Sunday, January 30, 2011

Some Advice From the Teacher on How NOT to Bring Your Students to Their Lesson

There are times as a teacher when I have to wonder just what a student's parents are thinking! I'm sure other teachers all have their own stories to tell as well. It certainly keeps life in the studio interesting.

I had a student come to a lesson this past Friday in a horrible mood because he had been at a sleepover party and his father had taken him away from the party for his piano lesson. As soon as the lesson was over he'd be going back to the party. This is just about the worst set-up for a lesson that I can imagine. The child had no desire to be there, his mind was back at the party. He was completely unfocused for the entire lesson and every few minutes was asking how much time was left in the lesson. His lack of interest and focus in turn rubbed off on me and made me less patient that I should have been.

It was one of the worst lessons I've taught in a long time, but under the circumstances I can't imagine it having gone any differently. By the end of the lesson I was irritated with both the student and the parents for having brought him under those circumstances. It was unfair to me and to their son.

As I had had no idea of the situation until they showed up, I don't see how I could have prevented it from happening, and I tried to handle it to the best of my ability. Has anybody else ever dealt with a similar circumstance, and if so, how did you handle it after the fact?

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