Many parents are not musicians. Because of this some parents do not feel comfortable guiding students in their practice. So what do you do when you have no idea what to do?
Here are a few suggestions:
1. Sit in on their lessons. If you sit in the corner, undetected, you will learn a lot about what the child should be doing at home- and you will be much more comfortable helping them practice by reinforcing what the teacher is working on.
I have several parents that do work on their computer during the lessons. It is really nice because they are hearing what is going on, but the students feels like the parent is not paying attention and they defer to the teacher easily, forgetting that the parent is even there.
2. Follow a practice chart.
Many times the teacher will write out what a student should be doing during their practice. You can help your child by reading each item off the list and asking them to do it for you. You may not be exactly sure if they are doing it correctly, but you are helping them go through each step, the teacher will help with doing it the right way! Also, you are keeping them accountable to trying each item on their homework list.
3. Reward their time spent playing.
Since the initial stages of practice are simply to build a music habit into our everyday routine, reward this behavior. We will focus on the details as the students grows and progresses.
Practice is a habit built with baby steps. You do not need to know anything about music to help your child make playing music a part of their everyday lives. Do what you can, believe me- your teacher appreciates ANY help...no matter how big or small!