Pearl number one. The pre-lesson routine. When you arrive at your lesson, go to the bathroom and wash hands, then head up to the studio. If a lesson is in progress, enter and wait quietly on the sofa.
Do not allow the child to get out a puzzle or toy before the lesson, if we allow this, we will be taking him away from something fun to get started with the lesson. (I will temporarily be simplifying the toys I usually keep in the back for sibling lessons. After we are in a routine, I'll reintroduce some of those items.) The lesson must come first.
Do not engage in a grown up discussion about the week. (This one is for me too. . . ) The child must go to the piano first thing. Email me any thoughts or concerns you have by the evening before your lesson. Otherwise, one sentence should get us going--for example, some compliment about the main point of the last lesson like, "Cassy did a great job with her rest position this week, she kept her feet very still." Then we bow and we are off. . .
The child was focused because the teacher was focused. The faster I can get the child in my bubble the more productive our lesson will be.
If on the off chance that your four year old sits attentively with me at the piano for the full 30 minutes--I'll be glad to follow up with any questions on the phone until we can arrange a longer lesson length. That would be a successful problem.
These kids are cute. Really cute. And these parents--I really love getting to know them. I could chit chat all day. . . but. . . we have to get after it.
"I'm ready to learn now."
"I'm ready to be a patient and loving teacher."
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