Sometimes that next lesson just seems too hard. What do you do if you get stuck?
First of all, don’t give up. Stick with it. Make sure that consistent, daily practice is happening. But before you try and tackle that next lesson again, ask yourself this question:
As you went through the previous lessons, did you take the time to master each step along the way?
One thing that can easily happen, especially with enthusiastic beginners, is that they take things too fast at the start. If you blast through lessons without mastering them, you will get to a point where you suddenly hit a wall. Without the foundational skills to move on to the next step, it will seem impossible to go on.
Build a Strong Foundation
If your child gets stuck, it might be a good idea to re-watch previous lessons. If you go back a few lessons and work forward, maybe that lesson that seemed impossible will come easily the next time around.
Another important thing to do is include finger power exercises with each practice session. These exercises help develop hand strength and coordination, and are essential for preparing your child for more challenging songs.
Reviewing old songs is another great way to prepare for upcoming lessons. The key to developing piano skills is repetition. Kids often think they’ve got it if they can play a song once without mistakes, but to really master it they need to do it again and again. This is where a parent can be a huge help to a child. Parents can make it FUN to do something again and again. Here are a couple of review game ideas:
Review Game 1: Play What the Cards Say
Write the name of each song your child has already learned to play on a separate card and put them together in one stack. Then make another set of cards and on each card write different ways to play the song, like right hand only, left hand only, hands together, C position, G position, D position, loud, quiet, and so on. Let your child draw a card from each stack and then play what the cards say.
Review Game 2: Escape
Make reviewing an old song fun with a game of escape.
Take a toy soldier or other small action figure and set it on the piano keys. Tell your child that this soldier is behind enemy lines and every time they can play a song or part of a song without making mistakes, the soldier will move one key closer to freedom. Or you could make up a different story that will be appealing to your child, like a princess trying to escape from a dragon’s cave, or a robot trying to get off an enemy space ship.
Hang in There!
Parents, hats off to you. It takes so much creativity, love, and persistence to get a child down this road of musical mastery. It’s a long road, but so rewarding if you can stay with it, even if you get stuck for a little while. If you hang in there, progress will come.