Cultivating Ownership

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Below are some strategies from my notes from a lecture by Ed Kreitman to help parents cultivate student ownership of their instrument study:

  • Offer encouraging, focused feedback as well as general praise to encourage students to work with purpose.
  • Recognize and praise effort.
  • Make success possible.  Begin practice with the easier material, question.   Confident learners continue to keep trying.
  • Offer ways for students to self monitor work — record a piece and have student evaluate some aspect while watching the playback.
  • Positive attitude.   Make it clear that you enjoy supporting your child’s practicing.  If this is clear student will be more engaged in the process.
  • Provide models, samples and examples (listen to lots of music featuring the student’s instrument, attend lots of concerts!).
  • Take  notes at lessons so you can offer clear written and verbal directions. Students who know how to do their work well will be less apt to check out during practice than those who don’t know what to do.
  • Spend two minutes at the start of a practice.  Ask questions, show photos, play video clips.  Give a quick overview of what needs to be accomplished today.
  • Spend time setting goals.   Looking forward gives practical reasons for wanting to do the work of practice.
  • Tell your child how much you value their hard work and ability to play their instrument.  Remind them it is a source of pleasure for you to hear them play.

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