There are times we want to be done with it all; work, school, exercise, and you might feel that you or your child want to be done with music lessons too. Music lessons can be one of the most rewarding investments in your life; however, part of that “rewarding” feeling comes from the push through when you want to stop. If you or your child is feeling this way, here are a few things to help offset those obstacles:
#1. Create Your Own Schedule
Part of being an independent adult is time management, scheduling what needs to be accomplished in a day. Some students respond better to practicing if they have some control over their time. The parent can help them create a list of items that need / want to be accomplished during the day and the student can then schedule when they want to do each item. Parents have to reinforce the student in following their schedule as this is a new skill. Not only does this keep the student on track, but it allows them to have a sense of responsibility which in the long run is what life is all about.
Watch this video to hear SC Music Lessons parents, Carrie and Andy, share their philosophy on practicing and supporting their children's music education!
#2. Reward System
Some families use positive reinforcement (e.g., a larger prize at the completion of each piano book) or negative reinforcement (e.g., the student pays for the lesson if they don't complete their practice goal for the week). Personally, we're hesitant to encourage using a "fun" activity (e.g., playing a video game following a lesson) as reinforcement since that communicates playing their instrument is a chore instead of something to be enjoyed!
#3. Encourage Creativity
Role Play: Have your child teach you the basics of music!
Mini-Recital: If you have friends/family coming over, have a mini-recital with 3-5 music selections. Your child can even create or design a program!
Song-Writing: Our greatest desire is that our students spend time with their instrument. Encourage your child to write music or song lyrics!
#4. Help Develop a Love of Music
The more a student is exposed to music, the more motivated they often are to engage in music. South Carolina is full of music venues --- churches, restaurants, theaters, etc. Take them out to experience the music in a professional setting! This is a chance to reignite that spark within!
Research also shows additional benefits including:
Increases Social Involvement
Gives Sense of Achievement
Makes You Smarter
Promotes Creativity & Relieves Stress
Improves Hand-Eye Coordination
Creates A Life-Long Hobby
Personal testimony from the owner, Holly Slice:
“When I was around 8 years old, I wanted to quit piano. Almost every student I have ever known has wanted to quit at some point as there are mountains, valleys, and plateaus in learning and motivation. This is a normal response for a child as they'd often rather watch TV, play video games, etc. I can't stress enough how glad my parents would not let me quit during that stage and had a vision for the future when I, as a child, did not. They treated music like any subject in school and I completed piano assignments just like math, history, etc. My life now would be drastically different without music. Music is how I express my faith, how I cope with stress, how I release creativity, how I am able to earn a living, and so much more. I'm forever grateful!”
We hope these give you some ideas for yourself and/or your child to help re-inspire the desire to play. It is in these moments that we remind ourselves why we pursue the arts!