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Old 02-22-2019, 10:12 AM
Captain Jim Captain Jim is offline
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Join Date: Nov 2012
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Originally Posted by rlawton View Post
That’s why I stoppped teaching piano. So many kids would show up to lessons without practicing. My wife is a second grade teacher and is very frustrated because she asks parents to practice reading with their kids and most don’t.

You might need to get creative and add a little “extrinsic motivation”. Maybe give them a practice journal that needs to be signed by their parents and offer a reward for practicing or even have weekly contests to see who can practice the most. Of course quality of practice matters greatly.
One Mother came in after school to pick up her son's homework (he was absent). I was just setting up for the guitar class (her son is in that). I asked her if he was feeling better... she shrugged her shoulders. I asked if he had been practicing guitar... "Not that I've heard."

Sad to say that there are some involved parents, but many that don't return our daughter's phone calls and have never been to a parent/teacher conference.

I suggested that they try to "practice together - you may be the next popular band!" I saw some thought about that. Not sure if any of them will do it, but mutual encouragement (and competition) could help.

Our daughter still gives homework; I have been told that many teachers don't. It is a different environment. I did tell the kids very directly that if the only time they practice is during the lesson they won't develop the muscle memory needed. There were some wide eyes when I told them that I play (practice) almost everyday. One kid is in baseball, and his coach said he could come late to their practice, when he is done with guitar. Some are involved in other activities, a couple of them seem very shy... it would be great to see them develop some guitar skills.

But, I can't make them practice. We'll see what happens with Monday's class.

On the bright side, our son-in-law is progressing nicely. Of course, he is putting in the practice time.