The following video is not about teaching piano, and yet, it is about teaching piano. Some high school students, in less than 5 minutes, were tricked into believing that they were not competent enough to do an easy task. You don't have to watch the whole video to get the point, although you might find it interesting. A big part of the lesson has to do with social pressures, but it also has to do with the feeling of "I'll never succeed at this, so it isn't worth trying." Just watch.
How do you relate this video to teaching piano? Often, when I introduce a new piece to a student, I start with the hardest parts and try to offer strategies for practicing. I'm always feeling the press of our limited time, and I want the student to leave the studio feeling as though they have a game plan. Now, I'm thinking that it might be a great use of even limited time to take a moment to celebrate the parts of a new piece that are easy. "Look what you're able to do now as a result of all your hard work so far! There are parts of this piece that you can already play! There are parts that will be challenging, but we know from our study so far that your effort will pay off." I think that one of the biggest deterrents to practicing is the belief that it won't produce results. Taking opportunities to point out the positive effects of practice is always a good use of lesson time. What do you think this video can teach us about teaching piano? (hat tip: teachermum)
In other news, the Piano Studio has a new facebook page - hope you'll click "like" and join the fun!
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