2017 was our 20th year online!

Welcome to the Piano World Piano Forums
Over 3 million posts about pianos, digital pianos, and all types of keyboard instruments.
Over 100,000 members from around the world.
Join the World's Largest Community of Piano Lovers (it's free)
It's Fun to Play the Piano ... Please Pass It On!

Shop our online store for music lovers
SEARCH
Piano Forums & Piano World
(ad) Piano Sight Reading
train piano sight reading with your iPhone or iPad
(ad)
Best of Piano Buyer
 Best of Piano Buyer
(ad)
Pianoteq
Steinway Spiro Layering
(ad)
Wessell Nickel & Gross
PianoForAll
Who's Online Now
66 members (Bach_ingMaddie, ando, astrotoy, c++, BachToTheFuture, Burkey, Bluesy42, 11 invisible), 1,108 guests, and 544 robots.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
(ad)
Estonia Pianos
Estonia Pianos
Previous Thread
Next Thread
Print Thread
Hop To
Page 1 of 2 1 2
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 730
500 Post Club Member
OP Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 730
Found this helpful for teachers planning a studio, questions to ask ourselves.

Posting this in case it helps others--

http://dianehidy.com/diane-hidys-piano-teaching-questionnaire/


To borrow from the other topics-- one of the questions on here to ask ourselves is

"I teach my best when: I teach my best when:
- A parent sits quietly in on their child's lesson.
-A parent actively participates in the lesson.
-The parent doesn't come into the room where the lesson happening.
-The parent stays out of it all together."

grin


~piano teacher in training~
(ad)
Piano & Music Accessories
piano accessories music gifts tuning and moving equipment
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
8000 Post Club Member
Offline
8000 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
Originally Posted by hello my name is
"I teach my best when: I teach my best when:
- A parent sits quietly in on their child's lesson.
-A parent actively participates in the lesson.
-The parent doesn't come into the room where the lesson happening.
-The parent stays out of it all together."

Well, that is a loaded question.

It depends on the parent-child dynamic. Sometimes the child is perfectly normal, but the moment Mom walks in it's like The Ogre has just arrived. cool

And sometimes parents can be extremely helpful, especially with the little ones.


Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 6,521
G
6000 Post Club Member
Offline
6000 Post Club Member
G
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 6,521
Originally Posted by AZNpiano
Originally Posted by hello my name is
"I teach my best when: I teach my best when:
- A parent sits quietly in on their child's lesson.
-A parent actively participates in the lesson.
-The parent doesn't come into the room where the lesson happening.
-The parent stays out of it all together."

Well, that is a loaded question.

It depends on the parent-child dynamic. Sometimes the child is perfectly normal, but the moment Mom walks in it's like The Ogre has just arrived. cool

And sometimes parents can be extremely helpful, especially with the little ones.

Exactly...

Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,329
C
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
C
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,329
I teach my best when the parent doesn't come into the room where the lesson is happening.

I feel constrained, and that alone changes things. How can I get the same rapore? With double the effort. I have to communicate to two very different people, the child and the parent.

But it is nice if the parent asks their child to practice every day.

With very young children, it's better to wait until they are six or seven. But that isn't going to happen while there are nutty parents wishing to rush things, and teachers needing money, and wishing to assure themselves of another student. I will never believe that long-term gains accompany early piano lessons.

Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,299
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,299
I prefer when the parents are at the lesson, at least for a few weeks, mainly because I am an almost 40yo male who teaches little girls in my basement without windows. Thankfully there are usually my own kids greeting students at the door, so that helps a lot (compared to if I lived alone, for example).

I have NEVER had issues with parents being at the lessons. Sounds weird to say that. I have had high-maintenance, annoying parents, for SURE, but that has nothing to do with them being at the lesson or not.

A lot of that questionnaire is hard to answer until you have some experience, based on my own experience teaching for a studio, on my own, before kids, after kids, as the kids age, etc. But it's a lot of good stuff to think about!

However, if you have a formal degree in Pedagogy, this should all be part of your training, providing the Pedagogy degree includes "how to manage a piano studio" at the same time as it should.


I do music stuffs
Yep, I have a YouTube channel!

