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#1034352 - 12/10/04 09:50 AM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
tk Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/13/04
Posts: 695
Loc: Los Angeles County
As an adult re-starter (is that a word?), this topic really piqued my interest! Cindy, I am glad you felt comfortable enough to share this frustration here in the AB forum. IMHO, your post did not at all seem misplaced.

tk

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#1034353 - 12/10/04 02:14 PM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
Rodney Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/28/04
Posts: 735
Loc: Caledon ON, Canada
tk,

Well said BUT.... as an adult who NOW realizes the value that having the ability to express myself through music, I can tell you that I am angry/disappointed in my parents for not trying to motivate me (or kick my !@@). Children don't always understand the value of certain things (proper nutritian, keeping fit, academic education, and musical expression) but when they don't, it is our place as their parents to impose those things. After all, they are children and lack the neccessary experience to make all the right choices, so we make them for them. We HOPE they will make the right choice, but as parents it is our job to intercede when they don't.

Cindy,

What I didn't tell you about my son was that I also wanted him to suppliment his math skills and participate in athletics (both of which are in terrible shape in our education systems). From his perspective, he didn't understand the need for these things and was adament that he would not have it. (i.e. He and I went to war and I won)

I enrolled him in a Kumon math program and Kung-Fu training (I didn't think it was fair to others to involve him in a team sport where his attitude could bring down the others involved). Later we added Tennis and swimming lessons for a little variety.

Now he teaches at, and grades assignments for the Kumon school as a part time job to make some cash, and is going for his Kung-Fu Brown Belt in January. He thanks his mother and I all the time for MAKING him do these things as he has come to appreciate their value.

Keep trying to motivate your children any way you can, but in the end, you will have to be the adult and make the hard decisions for them if they can't do it for themselves.

BTW:

We don't use the word "practice" in our house. Practice implies work and "not fun". When my son, wife or I talk about learning a piece or rehersing for a recital, we always call it playing (i.e. play(ing) is fun and definately something we enjoy doing). I personally feel that practice should be treated as a 4 letter word and discouraged by everyone including music teachers.

Wow, I had no idea that I could be so long winded. ;-) I'll get off my soapbox now. I think it's time to get up from behind this computer and go play.

Rodney

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#1034354 - 12/10/04 02:21 PM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
Bob Muir Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/01/03
Posts: 2653
Loc: Lakewood, WA, USA
Rodney, so how do you differentiate between screwing around at the piano or just playing pieces that have already been learned, and what everyone else calls practice?

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#1034355 - 12/10/04 02:31 PM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
Cindysphinx Offline


Registered: 02/14/03
Posts: 6416
Loc: Washington D.C. Metro
TK,

That was *amazing!* You totally know 13-year-old girls! The throbbing desire to have long *red nails* is something I didn't mention, but you totally nailed it.

Ahem. So. Looks like I have to suffer in silence. Or near-silence, anyway.

TK, what did your parents *do* about your progress? Did they make you practice? If so, how? What worked and what didn't?

Rodney, I think you are onto something when you use the term "play" instead of "practice." I'd be thrilled if the kids ever sat down at the piano and just explored some favorite song they've always wanted.

As for me, the jury is still out. Last night, the 13-year-old tried to skip practice, but Mom The Rottweiler told her no way was she going to break her explicit promise to practice after "The Apprentice." So she sat down and worked out the first section of "Christmastime Is Here." Just because she likes it. It sounded great.

I need a drink. \:\)
_________________________
Vote For Cindy!!

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post...QvjrL_blog.html

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#1034356 - 12/10/04 02:40 PM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
mikhailoh Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 4288
Loc: Cincinnati
Grrr... don't give em a break Cindy.. you have inspired me to abuse my daughter similarly!

I bought a book of piano-violin Christmas songs and am going to make her play violin while I tickle the ivories.. she'll hate it.. at first.
_________________________
Michael

====

He is so solemn, detached and uninvolved he makes Mr. Spock look like Hunter S. Thompson at closing time.'

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#1034357 - 12/10/04 02:42 PM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
Cindysphinx Offline


Registered: 02/14/03
Posts: 6416
Loc: Washington D.C. Metro
Yes, but have you actually, erm, abused her yet, Michael?

Report back when you do. I could use some inspiration myself right about now.

Hey, how come these girls never cook dinner, anyway?

Cindy -- off to see what can be tossed together for dinner, again
_________________________
Vote For Cindy!!

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post...QvjrL_blog.html

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#1034358 - 12/10/04 07:26 PM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
tk Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/13/04
Posts: 695
Loc: Los Angeles County
Originally posted by Rodney:[/b]
 Quote:
tk,
Well said BUT.... as an adult who NOW realizes the value that having the ability to express myself through music, I can tell you that I am angry/disappointed in my parents for not trying to motivate me (or kick my !@@). Children don't always understand the value of certain things (proper nutritian, keeping fit, academic education, and musical expression) but when they don't, it is our place as their parents to impose those things. After all, they are children and lack the neccessary experience to make all the right choices, so we make them for them. We HOPE they will make the right choice, but as parents it is our job to intercede when they don't.
I certainly appreciate what you are saying, Rodney. I absolutely regret quitting at 17. I wish I hadn't. Of course, now my mom gets to have the great satisfaction of saying, "I told you so!" To her credit, though, she has not actually said this (but, I know she's thinking it! \:\) ).

