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The three basic parties who take part in children’s music education are the child,
the teacher (or teachers) and the parents.
To best understand how the young musician will regard music lessons, we must ask:
“How should parents plan for music education of their children?”
As a rule, there are two main things to consider: the resources for music education
like choice and cost of the instrument, auxiliary materials and lessons; and secondly
the search for a good teacher. After that, the preparation for the child’s musical
training is largely complete. However, buying the instrument and paying for lessons
are not the most complex part of music education, although many parents think so
and believe that the rest is up to the teacher and the child, who is obliged to frequent
music lessons on a regular basis and do the homework. In fact, to parents, it all
seems very easy! “Did you do your homework today? Have you practiced that piece enough?
Have you learned the fingers in an etude? Come on, play the piece you had to memorize!”
Here’s the simple truth: The reasons behind one’s success in music education as well
as the loss of interest creep in absolutely imperceptibly, and often during quite
a long period of time.
First, then, let’s discuss what happens when a child loses interest.
Again, parents are the most integral and important parts of the equation when it
comes to their children’s success or loss of interest for music education. When a
child gets bored with his or her lessons, the parents, who by that point are exhausted
by battles with the child to practice and often feel financially pinched from the
costs of the instrument and the lessons, must then face the difficult decision of
whether to terminate the lessons.
We often talk to parents and teachers and ask them what they considered to be the
prime reason behind the child’s loss of appetite for music education. Can you guess
who a whopping 80 percent considered to be at fault? The child! It was he/she who
did not want to continue the education!
What’s more important is that after terminating the lessons, very few parents asked
themselves why their child lost interest. Let’s look the perspective of each participant
in this scenario:
The child. He is happy! His “tortures” have finally ended. He no longer has to hear
unpleasant things about his careless attitude and outlook for music education. No
one will ever force him to learn music against his will! Now he is free from tiresome
lessons and can spend time doing things he likes!
The teacher. Not every teacher, especially not those who often lose students, will
search for the real reasons behind a child’s loss of interest in music lessons. It
is easier for some teachers to accuse or blame the student than to admit to their
In this case, what does the teacher do? He quickly forgets about former students
and places an ad to get new ones – he has to earn a living. It’s just a job.
Parents. Believe it or not, but I think that when the child cares nothing for music
education and quits the training, the parents suffer the most – not only because
they have invested in this venture materially, but because along with the termination
of music education they must part with their own dreams, hopes, and an opportunity
to discover and develop their child’s true talent that might not have been obvious.
Now, when the child quits music lessons, he can quickly redirect his attention to
new interests. The teacher, who has lost the student, can compensate for his loss
by finding a replacement. But the parents do suffer the most – they can not “move
on” – they can not replace own child with another!
Therefore, to avoid this problem before it hits home, I strongly believe parents
should prepare for music education of their child ahead of time. They should knowbeforehand what awaits them in the future, and should be ready for possible hardships.