Current:
1998 PETROF Model IV Chippendale
LEGO Grand Piano (IDEAS 031|21323)
YAMAHA PSR-520

Past:
2017 Charles Walter 1500 in semi-polish ebony
1991 Kawai 602-M Console in Oak
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 6,521
G
6000 Post Club Member
Offline
6000 Post Club Member
G
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 6,521
I always want parents in the lessons from the start when they are young. The younger they are, the more it helps.

You want to start students as early as they are ready. Too early is not helpful, but late looses time.

Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
8000 Post Club Member
Offline
8000 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
Originally Posted by Candywoman
With very young children, it's better to wait until they are six or seven. But that isn't going to happen while there are nutty parents wishing to rush things, and teachers needing money, and wishing to assure themselves of another student. I will never believe that long-term gains accompany early piano lessons.

Well, when you see 7-year-old kids play Bach 2-part Inventions, you might have second thoughts about what you just wrote.

I refuse to slap an arbitrary number. Some 4-year-old kids are definitely ready for piano. Some teenagers will never be ready for piano.


Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,329
C
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
C
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,329
When you listen to adult pianists play, they sometimes boast in the program that they began at the age of four or five. It doesn't mean a thing. They could have started at eight or ten and they'd be just as good at piano by adulthood. Those particular kids would have shone anyhow. And when they were four, they'd have been able to enjoy more of what is important at that age.

Now consider the loss that can happen when kids start too early. Some find it too much and quit. If they had started at a reasonable age and pace, they may have thrived.

Finally, consider the ones who slowly manage the early program of starting at five. Had they waited til they were seven, they would have made all the same gains in mere months, saving their parents money and time.

Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,299
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
Joined: Jun 2005
Posts: 1,299
My real-life experience falls in line with everything Candywoman just said, especially the part about slowly starting, likely with frustrations, but they would be in the same place, and much less frustrated, had they started a bit later.

But I am old school. Boys at 9, girls at 7, early childhood music program (such as group/classroom music) younger than that. But my extensive early childhood training in music was nearly 20 years ago already...so what do I know? smile

(That being said, I have had success with 5yo and 7yo students many times. But they sure as heck are not playing two-part Inventions. I assume we all know that isn't normal, right?)


I do music stuffs
Yep, I have a YouTube channel!

Current:
1998 PETROF Model IV Chippendale
LEGO Grand Piano (IDEAS 031|21323)
YAMAHA PSR-520

Past:
2017 Charles Walter 1500 in semi-polish ebony
1991 Kawai 602-M Console in Oak
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
8000 Post Club Member
Offline
8000 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
Well, in my experience, the late starters are the ones with frustrations--they are clearly aware that they started 3 or 4 years behind, and quite often they shudder at the idea of recitals, because kids 3 years younger than they are can play 2-part Inventions, while they are just plodding along with Piano Adventures 2A kitty music.

And, no, 2-part Inventions is not "normal" for little kids, but it's being done more and more often. And I'm being conservative! I routinely see younger kids playing bigger and bigger pieces.


Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,329
C
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
C
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,329
Seeing them play bigger and bigger pieces is better than hearing them do so.;)

The job of the piano teacher includes restoring sanity to overly anxious parents. If they want to start early, you try to dissuade them. If they insist, then you should aim for a more thorough musical education using many books at the lower levels. You might give them Russian beginner music, what have you. But to give them Bach's Two Part Inventions is unwise. The emphasis should be on sounding good, and on stimulating the child's imagination. This means the seven year old who is playing a reasonable beginner tune could win a prize over the student playing the Invention, provided they know the parameters to best improve it, or can find them on their own.

Therein lies the challenge for the teacher. To articulate to a student after a recital, during a lesson, which student impressed you the most and why can help them understand that it often isn't the one playing the most difficult piece. At each of my recitals, a different student stands out as having played the most musically.

Trying to show how a phrase can be improved (The Boatman from Leila Fletcher) illuminates to the student the essence of music. Counting pieces in different ways, such as counting the downbeats of four successive waltz measures as 1-2-3-4, can improve a child's rhythm. Or teaching them to conduct, or teaching them to sing along while playing piano.

The emphasis should not be on increasing the number of notes and their complexity. That increase happens, due to children being able to read better and simply aging, but it shouldn't be the primary focus.

Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
8000 Post Club Member
Offline
8000 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
Originally Posted by Candywoman
Seeing them play bigger and bigger pieces is better than hearing them do so.;)

The job of the piano teacher includes restoring sanity to overly anxious parents. If they want to start early, you try to dissuade them. If they insist, then you should aim for a more thorough musical education using many books at the lower levels. You might give them Russian beginner music, what have you. But to give them Bach's Two Part Inventions is unwise. The emphasis should be on sounding good, and on stimulating the child's imagination. This means the seven year old who is playing a reasonable beginner tune could win a prize over the student playing the Invention, provided they know the parameters to best improve it, or can find them on their own.

Therein lies the challenge for the teacher. To articulate to a student after a recital, during a lesson, which student impressed you the most and why can help them understand that it often isn't the one playing the most difficult piece. At each of my recitals, a different student stands out as having played the most musically.

Trying to show how a phrase can be improved (The Boatman from Leila Fletcher) illuminates to the student the essence of music. Counting pieces in different ways, such as counting the downbeats of four successive waltz measures as 1-2-3-4, can improve a child's rhythm. Or teaching them to conduct, or teaching them to sing along while playing piano.

The emphasis should not be on increasing the number of notes and their complexity. That increase happens, due to children being able to read better and simply aging, but it shouldn't be the primary focus.

So, turning it around, if a very talented 4-year-old landed on your doorstep, are you going to deprive him/her of the opportunity to play Bach 2-part Invention by age 7?

I'm all for maximizing the student's potential and individualizing each student's musical journey.


Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 6,521
G
6000 Post Club Member
Offline
6000 Post Club Member
G
Joined: Aug 2008
Posts: 6,521
Originally Posted by AZNpiano

I refuse to slap an arbitrary number. Some 4-year-old kids are definitely ready for piano. Some teenagers will never be ready for piano.

Could not agree more...

Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,329
C
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
C
Joined: Jul 2003
Posts: 1,329
I would explain to the parent that it's best to wait until the child is six years old. It's not a deprivation to wait for things.

My contention is that the child's potential is not maximized by starting so young. Whatever happened to singing, playing outside, playing in general, and all the other pursuits of four-year-old children?

If I'm totally errant, why is grade one still for children around six-year's of age? We have kindergarten before that, and play school before that. But even these are of questionable academic value. They may enhance social skills depending on how you measure that, but I don't see any reason why kids can't hold off with school until they're six years old. Would you put that talented four year old piano student in grade one at school, AZN?

Incidentally, the children who arrive for piano lessons after taking early music education courses like Yamaha, Kindermusik, etc. need to start at the very beginning anyhow.




Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
8000 Post Club Member
Offline
8000 Post Club Member
Joined: Aug 2007
Posts: 8,949
Originally Posted by Candywoman
My contention is that the child's potential is not maximized by starting so young. Whatever happened to singing, playing outside, playing in general, and all the other pursuits of four-year-old children?

Who says you can't do all of the above? Playing Beethoven Sonatas at age 8 does not mean the child can't go out and have fun.

Originally Posted by Candywoman
If I'm totally errant, why is grade one still for children around six-year's of age? We have kindergarten before that, and play school before that. But even these are of questionable academic value. They may enhance social skills depending on how you measure that, but I don't see any reason why kids can't hold off with school until they're six years old. Would you put that talented four year old piano student in grade one at school, AZN?

Well, your example doesn't prove anything. Studying piano is not the same as going to first grade. If you know enough parents who push their kids to skip first grade (for EXCELLENT reasons) as well as parents who red-shirt their kids, you'll realize that the one-size-fits-all mentality of public education is the exact antithesis of our job as private piano teachers.


Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 730
500 Post Club Member
OP Offline
500 Post Club Member
Joined: Mar 2010
Posts: 730
Originally Posted by Gary D.
Originally Posted by AZNpiano

I refuse to slap an arbitrary number. Some 4-year-old kids are definitely ready for piano. Some teenagers will never be ready for piano.

Could not agree more...


Agreed. Never say never laugh


~piano teacher in training~
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 1,019
S
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
S
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 1,019
Originally Posted by Candywoman
They may enhance social skills depending on how you measure that, but I don't see any reason why kids can't hold off with school until they're six years old.


Well because, for one thing, a significant number of children who never went to preschool or kindergarten still lack certain soft skills (in the area of communication, collaboration, empathy) in adulthood. Also, preschool is one of the most effective tools we have for the prevention of intergenerational poverty. I'm not making this up: there's good, well-designed research to back me. It is because of that kind of research that Flemish children can now no longer enter first grade unless they've been in nursery school for af least one year (parents can still decide to keep their children out of school until the age of six, but few do, and those who do are effectively ensuring their child will start first grade at seven at the earliest).

