Private music lessons are time consuming and relatively
expensive, as are instruments. Here are some
suggestions for getting the most out of the experience:
▪ Pack ALL necessary items, music, notebooks,
nstrument IN the case, charts, etc.
▪ Leave early enough to arrive with a few moments
▪ Even if you are rushed for time to get to the lesson,
or stuck in traffic, adjust your mental state so as to
arrive with a calm demeanor. This helps kids focus
he lesson. We can't change what happens to us, but
we can change how we react to those things.
▪ Feed yourself and the children.
Thirsty, hungry people are less able to concentrate
▪ Arrange for sitters for siblings who are likely to
distract you during the lessons.
▪ Learn about and understand Suzuki's
Talent Education Philosophy.
▪ Discuss any practicing problems with the
teacher out of earshot of the student.
▪ Be engaged in the lesson as if a member
of an audience. What you see is what you are to
do at home!
▪ Which means: Please do not clip coupons, text,
check emails, read a book, daydreams,
talk with siblings, doze off....
▪ Take notes in a dedicated notebook,
not on random slips of paper.
▪ Take detailed notes.
Many parents take the briefest of notes,
which are subsequently useless.
▪ Do NOT under any circumstances make
negative, critical or impatient comments about
or to your child, his practice habits, or her
lack of getting a part right, EVEN if she did
so at home.
▪ Sometimes there is a lot of repetition in a lesson.
Explore why the repetition is occurring:
what do you see or hear that changes, and what
is the teacher after? Please don't tune it out.
▪ Delight in your child.
▪ Review your notes as soon as is possible.
The same day is ideal.
▪ Prepare a plan for home practice for the week.
Do you need any new games, attitudes, ideas to
add enthusiasm for you or your child to the practice
▪ Practicing immediately after getting home is the
most productive time of the week, as the lesson's
teaching points are freshest in the minds of
everyone. It can be a short practice, just hitting
the highlights. Do no equate a lesson with
practice time. They are not the same!
▪ Make notes during the week of things that you
or your child don't understand, or are having
trouble executing, noting measure numbers
if appropriate. Prepare your child to share
these with the teachers at the next lesson.
▪ Learn how to facilitate and encourage
regular practice. Teach and nurture at your
child's level as they can't understand yours.
▪ Be patients and above all: Nurture with love.
© 2012 Susan A. Sommerville
all rights reserved