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Stop the Music Slump this Summer!

Summer is in full swing! Here’s to loading up on popsicles, hanging out by the pool, and spending the next few weeks listening to your kids happily practice their instruments every day without complaint…

Sound too good to be true? Maybe. But you can avoid a “summer slump” and prevent a musical skills backslide without resorting to begging or outright bribery. As we progress through summer term, here’s our favorite tips for making summer practice fun and engaging…

  • Set goals! When fluctuating summer schedules make regular practice a little more difficult, new goals can help kids stay on track. Getting creative can help too, so while setting a goal to practice every day  is a great start, making summer goals a little more unique can help keep motivation high.

If your musician loves composing, encourage them to write two new songs by the end of summer. Or, let your child choose the next three pieces to learn—even if they pick a bunch of pop songs that may or may not drive you a little nuts for the next few weeks. There’s plenty of time to learn the classics, but summer is the perfect opportunity to let students focus on learning songs that really excite and motivate them.

  • Switch up the skills focus: Maybe your student spent the school year mastering technical skills or memorizing music in preparation for end-of-year recitals. Which means summer might the right season to focus on sight-reading or improving musical expression. Encourage your child to work with their teacher about choosing the right skills focus for the summer, and then support them in trying a new thing!
  • Perform, perform, perform! Just because recital season and end-of-year performances might be over for the school year doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of opportunities for your child to showcase their talents. If you’re worried about your kids experiencing a summer backslide over the summer, help them organize a special performance for friends and family at the end of the summer. Make sure to include them in the planning—  everything from choosing what treats to serve to picking which songs to perform.

Summer is also a chance to help your child discover the ways music can be used to serve the community. More free time means more time to reach out to others and find ways to connect through music. Performing at local Senior Centers or offering to play and/or accompany others at community or religious events can help your child find the meaning behind all that practice, even on days they’d rather be playing with friends.

One of the things that makes The Piano Place so special is our dedication to providing individual instruction for each of our students. We understand that keeping up with music lessons during the summer can be a challenge for students and their families, but our teachers are dedicated to helping your child avoid a summer slump while staying happy and motivated in their learning. From picking new and exciting music to finding a new skill focus, we are excited to work together to make this the best summer yet!

“Music in itself is healing. It’s an explosive expression of humanity. It’s something we are all touched by. No matter what culture we’re from, everyone loves music.”
- Billy Joel
©The Piano Place 2018
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