Students as Teachers
One of the coolest aspects of teaching music is that I learn so much from my students. Sometimes it’s a teaching technique from a previous teacher. My favorite is the bass (F) clef line note acronym. This is usually taught as “Good Boys Do Fine Always” – but one of my kids learned it as “Grizzly Bears Don’t Fly Airplanes.” I’ve heard other versions, but the images of bear pilots stick to me the most!
More often though, I am exposed to music I haven’t heard before – which in fact puts me on the spot to learn it myself on the spot (FUN for me!). A lot of the kids will ask me to teach a specific song (usually the latest and greatest pop tune) or maybe a game theme. So the end result is, we really learn it together. Ear training, melody construction, chord theory, and finger strategy are just a few of the possible learning outcomes that can result in 30 or 45 minutes time. The student also gets to witness another person’s (namely, me) learning process.
Piano/music lessons can be powerful moments of learning and making connections with others. -Zach