to Kristen as they shop. Then she decides whether or not to buy. Their collection includes hymns, Christmas mu...

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What Do Parents Have to Say About Their Children's Practice?

Last spring, I asked seven teachers to distribute a questionnaire to the parents of five or six of their students. Twenty- seven parents (who, for the most part, retained anonymity) returned the questionnaires. Not all of them answered every question, and the resulting data is by no means "scientific," but for the purposes of this department, ...

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What's Your Answer? Teacher Responses to Previous Magic Triangle Questions.

I want to express my deepest appreciation to the many readers who write in to share their ideas and teaching tips with us! Your ideas are always interesting and challenging. Generally, we share these ideas in the Post Box section of each department. However, due to the generosity of our readers, the Magic Triangle Post Box has fallen behind. S...

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What Have You Learned From Listening to Your Own Children's Practice?

from the series: The Other Teacher: Home Practice As a piano teacher with no children of my own, I have sometimes wondered how, as a parent, I might have handled music lessons for my child. Would I (should I) have insisted that the child take piano lessons? If so, what role would I have played in this event? Would I (should I) have taught the ...

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How do you manage the time and commitment for piano study and practice?

In today's world of busy schedules, working parents, and children involved in a wide array of activities outside of school, piano teachers are more and more frequently confronted by the dilemmas of scheduling their students' lessons, of being flexible enough to meet the needs of parents and students, and of requiring adequate practice time for stea...

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What Are Your Main Concerns About Your Students' Home Practice? Part II

From the series The Other Teacher: Home Practice by Elvina Pearce with other KEYBOARD COMPANION Associate Editors In the Summer, 1992, issue, the question addressed in our Home Practice Department was, What are your main concerns about your students' home practice? The article began with a list of twenty-four items which were submitted by...

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How Do You Educate Parents and Students About the Importance of Music Study?

Music makes a difference. This simple statement sums up the answer to perhaps the single most important question for music teachers - Why is music study important? In this issue, The Magic Triangle will give you an overview of the importance of music study, provide some suggestions on how to educate parents and students about the importance of...

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About Piano Magazine

Piano Magazine is the leading resource for pianists, piano teachers, and piano enthusiasts. We bring you informative, interesting, and inspiring ideas on all aspects of piano teaching, learning, and performing. The official name of Clavier Companion magazine was changed to Piano Magazine in 2019.

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