Why are kids quitting guitar lessons anyway?
According to several sources children from eight to seventeen years old stop their lessons before the tenth lesson! The reasons range from lack of interest to lack of time but, tons of research notes:
Parents who create a music-centric atmosphere at home, help students stay engaged with their instrument for life.
I think all children deserve the explosive, mindful-experience that John Iversen describes in his Ted Talk "Does Music Change a Child's Brain?"
Don't you? Well . . .
Here are four tools to keep them going strong!
1. Expectations matter
You understand goals, therefore you understand expectations. Spend time clarifying what your child's expections are for the next lesson. Familiarize yourself with the terminology and seek-out examples to support that information. The better you, the instructor, and your child know the expectations for the next lesson, the clearer the child's progress.
Did I mentions progress has a direct correlation with confidence and that:
Self-confidence is considered one of the most influential motivators and regulators of behavior in people's everyday lives.
Like I said, expectations matter.
2. Capture the lessons
Use your phone to insist on a video recap of the lesson or discuss the lesson with the instructor immediately afterwards. You can even sit-in on the lessons (fly on the wall, no teaching) to understand the expectations for your child.
Very little time is needed to capture the lesson and the benefit is massive!
Film the lesson on your phone. Your child will have a visual/aural support and you will have a clear example of what must happen before the next lesson. Let the instructor know, they'll probably do it for you!
Another option is to have your child teach you! Talk about camaraderie!
3. Speak up
The more you discuss your child’s guitar lesson, the more they perceive the importance of it. A daily check in is best and will promote your child's progress. Here are some ideas help start the conversation:
- Discuss their experience not 'what they did'
- Establish the expectations for the week everyday
- Praise the progress you see or hear or perceive
- Relate the joy of music whenever you feel it
4. Learn yourself
Beyond the benefits for yourself, you and your child will share the experience of learning. You may not know this but, I believe learning is the closest thing to magic I can think of; enjoy the magic together.
Of course, the studio can help with that:
Key take aways
Understand the expectations
Discuss terminology, understand the goals, the instructor is your partner
Capture the lesson
Film it, sit-in, write a recap - massive benefit
Praise the progress, discuss music, check in daily about the guitar lessons
Compliment your child's learning with your own
If you have any suggestions as a parent, teacher, or student let us know!