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#1278133 - 09/30/09 05:55 PM Is it really that important?  
Joined: Feb 2005
Posts: 1,179
Ebony and Ivory Offline
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Ebony and Ivory  Offline
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Minnesota
I was giving a very, very long 45 minute lesson to a 4th grade boy. He was bouncing all over the place and talking very loud. Every time he finished his piece, he stood up and walked around. He actually FELL off the bench today, that is how squirmy he is (every time!).

I was just getting ready to lose my mind when I said for the billionth time "Jimmy*, PLEASE sit still at the piano!". This time he was swinging his legs and feet in giant circles that were actually so big that he was kicking me!

He answered me with: "but my feet are just so happy today!" and smiled a gargantuan smile at me.

Okay fine! You win, you happy, happy boy!! smile smile


It is better to be kind than to be right.

Professional private piano teacher since 1994.
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#1278187 - 09/30/09 07:27 PM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: Ebony and Ivory]  
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Morodiene Offline
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Morodiene  Offline
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Boynton Beach, FL
LOL how cute! Although it sounds like a 45 minute lessons might be too long for Jimmy. Do you have him dance and sing to his music before playing it? Getting him off the bench frequently will probably help him use up some energy, and then when he sits, insist on him being still and relaxed.


private piano/voice teacher FT

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#1278199 - 09/30/09 07:52 PM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: Morodiene]  
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Ebony and Ivory Offline
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Ebony and Ivory  Offline
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Minnesota
It is hard to be serious with this guy, he's just a bundle of energy. We do a lot of energetic things before and during his lesson. I am still working on getting him to not talk while he's playing, not just "oops" and things like that, but all kinds of random talking! After we master that we will work on "sit still". Baby steps, lol. He's a recent transfer from an apparently VERY laid back teacher smile


It is better to be kind than to be right.

Professional private piano teacher since 1994.
#1278218 - 09/30/09 08:35 PM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: Ebony and Ivory]  
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 133
PianoKitty Offline
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PianoKitty  Offline
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Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 133
US
LOL, that's cute (his words, not his kicking!). I have a very...energetic...student like that too. The talking is out of control! It takes us forever to get through his lesson book because he is always talking, usually about the most random things.

How long has your student been playing piano? 45 minutes seems like a long time for a 4th-grader, unless he's an intermediate or advanced student.


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#1278247 - 09/30/09 09:33 PM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: PianoKitty]  
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Morodiene Offline
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Morodiene  Offline
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Boynton Beach, FL
I must say, that does seem like pretty immature behavior for a 4th grader. Is he ADHD?


private piano/voice teacher FT

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#1278268 - 09/30/09 10:15 PM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: Ebony and Ivory]  
Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 1,654
Barb860 Offline
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Barb860  Offline
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Joined: Apr 2009
Posts: 1,654
northern California
Originally Posted by Ebony and Ivory
I was giving a very, very long 45 minute lesson to a 4th grade boy. He was bouncing all over the place and talking very loud. Every time he finished his piece, he stood up and walked around. He actually FELL off the bench today, that is how squirmy he is (every time!).

I was just getting ready to lose my mind when I said for the billionth time "Jimmy*, PLEASE sit still at the piano!". This time he was swinging his legs and feet in giant circles that were actually so big that he was kicking me!

He answered me with: "but my feet are just so happy today!" and smiled a gargantuan smile at me.

Okay fine! You win, you happy, happy boy!! smile smile


Ask Jimmy and his mom if he is eating sugar right before his lessons. Students come to lessons often right after school, and sometimes the after school snacks are cookies, candy, sugar sugar sugar and then we get 'em!
One of my young students actually drank Starbucks caffeine mochas before lessons and she is 12. I talked to the mom and dad about this and now she drinks water and is not shaking and bouncing off the bench.


Piano Teacher
#1278274 - 09/30/09 10:32 PM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: Barb860]  
Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 67
abcdefg Offline
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abcdefg  Offline
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Joined: Aug 2009
Posts: 67
midwest
I had a 6 year old that bounced off the bench once. She was just so excited that she just sort of scooted off at the end.

Something I have tried with my talkative students is no matter what they say I repeat what I want them to do. So if they are talking about something they did over the weekend and I want them to play Pumpkin Boogie I just keep repeating it is time to play Pumpkin Boogie. For example--Have you seen this movie yet? "It is time to play Pumpkin Boogie" You really should see this movie it is great? "It is time to play Pumpkin Boogie" After the movie we all had ice cream. "It is time to play Pumpkin Boogie".

Don't change your tone of voice. Don't show any anger or frustration. Just keep repeating what you want the student to do.

On the other hand sometimes the student has come straight from school to my house for their lesson and they have something exciting to tell me. I do spend time listening and talking to the students too.

#1278291 - 09/30/09 11:05 PM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: abcdefg]  
Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 18,138
Monica K. Offline

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Monica K.  Offline

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Joined: Aug 2005
Posts: 18,138
Lexington, Kentucky
Sounds like a cute kid. smile And I'd infinitely prefer unbounded enthusiasm in the classroom than sullen apathy. thumb



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#1278298 - 09/30/09 11:22 PM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: Monica K.]  
Joined: Jun 2009
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Minniemay Offline
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Minniemay  Offline
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CA
All of my lessons are 45 minutes, even the 7 yr olds. You just have to keep the pace going, on and off the bench.


B.A., Piano, Piano Pegagogy, Music Ed.
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#1278482 - 10/01/09 09:16 AM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: Minniemay]  
Joined: Apr 2007
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Morodiene Offline
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Morodiene  Offline
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Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted by Minniemay
All of my lessons are 45 minutes, even the 7 yr olds. You just have to keep the pace going, on and off the bench.


And hopefully "off" is not as a result of falling! LOL! I once had a student who insisted on rocking the bench back and forth on two legs. Well, I kept telling them not to do that, and one day, sure enough, onto the floor they went. They never did that again! laugh


private piano/voice teacher FT

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#1280166 - 10/03/09 07:19 PM Re: Is it really that important? [Re: Morodiene]  
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MrsCamels Offline
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Los Angeles
sounds like a handfull - what fun though
helps to balance out those overly methodical (not methodist - hehe) types.


Teaching since 2004
Private studio owner since 2008
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