Meri’s Musical Musings

The benefits of siblings taking lessons

Posted on: June 25, 2012

While many teachers don’t give a discount for teaching more than one person in the family, most commonly siblings, I do. Because of having two or more slots filled.

But this post is not on why I do.

This one is on the benefits of teaching siblings, especially siblings on the same instrument.

First, it means an easily-accessible duet partner. My husband and I teach three sets of sister pairs, one his and two of mine, one of my sister pairs (the other, the younger one only began a week ago and is not even 4 years old!) and his pair of sisters, work on duets, usually with one part slightly harder than the other in the level of playing skills required.

Second, you can do mini-group lessons with siblings, for example, one student at the piano playing a technique exercise, and the others tapping the rhythm of the technique exercise.

Third, you can have the extra students tap the percussion parts that happen in a few pieces, especially for piano, particularly the Forest Drums piece in Level 1 of Piano Adventures, both the standard and Accelerated versions.

Fourth, you can play music games that require more than two players.

Fifth, the older sibling can be encouraged to be a model for practice to the younger one, to set a good example, and usually an older sibling bugging a younger one about practice is more effective than a parent!

Sixth, if an older sibling starts 3-6 months after a younger one, but gets ahead of the younger one within a few weeks, it can encourage the younger one to practice more to catch up.

Finally, an older sibling can be used as an assistant teacher for the younger students’ home practice, by drilling their notes and terms, and help them with learning their pieces.

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  • None
  • V V: Wish I had read this before I fell for their scheme ! Oh well - have posted my experience on Yelp and N49 and hoping others can avoid the pain of fal
  • clariniano: Thanks for the additional information. It was actually Yelp that deleted my reviews, because of so-called bias. I too have seen the horrible technique
  • No Thanks: Former Teacher at the Ontario Conservatory of Music I took lessons at the Ontario Conservatory and when I left for private lessons from another tea
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