It’s report writing week at school. There’s nothing like writing a report on a student’s progress or lack thereof to make a girl think about her practice as a music educator.
That all sounds very formal doesn’t it? Music educator.
Music teacher. Piano teacher. Pianist. Accompanist.
I started teaching my first piano students when I was about 14 or 15. My dear piano teacher threw me some beginners that she couldn’t fit in. I had no idea what I was doing obviously. I was still a child myself. But since then there hasn’t been a year where I haven’t taught piano (and sometimes violin, viola, cello, double bass) in some capacity – whether it was privately at home, or formally employed at a school.
So those 25 years or so have given me some thoughts and feels about music. Here are a few of them.
1. Music education should be offered to every child.
2. After the initial opportunity to experience learning music, children should not be forced into music education. This is one sure way to make a lot of kids hate music.
3. It is important for parents to be invested and interested in their child’s music education.
4. It is important for parents to not be over-invested in their child’s music education.
5. Most of the time the teacher does know best.
6. Sometimes the teacher will make a mistake. Nobody is perfect.
7. Learning to love and appreciate music is far more important than striving for perfection and excellent.
8. Encouraging students to do their best is one way of helping them to learn to love and appreciate music.
9. Practice. Without it there can be no progress.
10. Progress. It leads to achievements.
11. Achievements come in all shapes and sizes. Celebrate them all.
12. Music is just as important as science, maths, technology, english, art, drama, geography, history and all the other subjects that get taught it school. Please all governments and other people with have money – fund it appropriately.
Music. Get with the program.
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