As for why first grade is for six-year-olds: public education for the masses was conceived of and launched during the industrial revolution. Much like a factory production process, it had to be efficient, as cheap as humanly possible, and easily measurable. Someone, at some point, decided that 'on average', most children are likely to be ready to learn to read and write by age six. Age is an easily measurable criterion by which to decide how to group the kids, so there you have it: everyone starts first grade at six. But I'll bet we all know (or know of) at least one child who started first grade already having learned to read outside of school, and at least one who struggled having to learn at six, 'like everyone else'. These children are often considered 'difficult to deal with' on the conveyor belt that is public education. But that's the way we've chosen, for anywhere between 100 and 200 years now (depending on where in the world you hail from), to educate pretty much everybody. The reasons for that choice have little to do with the way people learn, though, and everything to do with 'efficiency' and 'rationalisation'.

I agree with AZN: being a private piano teacher is a different animal entirely from teaching in the public school system. Since you teach one on one, and are not held accountable for the speed at which you do or do not herd your students through a fixed curriculum (except by nutty parents who insist on exams their children aren't ready for), you have extraordinary feeedom to meet everyone exactly where they are, and tailor your approach to their individual learning needs and strengths. So why, if you did indeed happen to encounter an unusually gifted four-year-old (or any four-year-old motivated to learn, for that matter), would you ever tell that child to wait until they're six, 'like everyone else'?

Mozart wrote his own music by the age of four. And he only lived to 35, so in hindsight, he had no time to lose.


Plodding through piano music at a frustratingly slow pace since 9/2012.

Standard disclaimer: I teach many things. Piano is not one of them.
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,373
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,373
Quote
Well because, for one thing, a significant number of children who never went to preschool or kindergarten still lack certain soft skills (in the area of communication, collaboration, empathy) in adulthood.

There is a significant number of children who were homeschooled for the first 8 years of "school age" who show a significantly higher level of skills in communication, collaboration, and empathy - especially empathy. Statistics can show anything you want. I have never heard of this idea of preschool / kindergarten and those qualities.
Quote
Also, preschool is one of the most effective tools we have for the prevention of intergenerational poverty.

This makes no sense whatsoever.
Quote
Age is an easily measurable criterion by which to decide how to group the kids, so there you have it: everyone starts first grade at six. But I'll bet we all know (or know of) at least one child who started first grade already having learned to read outside of school, and at least one who struggled having to learn at six, 'like everyone else'

When I taught, if a child struggled, we looked at the school records for the child's age. We used the term "summer child" to refer to the child who was almost a year younger than his or her peers, and was therefore developmentally behind. A lot of teachers will have their children start school later rather than earlier because they know of this, and its longterm effects. If you are closer to 5 while some of your peers are closer to 7, you don't know that you are struggling because of the age difference - you think you're stupid, clumsy, and backward. I don't know if you've ever had to try to give confidence to a tiny tike with wobbly handwriting, when you know she's way younger.
Quote
that Flemish children can now no longer enter first grade unless they've been in nursery school for af least one year

(horrified, dismayed, and saddened)

Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,373
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member
Joined: Dec 2007
Posts: 18,373
I imagine that if a very mature, very motivated, and perhaps "talented" young child landed on Candywoman's doorstep, she would consider taking that child. What I see her addressing above all is the trend by ambitious parents to have their children start earlier and earlier, and do "impressive" material early for bragging rights, and because that is supposed to be impressive. There is also the ignorance of not recognizing what playing well means - the playing well of simple works first - as opposed to large works with tons of notes. I cannot see any teacher here disagreeing with that. It's only because there is an argument about whether or not to ever start a young child early that this seems be thrown under the bus. Can the two things be separated, maybe?

Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 1,019
S
1000 Post Club Member
Offline
1000 Post Club Member
S
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 1,019
Originally Posted by keystring
Quote
Well because, for one thing, a significant number of children who never went to preschool or kindergarten still lack certain soft skills (in the area of communication, collaboration, empathy) in adulthood.

