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The right balance between teaching and playing/studying (Read 799 times)

Offline wkmt

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The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
« on: March 06, 2020, 12:38:17 PM »
I have recently published a meditation on a topic that I believe affects us all:
"The balance between teaching and our own professional development"

I start with a description of our "dream". The dream is personified by our expectations when we come out from Uni. Our idealisation of what the rest of our lives is going to look like now that we finally have a beloved degree.

Then the confrontation with reality -or at least the reality of almost 90% of music graduates)

Finally the decision we take in maturity.

I believe this can be quite accurate but I looking forward to your replies.

Here is my material.
https://www.i-am-a-spammer.com/post/the-professional-piano-teacher-the-balance-between-performance-and-education

Offline keypeg

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #1 on: March 09, 2020, 08:19:11 PM »
I read the article.

I have worked with some excellent teachers in my more recent years.There are teachers who choose to teach, not "because they have to earn money somehow, and performing doesn't earn enough" - but because they  want to teach.  They look deeply into teaching, which is a profession, an art, and a craft in its own right.  They may be excellent performers, but they may also decide for whatever reason that public performance is not a thing that interests them.

Here is a line in the article that I am not that comfortable with:

Quote
As soon as we start taking our first piano students, we see that we are overqualified for the job.

I know how you mean it.  When it comes to interpreting advanced music with all the nuances and specialized skills and knowledge, very little of that applies.  I met one person who got out of the profession of teaching because she was tired of showing new students where to find middle C.  That's what you  mean.

But when it comes to teaching, and maybe especially establishing basic skills and habits, is it possible that you are also UNDERqualified for the job? Do you know how to teach?  What pedagogy is or isn't there?  How about the development stages of a child and how to work with that (part of my studies in teachers college). There may be a case of being both overqualitied and underqualified and maybe wrongly qualified.

The actual point - of restoring one's mojo so as to not fall into the doldrums, that is also a real concern.  Because perpetually showing middle C for years on end, teaching students who can only hear a quarter of what you can hear, and maybe couldn't care less if they were forced by parents to take lessons .... that is wearing on the psyche from all I've heard (and what I can imagine).

Offline keypeg

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #2 on: March 17, 2020, 07:30:20 PM »
Wkmt, is there a reason why you posted this in the discussion forum?  You do not seem to be interested in discussing.

Offline wkmt

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #3 on: March 20, 2020, 10:10:14 AM »
Hello Keypeg,

Thank you for your reply. I do want to discuss it. It is just that with COVID-19 I was a bit overstretched.

I had the infinite luck of being taught always by pianists. I have not been taught by professional or qualified piano teacher. That doesn´t mean I do not appreciate their expertise.

Far, on the contrary, I think they have something I lack and therefore I partnered with my colleague Gisela Paterno, who is a proper qualified "Music Teacher".

It is evident that committing time to study the devices of pedagogy translates into becoming better equipped to resolve educational challenges.

I also think that a pianist, if creative enough, if introspective and empathic in his or her approach, can fill the gap in academic pedagogical instruction and solve the educational challenge with his or her capacity to adapt to the student. I believe that reading the student, understanding the way he or she constructs each subject inside his or her head is actually as important as the academic instruction.

What do you think?

Offline keypeg

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #4 on: March 21, 2020, 01:56:05 PM »
I guess that the tone of the article gave me the impression of people who teach piano because they have to in order to make a living, rather than because teaching is their chosen profession, and they have an interest in teaching piano.  This was not about credentials such as a degree in pedagogy, but about teaching because one wants to teach.  And therefore invests oneself in this.  It is a specialized skill, and the student is at stake, especially at the formative stage.

Offline wkmt

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #5 on: March 22, 2020, 04:08:47 PM »
Hello Keypeg, I can assure you I do not need to teach to survive.

I choose to teach, nevertheless and as in any other thing in life, someone needs to reach the right balance.

Offline keypeg

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #6 on: March 22, 2020, 07:20:57 PM »
Choosing to teach, and having enough interest to learn how, is the key. We hear stories of students whose teachers are clearly only "teaching" because they have to, and do a lackluster job of it.  Therefore if you have chosen to teach, this makes all the difference.

Offline wkmt

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #7 on: March 30, 2020, 04:37:43 PM »
I believe I was destined to do it. There are plenty of story from my childhood that somehow lead me this way :)

Nevertheless, I believe that is always important to keep an eye on self-professional development so we keep ourselves freshly informed and up to date on our subject.

Offline timothy42b

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #8 on: April 02, 2020, 07:37:11 PM »
I do think that performing is part of what keeps teachers on any instrument fresh and motivated, not only to practice but to teach.

I would take issue with the implication that the only worthwhile performance is booking a classical concert.  That's not just elitist, it involves intense pressure on the performer, and produces I think a kind of individual approach to music that is counterproductive.

Let me illustrate with this quote from Blues Brother 2000:  The Elwood Blues I know once said that no pharmaceutical product could ever equal the rush you get when the band hits that groove; the people are dancin', and shoutin', and swayin'; and the house is rockin'!

Music can be a conversation fed by the energy from an audience - but not likely in the classical setting wkmt describes. 
Tim

Offline wkmt

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #9 on: April 07, 2020, 03:56:19 PM »
I do think that performing is part of what keeps teachers on any instrument fresh and motivated, not only to practice but to teach.

I would take issue with the implication that the only worthwhile performance is booking a classical concert.  That's not just elitist, it involves intense pressure on the performer, and produces I think a kind of individual approach to music that is counterproductive.

Let me illustrate with this quote from Blues Brother 2000:  The Elwood Blues I know once said that no pharmaceutical product could ever equal the rush you get when the band hits that groove; the people are dancin', and shoutin', and swayin'; and the house is rockin'!

Music can be a conversation fed by the energy from an audience - but not likely in the classical setting wkmt describes.

I'm afraid I sustain my opinion and I don't agree with your statement. Maybe a matter of multiperspective. In general, I believe that in order to teach someone to fly you should be flying ;)

Offline john30

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #10 on: April 07, 2020, 04:14:51 PM »
Any thoughts of this piano sounds? 

Offline perfect_pitch

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Re: The right balance between teaching and playing/studying
«Reply #11 on: April 08, 2020, 12:07:40 AM »
Any thoughts of this piano sounds? 

Well done for adding a video that has NOTHING AT ALL RELATED to the original content of this thread.

You're clearly fishing for views... you won't get any here on this forum.