Congratulations! You have joined the ranks of piano parents! You may not be standing on the sidelines yelling, but you play just as much of a role in how successful your child will be in lesson.
What do piano parents do?
Being a piano parent is a pretty awesome role!
You are the parent that:
- Cheers when your child completes a song or has a breakthrough.
- Helps your child learn time management through a practice routine.
- Supports your child as he (or she) learns how to verbally and musically express ideas, emotions, stories, etc.
- Guides your child through navigating the practice page.
- Encourages your child to ask questions when he or she is unsure.
- Steps in as the ‘student’ when your child needs to talk something out.
- Lets your child know how proud you are of them.
Notice that some of this happens during lesson. But, most of it happens during the week.
In between lessons
Piano parents play a huge role in success between lessons. Because your child’s teacher is not involved in what happens in between lessons, that responsibility falls to you and your child. The younger your child, the more that responsibility falls to you, as the parent.
Why do they forget?
My children are growing up fast, but there are still many thing they need to be reminded of. “Did you brush your teeth?” “Did you pack your lunch?”
Even if my children have been doing something on their own for years, there are times they forget.
And, anything new needs continual reminders by us, as parents, to ensure our children follow through on their responsibilities. Even though there are moments we would just like to take a break from ‘adulting’.
The short explanation for these memory lapses is that our children’s bodies and minds are going through so much growth, it can be hard to remember it all.
Thankfully the older our children get, the more responsibility we can give them. But, that does not change the fact that they still need encouragement, a listening ear, and the occasional reminder. After all, we all forget sometimes.
A Team Effort
Piano lessons are not just a relationship between student & teacher. It is a team effort between student, teacher & parent.
Piano parents play such a large part of this team effort because you:
- Have lots of experience helping your child through different stages of life
- Control, to a much great extent than anyone else, the weekly schedule
- Are the adult who supports your child during the week (the piano teacher does not have this option)
- Can be the ‘go-between’ when there is a miscommunication between your child & their teacher.
- Know your child better than anyone else
Perhaps you do not consider yourself a musical person. “I have never played piano. How am I supposed to support my child?”
Neither of my parents learnt how to play a musical instrument. And, yet they had a daughter who was determined to learn how to play piano.
Supporting my piano learning became more natural for them over time. But, there was a learning curve that they went through.
While my parents were not able to help me read the music, what I remember the most about their support was:
- Praise & comments on my hard work
- Ensuring the piano was regularly tuned so I had a great instrument to play on
- Making it possible for me to share my piano playing with others
They even one summer enrolled me in a weekly long immersive organ course. Turns out that I was not interested in pursuing organ afterward. But, I did have a much great understanding of keyboard instruments afterwards that had a positive impact on my piano playing.
Much like becoming a parent for the first time, piano parents go through the same highs & lows as they figure out how this “piano practice thing” works.
To learn how to support your child during week, click below!