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Old Yesterday, 01:21 PM
 
167 posts, read 80,053 times
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Our 10 year old daughter has been taking piano lessons since 2nd grade (currently in 5th grade). Her former teacher who she had connected with moved over the summer and we let her take a semester off to focus on sports. We've found a new teacher but she's giving us a lot of pushback about restarting piano.

We had the first lesson with the new teacher yesterday and she cried all the way home. She said the teacher was fine, she just didn't want to take piano any more and begged us not to make her continue. We've gone through phases before where she gets discouraged and whines about it, but this was different. For whatever reason, she genuinely seems to hate piano now and wants to be done with it.

She's a very bright kid, extremely well behaved and hardly ever gives us any trouble. She's one of those kids who does well in school without really trying, so we constantly look for ways to challenge her. She has some talent for piano and had just gotten to the point with her old teacher where the drudgery aspects were starting to come together in the form of her playing real songs by memory. I hate to see her throw that all away now.

Anyway, how hard do you push in a situation like this? Do we just say "sorry, you need to stick with this" or do we back off and hope she'll come back to it some day on her own time (which I doubt will happen)? I'm very concerned that if we force this on her she's going to develop some resentments that will manifest themselves elsewhere.

Thoughts?
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Old Yesterday, 01:44 PM
 
Location: Las Vegas
13,605 posts, read 24,608,164 times
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My parents forced me to play the piano so consequently, I hated it with a passion. A teacher suggested to them that I had some musical talent and I should explore it. My parents asked what instrument I wanted to learn and I told them the guitar, or the violin. Portable, small, and not too expensive. Reasonable. So of course they ran right out and bought a piano. After years of lessons I got to the point where I could play anything. But I never got any joy from it.

I don't think it's ever a good idea to force a child to play a musical instrument.
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Old Yesterday, 02:00 PM
 
3,813 posts, read 3,006,196 times
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What a great idea, keep forcing a kid to do something she hates instead of cultivating what she would like to do.

Way to go.
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Old Yesterday, 02:56 PM
 
Location: Dallas TX
14,614 posts, read 20,973,175 times
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It depends. Why are you having her take piano? Is she talented that you are pushing her? Or you just want her to be well rounded?

If you just are having her to take lessons to know how to play an instrument I would sit down and talk to her why she wants to quit. Is it the teacher? Is she really over it? If she is over it, let it go.

If she is very talented (I mean very) and you think she needs a push, completely different.
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Old Yesterday, 03:47 PM
 
Location: In the Pearl of the Purchase, Ky
7,106 posts, read 12,573,005 times
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I agree. Best way to get them to hate something is to force them to do it. I had to take piano lessons when I was in grade school. Hate it, but my parents asked me to at least try. When I went in 5th grade, I had a chance to learn and instrument and join the band. My parents told me it was up to me, either horn or piano. I played that cornet, not very good though lol, all the way through high school. But I wasn't force to do it so I enjoyed it.
With my boys, when anything came up, we gave them the choice of what they wanted to do. They both chose band and loved it. We even bought a good used piano. Both boys tried it for a while but didn't like it. No problem. The choice should be theirs, not yours.
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Old Yesterday, 03:52 PM
 
Location: Nantahala National Forest, NC
20,291 posts, read 4,312,031 times
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Good question.
FYI....I was forced to take piano and desperately hated it.
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Old Yesterday, 03:59 PM
 
Location: Southwest Washington State
19,916 posts, read 13,101,984 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yellowsnow View Post
My parents forced me to play the piano so consequently, I hated it with a passion. A teacher suggested to them that I had some musical talent and I should explore it. My parents asked what instrument I wanted to learn and I told them the guitar, or the violin. Portable, small, and not too expensive. Reasonable. So of course they ran right out and bought a piano. After years of lessons I got to the point where I could play anything. But I never got any joy from it.

I don't think it's ever a good idea to force a child to play a musical instrument.
Iím with you. I took lessons for years and simply did not care about it. Didnít practice, and for several years it was a waste of my motherís money.

Ask her if there is another instrument she is interested in. If not, you could later bring up joining school band or orchestra. But believe her when she says she is not interested.

Now one if my kids was super interested in piano. Believe me, when a kid is interested, you will know it.

And there are many things a kid can do these days: dance, theater, sports, scouting, crafting. Let her try the things she is interested in.
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Old Yesterday, 05:07 PM
 
Location: Richardson, TX
10,774 posts, read 17,070,838 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by greatblueheron View Post
Good question.
FYI....I was forced to take piano and desperately hated it.
This is my story about piano and violin.

I donít think you should force music lessons.
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Old Yesterday, 06:44 PM
 
Location: Central New Jersey
2,052 posts, read 715,230 times
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If your daughter wants to play the piano, she will do so on her own. My youngest played for years and then one day decided she didn't wanna do it again. She was getting pretty good but it is what it is.
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Old Yesterday, 07:39 PM
 
212 posts, read 119,604 times
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I am a pianist and have taught lessons for kids. I think a foundational music education is important, and that all children should be taught the basics of how to read music, but I would never advocate forcing a child to continue taking lessons that she hates.

You've given her the basics, and if she has access to a piano and can play on her own terms, you will probably find that she remains familiar enough with the instrument that she can pick up broadly where she left off in the future, if she decides to do so. But force her to continue and you will likely cause her to resent it and distance herself from it as much as possible when she is able to do so.
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