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Originally Posted by malkin
As with everything, there's a sweet spot of just enough verbal input and just enough contextual support.


Totally agree.

Originally Posted by malkin
Of course the sweet spot will vary across individuals, because life is not boring and hardly anything is straightforward.


That, and the sweet spot will vary from day to day or week to week in any one individual, too.

Originally Posted by malkin
Some of you might remember my old signature quote from Oliver Wilde, "All things in moderation, including moderation."


I like that. smile

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Originally Posted by Lostinidlewonder
I have some students who love talking a lot and talking about the music/art experiences they have encountered as well as piano playing experiences (their own or others), we do have to watch out not to talk too much because we might not get any work done!


I've had students like this, too, and yes, deciding how much time to give them to talk about their experiences is a balancing act. For purposes of this post, though, I'm thinking about how I as a teacher can avoid excessive talking to my students. I could have worded the thread title more specifically, I realize now. smile


Originally Posted by Lostinidlewonder
if you talk too much you restrict the flow of the lesson and it can get confusing, it also takes time again to "get the ball rolling" as they say.


These are very good points, LiW.

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Perhaps think about it this way~

Talking implies that the kind of learning your student is doing is listening.
How about mix it up a bit, use the other senses? Visual and physical/sensory ..
Taste and Smell prob are out.. keke.
Find ways to make it interactive so you are not just relying on your student's ability to listen well.


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Originally Posted by hello my name is
Perhaps think about it this way~

Talking implies that the kind of learning your student is doing is listening.
How about mix it up a bit, use the other senses? Visual and physical/sensory ..
Taste and Smell prob are out.. keke.
Find ways to make it interactive so you are not just relying on your student's ability to listen well.


These are great tips. Thanks, hello my name is.

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I'm not quite sure how you'd use these visual cues. You could give a piece of paper to the student that says, "play the phrase again", but piano is all about listening. I suppose you could have a music stand at the entrance with the tip, "practice five times per week".

I've been known to move a student's finger but it's not generally effective. So what physical sensory things can you really expect. Only that the teacher plays a phrase first, perhaps.

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Originally Posted by Candywoman
I'm not quite sure how you'd use these visual cues. You could give a piece of paper to the student that says, "play the phrase again", but piano is all about listening. I suppose you could have a music stand at the entrance with the tip, "practice five times per week".

I've been known to move a student's finger but it's not generally effective. So what physical sensory things can you really expect. Only that the teacher plays a phrase first, perhaps.


Yes, the teacher playing a phrase and the student echoing it is one example. When used sparingly, it can be effective. (OT, I'm not advocating learning much or all of one's music in this way, though. I'm still cleaning up the mess created by the former teacher of a transfer student of mine, a student who learned almost or entirely fully by rote for six years.) frown

One way I like for building visual skills is to have students do copywork. Some theory books (I know Piano Safari is one of them) have copywork exercises.

Copying could also be done as a wordless, interactive activity during lessons. I draw a note on my staff paper, student draws the same note on his/her staff paper. (Or student alternatively responds by placing a magnet on a magnetic staff if doing written work is a challenge.) It can help me as the teacher understand if a student is experiencing visual challenges in interpreting where notes are positioned on the staff.

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