piano practice"My 6 year old daughter really loves the piano and wants to learn to play, but when I try to help her she gets very upset with me. What should I do? Help!" 

The piano mom who asked this question has fallen into a Lion's Den.  If this is you, don't feel bad, I'm the angel who can get you out. Read this article now.


"My 6 year old daughter really loves the piano and wants to learn to play, but when I try to help her she gets very upset with me. What should I do? Help!"

The piano mom who asked this question has jumped into a Lion's Den that I call the parent trap. If this is you, don't feel bad, I'm the angel who can help you out. But first, let me explain how this trap works.

When parents move out of the parental role and into the role of piano teacher, young children can become confused and anxious. Why? Because, the expectations of children are that Mom and Dad will always play a specific role that protects their emotional security. Because children must have their emotional needs to feel loved and secure met before they can learn, they may refuse to allow a parent to be the piano teacher, even when they want to learn. And surprisingly, the child who really wants to play the piano may resist a parent's help even more! So, how does a parent get out of this trap?

Be supportive without being in control. From the time your child approached the age of two they have most likely been sending you the same conflicting message over and over: I need you - Let me do it myself! Get used to this because it doesn't really go away when kids get older. To deal with this parents get two choices. They get to be in charge, or they get to be in control. But parents can't do both, they have to make a choice. Now you might be thinking this is some kind of a joke. These choices are the same. Not so - they are very different.

Being in control requires parents to make all choices for children without their participation in the decision, such as when to practice, what songs to learn, and how fast they should progress. The problem here is this ignores children's need for independence. To gain control, students may actively resist practicing at the appointed time and become angry, or become very passive, claiming they are just unable to learn new skills.

Being in charge recognizes children's needs for independence but provides needed support and guidance. It allows children to make choices among options you identify for them, which lets them do it themselves while still receiving needed protection. To stay out of the Lion's Den, enroll your child in piano lessons with an instructor who follows an authoritative teaching model and continue this model at home.

Authoritative Model Teaches Ownership and Responsibility


  • Parent/Teacher is in charge of setting appropriate consequences for their child's behaviors. Child is given choices to make reasonable decisions within protected limits where they can learn from their mistakes.
  • Child learns to take initiative and trusts their ability to make intelligent decisions and to act responsibly.
  • Child learns to be assertive and can ask adults for information and guidance, but accepts ownership and responsibility for their decisions.


How can parents get out of the Lion's Den and support their young in piano at home?

Jump Out!

The easiest way to jump out of the parent trap is to reverse roles. For example, after your child comes home from piano lessons, ask them to teach you what they've learned, because you want to learn it too! This lets your child be in control as they share their special piano knowledge with you. Kids can't resist this. It's just so much fun to be the teacher, and children love to reverse roles! Your young teacher will probably even correct your playing, and tell you that you're doing it all wrong, especially if you play their song perfectly! So, be wiling to make a few silly mistakes that your little teacher can have fun correcting. Just don't get defensive. I can guarantee you'll get a lot of mileage out of this strategy that keeps piano moms and dads from falling into the lion's den!

To learn the best way to share the gift of music with children visit Amazon.com for my Piano Adventure Stories for Children These exciting Piano Adventure stores for children ages 5 to 11 feature the loveable characters, Mrs. Treble Beary and her passionate, new piano student, Albeart Littlebud. Children love following along with Albeart to Mrs. Treble Beary's piano studio in Musical Acres Forest. Here they learn what piano lessons are all about in a fun way that kids readily understand and appreciate! Piano students laugh and giggle while reading "Little Bear's Musical Garden" and "Little Bear's Piano Goals."

For a wealth of f'ree information and piano music online visit Piano Adventure Bears Music Education Resources Don't Wait to Share the Gift of Music!

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Cynthia_VanLandingham

Note:  The articles on this site may contain referral links to sites such as Amazon and other online retailers.  The small amount of income received from these links has helped keep MusicEdMagic.com up and running for over ten years now.  Thank you for your support!