I have this same scenario with many students - all different ages. I don't believe it has anything to do with learning disabilities or with the materials we're giving them. I have used flashcards for many students, it works somewhat, but for many it does nothing at all. I think is has to do with focus. These students are simply not focused on learning their piano lesson each week. They are probably over-scheduled with activities and parents probably barely check their assignment, if ever. It's as though they believe they can come for a single lesson each week and learn piano by osmosis. I try to let them know that they should be coming back each week with their weekly assignment completed, practiced, and ready to play. They should be ready to move on to the next assignment. But many students spend 1-3 weeks on a simple concept piece, and even then may not have it accomplished. In reality, if the student does not go home with the intention of reviewing, practicing, thinking, listening, or if their home situation is such that they cannot spend the time on their lessons, they will most likely not progress well. JMHO from years of teaching such students.

Having said that much, I will state that I am currently on a mission to get kids to know their notes by memory. They have all memorized the treble clef line notes, they are currently working on bass clef line notes. They all did in in one-two weeks. Now, getting them to apply that knowledge to the notes in assigned pieces is the next challenge. It's just another way to reinforce note-reading. Having a studio-wide focus shakes things up a bit and motivates most of the students. The trick is to apply it well and make it stick. Not easy.


Edited by Lilla (02/21/14 03:29 PM)