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Topic Options
#2055316 - 03/27/13 08:04 PM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Ann in Kentucky]
BrainCramp Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/09/12
Posts: 255
Loc: USA
Ann,

I'm glad to hear that the mother came to see you in person.

It sounds like she was simply ignorant of the correct etiquette/process to use when trying to do more for little Sally. I bet she wishes she had handled things differently from the start.

It's good that you left the door open to having Sally return someday in the future. After all, who knows what she thinks of all this? Ms. Taiwan may not pan out. She sounds a bit pushy, after all, doesn't she?

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#2055326 - 03/27/13 08:36 PM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Barb860]
Ann in Kentucky Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
Thanks Barb and BrainCramp. smile

Yes, I think it was pushy (unprofessional) of the other teacher to barge in.

But mainly I am happy to part with good communication, respect and good will on both sides.

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#2055461 - 03/28/13 02:32 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Barb860]
Peter K. Mose Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 1337
Loc: Toronto, Ontario
Ann, you handled this wonderfully. You were professional, the future teaching door remains open, and yet you stood up for yourself in a messy situation.

Bravo!

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#2055467 - 03/28/13 02:48 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Barb860]
AZNpiano Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5459
Loc: Orange County, CA
Ann:

It's never fun to be in this situation. I've been there before, so I know how awkward it can be. The way you handled it was excellent.

Chalk it up to clueless parents...
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

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#2055513 - 03/28/13 07:44 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: BrainCramp]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11756
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By: BrainCramp
Ann,

I'm glad to hear that the mother came to see you in person.

It sounds like she was simply ignorant of the correct etiquette/process to use when trying to do more for little Sally. I bet she wishes she had handled things differently from the start.

It's good that you left the door open to having Sally return someday in the future. After all, who knows what she thinks of all this? Ms. Taiwan may not pan out. She sounds a bit pushy, after all, doesn't she?


That is exactly what I was thinking. If only she had consulted with you to begin with and taken your recommendation not to enlist another teacher (which I'm sure you would have given) then she could have stayed with you. A pricey lesson to pay.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

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#2055528 - 03/28/13 08:52 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Peter K. Mose]
Ann in Kentucky Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
Originally Posted By: Peter K. Mose
Ann, you handled this wonderfully. You were professional, the future teaching door remains open, and yet you stood up for yourself in a messy situation.

Bravo!


smile
Thank you for your support and advice.

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#2055529 - 03/28/13 08:53 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: AZNpiano]
Ann in Kentucky Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Ann:

It's never fun to be in this situation. I've been there before, so I know how awkward it can be. The way you handled it was excellent.

Chalk it up to clueless parents...


Thank you AZN. Your advice helped me to take action.

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#2055530 - 03/28/13 08:56 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Barb860]
Ann in Kentucky Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
I'm grateful to have gone through this about the same time as Barb. And to have the comments and advice you've given here on PW. Thanks for taking the time to weigh in on it.

smile

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#2055533 - 03/28/13 09:05 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: AZNpiano]
TimR Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3190
Loc: Virginia, USA
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Ann:



Chalk it up to clueless parents...


That might be an overly harsh description, don't you think? Parents have no way of knowing two music teachers would be confusing, unless somebody has made the effort to educate them.

After all, if their child is struggling with math, they get a tutor. The tennis coach allows a swing mechanic; the football coach requires a strength trainer.

It's not an unreasonable assumption this would work in music, for those without a musical background. Of course it doesn't - but we shouldn't expect parents to understand why on their own.
_________________________
gotta go practice

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#2055542 - 03/28/13 09:27 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: TimR]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11756
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
Originally Posted By: TimR
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Ann:



Chalk it up to clueless parents...


That might be an overly harsh description, don't you think? Parents have no way of knowing two music teachers would be confusing, unless somebody has made the effort to educate them.

After all, if their child is struggling with math, they get a tutor. The tennis coach allows a swing mechanic; the football coach requires a strength trainer.

It's not an unreasonable assumption this would work in music, for those without a musical background. Of course it doesn't - but we shouldn't expect parents to understand why on their own.



