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Balencing Act: The Art of Pleasing Student and Parent

Thomas McGregor

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Published: August 15, 2014 at 4:49 AM [UTC]

The day comes when you start a new student in your music program, having high aspirations for what the future holds. The class goes well and you are excited about how you will positively impact the lives of these young people. After the class, you meet with the mother of the newly attending music student. At this moment, there is a tight rope you find yourself on. Lean to far to either side and find yourself falling, looking for a way to reclaim balance. On one side, you have the please of the student. On the other, pleasing the mother. Both are equally important and both equally challenging to accomplish. But must we continue in this way? Or might there be another way to navigate this dual relationship ?

First, we must understand directly what each side wants. For each side want different things, in different ways, with different results.

For the student, in general cases relating to children and young adults, wants to enjoy the learning process. This has changed over the past century with altering and delivery amount of entertainment. Taking this into account, young students want to be entertained more now than ever. This also address the shrinking attention focus the current entertainment stimulates. This means that students will better take in smaller doses of information versus elongated marathons of intellectual stimulation. Their brain needs sprints of information with breaks set in entertainment. This keeps their brain periodically spike, keeping interest and focused attention.

For the parent, overall grown is of most importance. The parent wants the life of the child to be enriched in every way possible. The bottom line for the parent is giving their child a better chance at life than what they had. In this, the parent will look for every possible chance to further enrich the lives and futures of their children. Therefore, the teachers job on this side is to keep the student growing on a fronts.

By now,you may seem how we can turn this into a win-win situation and completely throw away the tight-rope entirely. The bottom line in effective modern pedagogy is ensuring that as we entertain the student in a way that perpetuates long term, multi-level personal growth. We must embed the entertainment with the skills we wish to pass on to the student. This enables growth in a way that best relates to the student. The days of long historical stories capturing the attention of children are gone. However, the days of acting out those same stories are here. In this way we can inspire both, the student and parent that anything is possible.

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