Debraís "Overstatements"

 

Dare to overdo everything . . .

This means dynamics, musical intent, etc.. It is easier to pull back and refine than never get there.

 

Always ask for more from the student than you think they will deliver . . .

Life is full of surprises!

 

Be a positive but realistic cheerleader. Absolute honesty with the student is a must . . .

Be careful with this one. Honesty should always be tempered with caring kindness. Let the students know when they thrill you and when they donít.

 

Seek the studentís input on a particular piece . . .

They will play it more like themselves, with a touch of their own personality

 

Provide many opportunities for the student to experiment in a safe environment before a public performance.

 

Practicing the piano and practicing the performance are two entirely different things . . ..

Stress that fact! Do it!

 

Admit it when you goof . . .

Your students will appreciate you more and realize you are human

 

Be concerned about your students as people

They do have lives apart from the music. Remember that music is itself is not the end all.

 

There are no absolutes in the teaching of music . . .

Because inevitably when you think you have found the final answer, there will be an unexpected exception.

 

Be the eternal student

The teacher who continues to study and learn will always have something to give to their students. The line between the teacher and the student is a fine one indeed!

 

Debra Richter

Associate Professor, Walla Walla College