There’s one question that I’ve been forgetting to ask my piano students lately. But I started asking it this week and it’s made a world of difference.
I realized that I spent a lot of my time teaching to my piano students… and not enough time learning with my piano student. I was forgetting to ask “How will you remember this?” or “How should you remind yourself?”. I was just telling them how!
I write all over my students’ books, but the markings I write on their books are markings that make sense to me. What works for me might not always work for my student.
All of my hints and reminders and memory tricks mean nothing if they don’t speak to that particular child. If your piano student is the one actually creating the memory tricks… they are, of course, more apt to remember!
Ask These Questions… And Delight in the Answers!
Ask these questions and you may just be surprised at the answers! By using the answers you get to guide your teaching, many of the same-old same-old things that your piano students continually forget to do may just melt away…
“What should we write on your page to help you remember?”
“Can you show me where we should put a reminder?”
“What would make you notice this part in your piece?”
“What do you think of when you see this?”
Imagination is a good thing!
I had to laugh at some of the answers that my students came up with. Me: “What would make you notice this part in your piece?” Ben: A giant bat!
But that giant bat we drew meant he never ever forgot that F#… apparently it was much more effective than anything I had written or circled in his book. Who knows what imaginative ideas your students will come up with that will change the way you teach… just by asking a simple question!