When you face something authentic - all doubts disappear...
The new school year is coming up, and parents, whose children are already quite independent, begin to look at new activities that will help them become smarter, more confident, and most importantly happier!
If you compare the current school system to that of past centuries, the current one takes the vote. In the present times, children can choose what to learn and parents can choose what their children learn through.
It's no secret that our children have rapidly matured over the past 200 years. They are more organized then their peers 200 years ago.
They demonstrate outstanding mental and physical abilities and skills, coping with difficult logical everyday tasks.
Honestly, I admire them!
But children are children. Sometimes they don't know what they want. After all, there are so many interesting things around, and they try to experience it all! But what's more important? Music, creativity or sports?
It's all important! And what's even more important is how children will learn in any of those fields. Will it be accidental, chaotic or systematic and consistent?
As a teacher with 35 years of experience, I can give some simple but useful tips that will save parents time and money when choosing activities for their kids.
1. Observe your child's everyday life.
Determine what he/she likes the most. It is simple. He/she likes to draw? Without a doubt, your child needs an Art class. Is the child mobile as the energizer bunny? Sports activity is where they can prove themselves best. Endlessly listening to music, singing or dancing? Buy your kid a musical instrument! If the kid doesn't show interest in anything in particular, it may mean that the child is either too young, or parents do not pay enough attention to the child's overall development. But that's another topic for discussion.
Remember, children grow and change, and so do their interests. If the parent blindly follows each change in their kid's interests, there will be no lasting result in anything they have started. Of course, it is foolish to insist on any activity that brings your child distress. But there has to be discipline. And the sooner the child learns to follow the rules, the easier going through adolescence will be for both parent and child.
3. Do not enroll your child in four or more different activities at once.
Don't exhaust your child! Add them gradually.
School must be the main activity. The next activity should take up no more than 5 hours a week, including all classes and training. The third activity should consume no more than 3 hours a week. The last one is any weekend activity that doesn't require additional time during the week. If all four activities require a lot of time, you should review the child's schedule and possibly remove the extra ones, even if the child isn't too happy about it. Explain to them that rest and recovery is vital in order to stay happy and healthy.
4. Take your time to choose the instructors and teachers.
Do not choose based on the principle of disposable dishware - cheap never equals good. Take recommendations from other parents. Ask them in detail how long they have been doing their activity, what they've enjoyed so far, and what they're dissatisfied with.
Make the decision yourself. Even if it sounds like a big, reputable name, sign up only if you think the option is right for you. Don't be guided by the principle and let your child grow to love it. It is better to spend a little more time looking for a suitable option than realize you've invested into a wrong institution after two months.
5. If you are interested in the option you've found, talk to the new teacher directly.
Think about the questions you would like to ask. What philosophy the teacher uses in his work, let him/her name the most important part of his/her methodology. Usually, parents ask about years of experience, but very often the young teachers are much more patient and more flexible than their experienced colleagues. So, the number of years in the field does not always reflect their true mastery.
6. Have you made a final decision to enroll your child in a class?
Perfect! But remember that the right teacher will never pressure the parent into enrolling a new student. Especially if it is a music teacher! They will allow the parents time to think and make a conscious decision. Music education is a 7-10 years long journey. You and your child become a member of the teacher's family, and vice versa.
Think about the fact that our life is like the art of photography. Whatever you focus most closely on, comes out the best!
I wish you all to find the teacher of your dreams!