We see so clearly looking back in hindsight, but I can honestly say that if I felt pressured or nagged by my parents, there would have been a much greater likelihood of me quitting out of spite and stubborness, and possibly never wanting to get back to it. Even if they know deep down that their parents are right, I would expect that most kids do not want to hear or even sense their parents intimating "I know what's best for you."

I am not angry or disappointed in my parents at all. I am only disappointed in myself (though at time I wasn't). It was my lesson to learn, and my eventual regret. I actually appreciate that my parents didn't push me and let me make the decision. Of course, I was 17, not 13. Regardless, I really respect them for having the courage to let their child make a mistake they knew she would probably regret. But, just like I am grateful that they let me make the call, I am very sure that there are many, many others out there who are just as grateful their parents did not let them quit...

 Quote:
Wow, I had no idea that I could be so long winded.
I don't think so at all. After looking at some of my previous posts, you are incredibly succinct by comparison! \:\)

BTW, I, too, think you are onto something there about the whole not calling it "practice" thing. I agree, using that word really does make you think of drudgery...

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#1034359 - 12/10/04 07:57 PM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
tk Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/13/04
Posts: 695
Loc: Los Angeles County
Oops! Forgot to reply to Cindy!

 Quote:
The throbbing desire to have long *red nails* is something I didn't mention, but you totally nailed it.
"Nailed it?"--no pun intended, right? ;\) You know what's funny? It took about a year after I quit for me to realize that I couldn't STAND having long nails! They would dig into my palms when I was writing, they would break, they would snag things, etc. I have been keeping my nails short for the past dozen plus years! And, as for painting them? Oh, brother! In the past dozen years, there have probably been just as many times when I actually painted my nails!

 Quote:
TK, what did your parents *do* about your progress? Did they make you practice? If so, how? What worked and what didn't?
If my mom nagged me to practice, I would resent it and then stubbornly NOT practice. Practicing had to seem like MY idea... So, I would rarely get right to it if my mom suggested it. Instead, I would wait till I felt enough time had elapsed so that it seemed like I was doing it of my own accord. Very silly, I know, but I was a TEENager!

What actually worked the best for me was when I could sense my mom's quiet disappointment. She wouldn't say anything and wouldn't intentionally lay a guilt trip, but I knew she was disappointed and that always got me! But, it had to be "quiet" disappointment--ie., not verbally expressed. Once it was verbally expressed, it became a nag, which would bring on the resentment.

Another thing that would work was positive reinforcement--e.g., offering a sincere compliment on my playing, saying she really enjoyed a certain piece, acknowledging the times I did practice without being told, etc. Also, when my dad would say, "That sounded really nice"... I was always secretly pleased with myself.

Rodney suggested to keep trying to motivate your children any way you can. One of the best ways I can think of is to really just enjoy your own playing and continue expressing your passion for it. My sense is that they will observe your love for it and see how excited and alive you are when you are playing, and as long as they don't get the feeling that you are pushing it on them, at least one of them will start self-motivating.

As for the dinner thing... Well, that is something my parents DID force on us! There were four of us kids, and each of us had to cook dinner once a week! I started at the age of 10 or 11. Of course, my parents had to put up with a lot of spaghetti! \:\)

Hang in there, Cindy!

Cheers from the yet-again long-winded tk!

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#1034360 - 12/10/04 08:12 PM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
Cindysphinx Offline


Registered: 02/14/03
Posts: 6416
Loc: Washington D.C. Metro
 Quote:
What actually worked the best for me was when I could sense my mom's quiet disappointment.
Ahhhhh! Quiet disappointment. I must use this one a bit more. The "quiet" part will be a bit of a challenge. \:\)

As for painting my nails . . . there must be a bottle of nail polish around here somewhere!

Cindy -- amused that everyone else must think TK & I are totally insane!
_________________________
Vote For Cindy!!

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post...QvjrL_blog.html

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#1034361 - 12/10/04 08:46 PM Re: I Laid Down The Law, And The Law Won
Nina Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/13/01
Posts: 6467
Loc: Phoenix, AZ
The only reason why my kids do anything of use whatsoever is that we are horrible, evil, cruel and abusive parents who monitor our kids' screen time.

I'm absolutely serious. If there's no TV or computers (OK, I know I'm on thin ice now...), then boredom will get kids to do amazing things. Even play music, cook something, plant stuff in the yard.

Our 7th grader gets 1 hr of screen time a day, period. It's usually been TV but lately she spends most of it doing IM. Homework is the exception to the "no computer" rule, but she is in a special homework account with very limited access to the outside world. Yes, I'm mean, my daughter will tell you so.

My son earns screen time by doing his homework. He gets 1/2 hour of TV time and 1/2 hour of computer time (if homework is finished).

We also have no screen Saturdays, and it's great. I highly recommend it. Cold turkey is way, way easier than having to hear the "please, Mom, just 5 minutes...." whine incessantly.

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