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How to be a strict piano teacher?

Be serious and make angry faces
1 (100%)
Tell her that I will leave if she doesn't listen to me
0 (0%)

Total Members Voted: 1

How to become a strict piano teacher (Read 2436 times)

Offline garnet1488

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How to become a strict piano teacher
« on: September 30, 2015, 11:35:36 PM »
I have a 5-year old girl student.  I just started teaching her and need some help.

I'm a very friendly and kind teacher so it is hard for me to be a strict teacher at the same time.
My first lesson with her went pretty well except that she was being too talkative.  After the first lesson, we had 2 lessons so far and those 2 lessons weren't good.  She was keep telling me that she is tired.  (But I think she is just bored to listen to my instruction and play piano).  She couldn't focus at all and she was playing whatever even though I was telling her not to.  She didn't listen to my instruction but just acting distracted and bored.  The parent told me that I can be strict to her but I don't know how to.  Does anyone have any ideas to make a 5-year old hyper girl to focus and make the lesson productive?

I do little games during lesson to make her little more motivated but that lasts for 3 minutes and the lesson is 30 minutes long.

HELP ME PLEASE !!!

Offline dogperson

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Re: How to become a strict piano teacher
«Reply #1 on: October 01, 2015, 12:29:43 AM »
Have the parent sit in the room during the lesson and act as the disciplinarian.  If that doesn't work, she should be dropped as a student.  There are not many 5 yos that are ready for instruction. ..and she doesn't sound like one of them

Offline keypeg

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Re: How to become a strict piano teacher
«Reply #2 on: October 01, 2015, 02:25:21 AM »
When you say "listen to my instructions", how much talking for how long does that entail?  (Following a hunch).

Offline outin

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Re: How to become a strict piano teacher
«Reply #3 on: October 01, 2015, 02:27:02 AM »
I'm not a piano teacher so this is based on what I know about pedagogy in general:
Many 5 year olds are simply too young to be forced to concentrate for 30 minutes. So the lessons should be tailored to her attention span and the teacher should find the ways to keep her interested enough to make some progress. It requires some special skill and knowledge to teach children that young. And also patience. You cannot expect her to feel comfortable, focused and understand why she should do things your way after just 3 lessons. Bright children can be the worse to teach basics sometimes because they bore really easily, question things and need right kind of stimuli to focus. Dicipline only is not the answer, unless the aim is to make them hate the piano ;)

Offline asiantraveller101

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Re: How to become a strict piano teacher
«Reply #4 on: October 05, 2015, 05:20:54 PM »
I do little games during lesson to make her little more motivated but that lasts for 3 minutes and the lesson is 30 minutes long.
Then make the entire lesson a game! Please don't expect a 5 year old kid to sit still for entire 30 minutes. You have to continue to vary your teaching: for example, 5-10 minutes of rhythm training and movements, 5 minutes of percussion playing, 5 minutes on the keyboard, 5 minutes of theory games, 5 minutes of ear training, etc. If you notice, the actual sitting down at the piano is minimal. At this age, it is more important to cultivate the love for music, than to force her to sit down, read music notes and play.
Good luck.

Offline dcstudio

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Re: How to become a strict piano teacher
«Reply #5 on: October 05, 2015, 06:25:27 PM »

she may have attention issues... there is a whole lot of things to consider with 5 year old children.  Outin is right... some of them simply cannot be forced -- they will resist in every way.

at this point... your primary focus is to spark her interest because she has to want to do this...  I have been down this road...lol.  There are many "piano prep" type things you can do with her.   Rhythms, flashcards, music games...etc.

you are being asked to teach this student piano...  not to create a prodigy...    play for her and with her on the piano...  show her how "exciting" it is to be able to play.

Offline keypeg

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Re: How to become a strict piano teacher
«Reply #6 on: October 06, 2015, 03:38:14 AM »
I see no response by the OP to any of the posts, including my question which had a reason.  Perhaps those responses are still forthcoming.

Offline dcstudio

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Re: How to become a strict piano teacher
«Reply #7 on: October 06, 2015, 04:58:34 PM »
I have a 5-year old girl student.  I just started teaching her and need some help.
  Does anyone have any ideas to make a 5-year old hyper girl to focus and make the lesson productive?

I do little games during lesson to make her little more motivated but that lasts for 3 minutes and the lesson is 30 minutes long.

HELP ME PLEASE !!!

I have also found that a planned routine that includes some physical movement can help.  In the beginning of the lesson try standing up and jumping some simple rhythms...  "quarter--quarter---half note..."  or "Ta ta ti ti ta"  whatever system you use.   This helps to get rid of some of that excess energy those little ones have.    This is productive as it places the entire body into the rhythm.   Have music playing in the background or use rhythm tracks from the keyboard.

Another thing the young ones love is changing the sounds on the keyboard...  this can make all the difference in the world.   Sometimes a nice synth sound or vibes --- is fascinating to them.   This can be a reward... play it right on the piano sound...  and you can pick the next sound we use...  again... completely productive.  

Kids love to color...  draw notes on the dry-erase board...  have her color in the quarter notes.. and leave the half and whole notes empty...   teach her to draw  a treble clef or bass clef...  these are all very productive.

Match pitches on the piano... THIS IS GREAT...  play it and have her sing the pitch back... be happy when she get's it right.

Clap rhythms and have her identify them... keep it simple.

Play major and minor chords...  and have her identify them as happy or sad.   Teach her to recognize her intervals... a P4 is "here comes the bride" -- a M6 is "my bonnie lies over the ocean" etc.   ear training is awesome.

Try to get her into a pattern of success... no matter how small..  and keep building on that.


I have been there... :)   lol.

The mean strict thing...  I just can't do it...so I don't try.   I have always been a firm believer in "you catch more flies with honey than with vinegar."  That has worked for me for 20 years.