Friday, November 30, 2007

From Teacher to Teacher

There are ways to keep music joyful for your students... and that is to keep it joyful for you. The book Creativity, by Mihaly Csikszentimihalyi writes a section which defines "enjoyment" as an "experience called flow... an almost automatic, effortless, yet highly focused state of consciousness." We can can put Csikszentimihalyi's ideas to use by showing our students ways to set small goals for their every day practice as well as clearly explaining what is expected each week for technique and new and old repertoire. Its important to let students see your honest reaction to their playing, singing, etc. It helps them to improve, but should be done right away while the moment is fresh, so problems are understood and praise is appreciated.

I stopped teaching a few months before I had Noah and have not yet started again. I plan to begin again soon. After teaching piano for twelve years and voice for five, I tried to put Csikszentimihalyi's ideas into practice and let me tell you it pays off. Constructive criticism is very useful as well. Done in an encouraging manner it can be very much appreciated for the true music lover.

When a teacher keeps the joy in every lesson, every critique, every practice... the joy is transferred to the student.


James Wilder said...

Can you provide a phonetic spelling of that guy's name? Wow...


Dr. Fred Scsdjhskjehreiuydsjdshdhd

Jana Allard said...

Although my mom never had any music or voice training, she was a great critic. I owe my talent to her criticism. An effective coach always knows how to critique and draw the best out of their trainee.

Melissa said...

Hey, I just ran across your blog. I love the pictures of Noah. He is just a doll. We miss you, especially since we are getting ready to put the girls in piano lessons, but know that God is doing big things in your life. Hope you have a great Holiday season. The Reighards

Music Eloquence said...

James (or Dr. Fred),
Mikhail (Mike) Chicksentmihail

Jana, what a treasure you had growing up with a mom like yours. Not only an effective coach and critic, she makes everything fun. (I loved your blog honoring your mother's birthday.)

Melissa, I'm so glad you are putting your girls in piano lessons. Not many parents go all the way with it because its work for them too. Just remember they will look back one day and thank you from the bottom of their hearts.
By the way, its great to hear from you. I missed you at the shower the other night.

Vonney said...

I just have to say that Noah is so stinking cute sitting on that chair, all macho man style (with no shirt on!) I just LOVE it!

Von de Leigh said...

Hahaha! Thanks Vonney.