What? Something more important to a music teacher than practice? Yes! Do you know what it is? A good attitude.
Of course, I love it when students both have a good attitude and practice, but if I have to choose one, it is the good attitude. Why? Have you ever had a student who is very capable, but just wastes lesson time and will not do what he or she is instructed to do? Frustrating, right? Wouldn't you rather have a student who might not be prepared but is receptive to correction? I would! Students are very busy, and even the students who regularly practice will probably have weeks when they won't be able to practice as much as usual.
Here's a post over on my old blog on dealing with young students who don't listen. What else can you do to help your students with their attitudes? One thing is to offer some sort of incentive, like this. If your student is a child, let his or her parents know when he or she has a really great attitude in the lesson....encourage the parent to do something special with the child to celebrate! Finally, remember to thank parents who insist that their children are respectful. It's a tough job to be a good parent, and I'm sure it means a lot to hear (true) affirming words.
Does this mean that students don't need to practice? No. It just means that a good attitude and respect are more important to me as a teacher, and as a person, than practice.
How do you encourage students to have a good attitude? Please share in the comments!
Welcome to the blog! I'm Barbara, and I work as a freelance harpist and private music educator. You can read my bio here. On the blog, you can find posts about various aspects of this career path, especially teaching and crafty stuff. Thank you for stopping by! I'd love to hear from you in the comments or on social media. And don't forget to subscribe to the email list for updates!
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