Encourage your child not to quit outside lessons
Almost any child who takes piano, ballet or other lessons wants to quit sometimes. And parents get tired of nagging children to practice.
But experts warn parents against letting children quit so quickly.
"Once children quit, they will most likely never begin again," says child development specialist Robin Goldstein.
She suggests that parents:
- Watch your child practice. Many children are motivated by their parents' interest, praise and encouragement.
- Make the subject of the lessons a part of everyday life. If it's music, go to concerts with your child. Read books about musicians together.
- Let your child have some say. When children select their own music, they enjoy the music more. Children who say when they will practice are more committed to practicing then.
- Set up a system of rewards. The promise of a treat at the end of a week or month can get a child to start practicing.
It's important for parents to teach their children how to stick with an activity. Learning self-motivation, perseverance and discipline is good for children both in and outside of school.
Source: Robin Goldstein, "My Child Wants to Quit Piano Lessons," Washington Parent, May 1999, 5606 Knollwood Rd., Bethesda, MD 20816, 301/320-2321. Republished in The Parent Institute-January 2000, Vol. 11, No. 5