There is a significant number of children who were homeschooled for the first 8 years of "school age" who show a significantly higher level of skills in communication, collaboration, and empathy - especially empathy. Statistics can show anything you want. I have never heard of this idea of preschool / kindergarten and those qualities.
Quote
Also, preschool is one of the most effective tools we have for the prevention of intergenerational poverty.

This makes no sense whatsoever.
Quote
Age is an easily measurable criterion by which to decide how to group the kids, so there you have it: everyone starts first grade at six. But I'll bet we all know (or know of) at least one child who started first grade already having learned to read outside of school, and at least one who struggled having to learn at six, 'like everyone else'

When I taught, if a child struggled, we looked at the school records for the child's age. We used the term "summer child" to refer to the child who was almost a year younger than his or her peers, and was therefore developmentally behind. A lot of teachers will have their children start school later rather than earlier because they know of this, and its longterm effects. If you are closer to 5 while some of your peers are closer to 7, you don't know that you are struggling because of the age difference - you think you're stupid, clumsy, and backward. I don't know if you've ever had to try to give confidence to a tiny tike with wobbly handwriting, when you know she's way younger.
Quote
that Flemish children can now no longer enter first grade unless they've been in nursery school for af least one year

(horrified, dismayed, and saddened)


You are right on some points, wrong (AFAIK) on others. For instance: it is true that the development of soft skills doesn't *require* preschool, provided that there is a good alternative in place. In many cases, there isn't. Homeschooled children generally are not a good control group (at least not without statistical correction when comparing results), because they are disproportionately likely to grow up in highly educated, economically advantaged households.

I'd like to address this point, and other things you dispute (like the link between preschool enrollment and poverty prevention) in more detail, but right now I have no time for that (already running late for work). Later, though!

Edited to add: I never said that differentiation by age (or rather, by developmental level) can or should go in only one direction. There are those who can read before six, and there are six-year-olds, or seven-year-olds, with wobbly handwriting and low self-esteem. I was myself one of the latter. I'm just saying, based on everything I know, there's no reason to believe that every four-year-old is better off being told to wait, just like there's no reason to believe every six-year-old is equally ready for school (or piano) in every possible way. The fact that children all go to school at roughly the same age, to learn roughly the same things in roughly the same way (although good teachers try to move away from that within the autonomy they are given), is more an accident of history than anything else.


Plodding through piano music at a frustratingly slow pace since 9/2012.

Standard disclaimer: I teach many things. Piano is not one of them.
Page 1 of 2 1 2

Moderated by  Ken Knapp 

Link Copied to Clipboard
(ad)
Faust Harrison Pianos
Faust Harrison 100+ Steinway pianos
(ad)
PianoDisc

PianoDisc
(ad)
Piano Life Saver - Dampp Chaser
Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver
(ad)
Mason & Hamlin Pianos
New Topics - Multiple Forums
Distance of Grand Piano from wall
by Damien PG - 06/19/21 11:20 AM
Insomniac pianists
by Emery Wang - 06/19/21 10:56 AM
First digital piano - F-701 vs P515
by Sebeto - 06/19/21 09:52 AM
Why do great concert halls buy new?
by Ppianissimo - 06/19/21 09:35 AM
Kawai MP11SE successor thoughts
by Quatschmacher - 06/19/21 09:35 AM
Download Sheet Music
Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads
Forum Statistics
Forums42
Topics207,601
Posts3,105,132
Members101,857
Most Online15,252
Mar 21st, 2010
Please Support Our Advertisers

Faust Harrison 100+ Steinways

Dampp Chaser Piano Life Saver

 Best of Piano Buyer

PianoTeq Bechstein
Visit our online store for gifts for music lovers

Virtual Sheet Music - Classical Sheet Music Downloads



 
Help keep the forums up and running with a donation, any amount is appreciated!
Or by becoming a Subscribing member! Thank-you.
Donate   Subscribe
 
Our Piano Related Classified Ads
| Dealers | Tuners | Lessons | Movers | Restorations | Pianos For Sale | Sell Your Piano |

Advertise on Piano World
| Subscribe | Piano World | PianoSupplies.com | Advertise on Piano World |
| |Contact | Privacy | Legal | About Us | Site Map | Free Newsletter | MapleStreetMusicShop.com - Our store in Cornish Maine


© copyright 1997 - 2021 Piano World ® all rights reserved
No part of this site may be reproduced without prior written permission
Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.5