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The Real Goal of Children's Piano Lessons

The Real Goal of Children's Piano Lessons

What is the real goal of children's piano lessons? Do you have realistic expectations for your child in terms of musical talent, accomplishment and lessons? Do you want your child to be a pop star, or Leonard Bernstein or Kanye West? Or do you just want your child to enjoy playing the piano?

Parents need to think carefully before embarking on piano lessons for their children. What do you really want? Do you want to make a professional musician out of your child? If you do, you’re on the edge of child abuse. The world of music today is a brutal business in which young lives are chewed up and spit out for the benefit of a very few corporations.

No one wins, except the few music producers who churn out the violent garbage that the masses will buy. That is simply the truth, and has been for many years.

Piano Is Easy

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No More Carnegie Hall

There is, in essence, no more “Carnegie Hall” to which you may lead your child. The classical record business is gone, and classical artists do not have careers any more. They live from one month to the next, except for a very, very few superstars.

These classical superstars are in a selfish class by themselves. They return token rewards to the community while taking as much money as they can in their brief careers. When was the last time an opera star or piano virtuoso came to your kid’s school? In the old days, they did. 

So having your child be a musician can’t be your goal. No one in his right mind wishes the life of a professional musician on a child.

Imagine The Child As Adult Hobbyist

Try to see deeper into the future, envisioning your child ten or twenty years from now. Your child will be a young adult, and your goal should be to have your child, someday, be able to sit down and play music which pleases them, and which they enjoy playing. That’s it. That’s the goal, and it is hard enough to realize.

Playing music can’t be a struggle, or work, it has to be play. Yes, there will be hard work to be done, but if the child is made to hate it they will never take up the instrument themselves some day in the future. But much of conventional piano lessons work against that goal.

A Bad Piano Experience Is Forever

If lessons make your child hate the piano, the likelihood is that they will never go to a piano again. Those are the facts. What you must do is set a lower goal, and if your child exceeds it, so much the better. Thus, the real goal of childhood piano lessons is to not make the child hate piano.

Failure Is Poison

Children naturally shrink from failure. Failure is an emotional scar that children have to live with, whether they’re aware of it or not. Don’t expect them to ask for more of it. So think ahead. Imagine your child at eighteen or twenty-five, or forty. Will they pick up the piano again? Will they try?

The answer lies in the lessons they are taking right now. If those childhood lessons teach them that they can enjoy piano in their own way, at their own pace, you have a chance. If the teacher convinces them that the piano is impossible for them, they will never be convinced otherwise.

Kids Try More Than Once

I have seen countless kids turn this corner, and take up the piano again after early childhood failure. Often, I am the teacher selected to start the process again. There are a thousand reasons for failure at the piano. There are other factors besides practically insurmountable obstacles such as lack of talent.

Dyslexia, ADHD, personality, parents, school. All of these affect the outcome of the initial set of lessons. Childhood piano lessons are not the goal, they are the seed. You need to patiently water the garden for future harvest.


Piano Teaching Style

If It’s Fun For The Teacher, It’s Fun For The Kids

Piano Methods and Children’s Personalities

The Backwards Piano Method

Reverse Psychology and Children’s Piano

Help Your Child Enjoy The Piano

Ten Rules for A Pleasant Piano Teaching Atmosphere

If You’re Having Fun, You’re Not Learning

The Difference Between the Worst and Best Piano Teacher

A Piano Teacher’s Emotions

A Pleasant Piano Lesson Atmosphere

The Use of Humor in Piano Lessons

Make Use of Your Student’s Sense of Humor

The Piano Whisperer

Fitting the Piano Method to the Child

Soft Piano vs. Hard Piano

Why I Teach Piano

Advice To A Young Piano Teacher

Teaching Children's Piano

Guilt Is The Wrong Way To Buy Attention

The Piano Teacher’s Tone of Voice

Knowing When To Back Off

Piano Candy: The Case For Bribery

Why Nagging Your Child To Practice Won’t Work

How To Make Your Kids Love The Piano

Teaching Kid’s Piano Is Like Herding Cats

Repeated Victory Will Make You Invincible

Ratio of Talk To Activity in Piano Lessons

On Which Side of the Piano Do You Teach?

Setting the Mood Of Children’s Piano Lessons

Why Kids Succeed At The Piano

Child Pianists Are Like Guide Dogs

The Purpose Of The First Five Piano Lessons

The Philosophy Of Piano For Kids

How Simple Should Piano Lessons Be?

Piano Toys You Should Bring To A Lesson

Fun Kid’s Piano

Joyful Piano Lessons

The Invisible Piano Method

A Patient Piano Teacher

Make Beginning Piano Simple

The Reverse Piano Method

Nurture Your Piano Students

Against Disciplinarian Piano Teachers

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