#6 What I’ve Learned from Teaching Music: Fun balanced with Discipline

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Getting the right balance is easy to say but not so easy to accomplish, you will probably remember the first time you tried out your first bicycle and how difficult it was to get the balance, with the wobbly handle bars and the scrapes you got on your hands and knees but eventually you get the idea, you keep working the pedals which keeps  the bike moving  forward.

I f we apply this principle about moving forward to a one hour music lesson with a small group of students, we must also keep the lesson moving with the proper balance of fun and discipline. They students would play just their favourite songs all the time but the teacher must keep the lesson progressive making sure that they are learning the requirements for their grade and that means keeping order, sometimes very firmly, if you don’t do this (like taking control of the handle bars as it were) they will try and control you. There are lots of little techniques that can be used in keeping order but I’m not going to go into that, you just have to find your own way with this one and what suites your personality.

Music lessons definitely have the edge on fun and you must use this tool by keeping the lessons serious but also light hearted, while there is a lot of education involved in learning a musical instrument, the real reason why students come along is because musicians nearly always look as if they are having the time of there lives on stage so you must be passionate about what you believe in, this will make you enthusiastic which is very infectious and inspirational to the students you teach.

In the next blog I will take up the point about being educational and why this needs to be done and how to do it.

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