Page 1 of 2 1 2 >
Topic Options
#32807 - 08/25/05 11:41 AM adult/child differences
unreal Offline
Mainstay Member

Registered: 06/23/03
Posts: 945
Loc: CA
This morning I agreed to start a beginner student who is the dad of two kids who study with another teacher (a friend, who I'll chat with later). He said his kids' teacher does not teach adults, and he wondered what could be the difference, since they're all beginners. I know there's a difference in the way I teach depending on age, but I'm having a bit of difficulty sorting out the specifics in my mind. What do you all see as the differences?

Top
#32808 - 08/25/05 12:08 PM Re: adult/child differences
Jennifer Online   content
Star Member

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 1403
Loc: AZ
Well, speaking from adult teaching experience... a couple things I can think of would be that adults tend to be harder on themselves. I'm always amazed at that but they really do.

Adults also tend to cancel more often for various reasons. (Work, didn't practice so embarrassed to come, family stuff, etc...)

And it may come down to that she's just not very comfortable teaching adults. It's not for everyone.
_________________________
www.FPSResources.wordpress.com
Fun Yearly Incentive Programs and Workshops

Top
#32809 - 08/25/05 01:00 PM Re: adult/child differences
jaydub2 Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 250
Loc: WA
  • Some of my adults get discouraged when they don't sound "good" right away
  • Extreme muscle tension
  • Difficulty in relaxing wrists and fingers
  • Cancel lessons due to busy schedule/lack of practice
  • Very nervous & critical of self
  • Learn about half-speed of children
  • Difficulty playing quickly (due to the muscle tension)

I enjoy teaching my adult students...but it's a whole different ball game! Especially adults with out any previous experience.

Top
#32810 - 08/25/05 02:04 PM Re: adult/child differences
xstitch4me Offline
Star Member

Registered: 08/15/04
Posts: 2167
Loc: Idaho
My experience is quite different. My adults have learned quite a bit faster than younger students. They get very excited as they learn each new thing and they can learn more than one concept at a time. I have only had one time that one of them canceled due to something else. The only thing is their fear to perform. I have really enjoyed teaching adults but it is quite a bit different than kids.

Top
#32811 - 08/26/05 12:07 AM Re: adult/child differences
mirlou Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 03/28/05
Posts: 181
Loc: The Netherlands
What I don't like about teaching adults: some of them are not willing to do what is necessary. They had lessons as a kid and come in the first lesson with me, saying they don't want to do scales anymore, or don't like sonatinas, only want to play slow romantic pieces etc.

I got a lot of adult students from a fellow teacher who quit teaching, who are playing far above their actual level and don't want to 'learn', just to play these pieces that are too difficult. They think this is more 'interesting' and are happy just playing some of the right notes in a slow tempo.. sigh...

This morning one of them tried to play a Haydn sonata and when I wanted to start telling what he needed to work on he told me according to him the piece was finished and he was going to play a new one... Don't get why he's taking lessons.

Kids, no matter their abiltity or talent, seem to be always progressing. I like teaching kids a thousand times more.

Top
#32812 - 08/26/05 05:34 AM Re: adult/child differences
jaydub2 Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 01/29/04
Posts: 250
Loc: WA
A friend of mine shared this philosophy with me day before yesterday.

I don't teach adults. I listen to them. After they play a piece we talk about it. But I really don't feel I am their "teacher"

that's a pretty good way to look at it. yes? no?

Top
#32813 - 08/26/05 06:18 AM Re: adult/child differences
Ginger Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 06/08/04
Posts: 277
Loc: Indianapolis, Indiana
My first thought about the difference between the two would be simply the way I talk. For an adult I feel like I'm talking "normal" if you will. With children you have to word sentances differently for them to understand, Or even go about a completely different approach to teaching a certain concept.

Top
#32814 - 08/29/05 06:02 AM Re: adult/child differences
Christina Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 09/10/04
Posts: 402
Loc: Canada
i know what you mean about the way we talk to adult students. maybe this is me being self-critical, but i find sometimes i over explain to adults. i think i have it in my head that because they are adults, they understand, so i explain things way more detailed than i should. then i get the blank look...

as far as expectations go, i find they are so critical about their own playing, i'm maybe not as critical about it. depends on what they're working on, though. i have one adult student who took lessons for a long time when she was younger. she's about a grade 5 RCM level. she's quite good, except for certain rhythmic problems (shudder), but wants to learn for her own enjoyment. i don't want to be too critical of her playing, but i guide her on what she can do to make it better. it's up to her whether she corrects it. she usually makes a very strong effort. she also won't cut her nails, so she can't play with curved fingers, so how far do i push that?

another student i had a few years ago, wanted to do exams, so i put her through for her grade 1 RCM exam. i didn't mind being critical of her playing because i had to and she also wanted me to.
_________________________
"Laughter is the shortest distance between two friends" - Victor Borge

Top
#32815 - 08/29/05 07:32 AM Re: adult/child differences
Lisa Kalmar Offline
Star Member

Registered: 04/10/00
Posts: 4277
Loc: KC
Adults definitely have different technical and physical problems compared to children as mentioned above, but the biggest leap teachers need to make is usually the psychological/motivational.

Adults are more consumer-driven. They are focused more on the product than the process, which is the opposite of how most good teachers who work with children operate.

The materials you use with them, then, are extremely important and need to give them instant rewards. The PA adult method, for instance, gives them Amazing Grace in the first lesson. Adults need to have a jackpot type of musical payoff with each lesson, particularly from the first lesson onward, so the course you choose can be a real deal breaker for them.

I used to use Artistry at the Piano with adults, thinking in my Teacher Logic :rolleyes: how great it was that I was exposing them to such a "perfect" method. Unfortunately, I was younger, apparently clueless, \:o and not tuned in or listening to what they really were after, as jaydub pointed out. Then again, there just weren't any good adult courses with motivating music from the outset 15 years ago either.

For some specific PA/Faber info, including Why the Accelerated PA course is not the same as the Adult course, (don't even get me started! \:D ) go to the archives and click on Faber & Faber Materials. On page 3 there is a thread entitled Randall Faber Workshop Notes where you will find a little more of this psychological discussion. I referred this same thread to someone over the weekend from another board. Wait a minute - here's the link (forgot I can do this!):

http://pianoclub.infopop.cc/cgi-bin/ubbcgi/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=37;t=000124

Top
#32816 - 08/29/05 09:42 AM Re: adult/child differences
Christina Offline
Resident Member

Registered: 09/10/04
Posts: 402
Loc: Canada
thanks for the link, lisa. i copied and pasted all the info. i've never used the PA adult course yet as i only have 2 adult students. one is definitely NOT a beginner and the other was a beginner last sept. and a late teen, so i used the accelerated for him. now i have a *reason* for choosing one or the other.

i found it really difficult, however, to keep him interested in the song selections in the acc book. i find it hard for most teens, particularly ones who are SO into rock etc. he found the blues type arrangements "hokey" and boring, and liked only some of the classical type arrangements. those teens seem really picky sometimes and a lot of the method books (even adult) books have really outdated songs in them. like things their parents would know.
_________________________
"Laughter is the shortest distance between two friends" - Victor Borge

Top
Page 1 of 2 1 2 >


Moderator:  Archivist 
Search

Recent Posts
Top Posters (Last 30 Days)
Newest Members
mypianorotebook, Amber_Bagz, 430725, SKaR, adagiok5
2658 Registered Users
Forum Stats
2658 Members
46 Forums
5771 Topics
62996 Posts

Max Online: 1422 @ 10/03/16 05:11 PM