What if my child doesn’t feel like practicing?
What would you do if your child didn’t feel like going to school? Or eating their vegetables? Brushing their teeth? Parents insist that their children do certain things because of the long-term benefits. Even if our children don’t feel like going to school, it is so important that we ensure they do.
So many adults say, “I wish I hadn’t given up the piano.” As a parent, you can help your child continue learning an instrument, confident that they will feel the rewards along the way. If you don’t encourage them to practice a little bit each day, they will easily find something to fill in the time, but will choose something with an instant reward. This is like letting them choose what they would like for dinner every night... take-away will win over stir-fry every time.
It may sound glib, but your positive attitude will have a big impact on your child. “I love hearing you play your new song!” sounds very different to “do your practice or else!” Think Mary Poppins. Just phrasing something with a pleasant, optimistic tone can make your child confidently approach their practice (and the rest of their life as well!)
Learning how to make practice times fun, how to reward your child for good practice behaviour, how to have a routine for practice, and how to encourage your child’s interest in music are skills parents can develop. Before you conclude that your child doesn’t want to learn music, make sure you have done your best to create a practice-friendly environment.