Parents get tutors when they feel their child is struggling in a subject or if a teacher recommends it. They did not seek the advice of the teacher before doing this is my understanding. Teachers aren't mind-readers.
_________________________
private piano/voice teacher - full time
MTNA member
www.valeoconservatory.com
Petrof 9'2 Concert, Yamaha G3, Roland FP-7, Yamaha MOX6, Kawai MP11

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#2055543 - 03/28/13 09:30 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Barb860]
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11656
Loc: Canada
Being clueless as parent goes with the territory. That's why parents need guidance and you need to appear open enough that they are not timid about asking. It can seem "impolite" to "bother" the teacher, when I think it's safe to say that teachers want to be "bothered".

But what on earth was the other teacher thinking?

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#2055565 - 03/28/13 10:07 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: keystring]
BrainCramp Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/09/12
Posts: 255
Loc: USA
Originally Posted By: keystring

But what on earth was the other teacher thinking?


I know it's easy to see the other teacher as another professional out to poach Ann's students.

But all along I've had the nagging thought that Ms. Taiwan may not be a professional teacher at all. She may be a college music student who lives down the street. She may be Sally's Dad's co-worker.

After all, the parents have always said they hired her to give Sally help at home. They may have been quite surprised when Ms. Taiwan started to feel her oats, so to speak.

Ann, did they ever tell you her name, and if so, is she known in the local teaching community?

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#2055566 - 03/28/13 10:09 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Barb860]
childofparadise2002 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/13/04
Posts: 542
Reading from the sideline, as a parent, my feeling is that this is simply a “fit” issue. It doesn’t matter what the other teacher said or did----after all, no one here knows what the other teacher said to the family, what we know is what the mom said what the teacher said. The situation is simply that the parents felt the need to seek more help, for various reasons decided to seek the additional help on their own instead going through the first teacher, then a second teacher came on board and the family eventually went with the second teacher. This simply means that the family and the first teacher are not a good fit for each other. There could be plenty of reasons but they don’t necessarily reflect on the competence of the first teacher or the wisdom of the parents.

Little Sally is lucky to have parents who want to give her the best. With time, they will find the best arrangements for her.

I remember having a few trial lessons with a teacher for my daughter. During the lessons, the lack of chemistry between the teacher and my daughter was so startling that we didn’t hesitate at all to leave. Yet that teacher is a very reputable teacher in the area and has lots and lots of students, including many of our friends’ kids. Does our decision reflect poorly on us or on the teacher? Neither. She will find other new students who get along with her really well. We found a teacher who my daughter loves. There is no need at all to think any deeper about it.

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#2055597 - 03/28/13 10:58 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: childofparadise2002]
Barb860 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/09
Posts: 1646
Loc: northern California
I agree that it could be a "fit" issue, to suit the parents. In my situation, the parent wanted a teacher to come to their home all along and I don't provide this service. They eventually found a traveling teacher and kept the 2 of us for awhile until somebody had a problem with it, and the somebody was me at the time.
Communication was lacking in both Ann's situation and mine. Students started showing up with multiple (in my case, conflicting) assignments and then we are told that Junior has 2 teachers. Why not give the first teacher courtesy notice that they want to change teachers and then just do it?
_________________________
Piano Teacher

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#2055599 - 03/28/13 11:03 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: TimR]
Barb860 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/09
Posts: 1646
Loc: northern California
Originally Posted By: TimR
Originally Posted By: AZNpiano
Ann:



Chalk it up to clueless parents...


That might be an overly harsh description, don't you think? Parents have no way of knowing two music teachers would be confusing, unless somebody has made the effort to educate them.

After all, if their child is struggling with math, they get a tutor. The tennis coach allows a swing mechanic; the football coach requires a strength trainer.

It's not an unreasonable assumption this would work in music, for those without a musical background. Of course it doesn't - but we shouldn't expect parents to understand why on their own.



Tim, the parents I was working with thought that there would be "synergy" with having 2 teachers. What was happening was confusion and conflicting information to some degree.
_________________________
Piano Teacher

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#2055641 - 03/28/13 11:45 AM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Barb860]
childofparadise2002 Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/13/04
Posts: 542
Originally Posted By: Barb860

Communication was lacking in both Ann's situation and mine. Students started showing up with multiple (in my case, conflicting) assignments and then we are told that Junior has 2 teachers. Why not give the first teacher courtesy notice that they want to change teachers and then just do it?


Yeah. Just based on the posts here on this forum, the lack of communication seems to be pretty prevalent. Sometimes the parents should talk to the teachers and they don't; sometimes teachers should talk to parents and they don't. It's possible that some situations are especially awkward so the two parties don't want to talk. But other times it's the lack of awareness of the importance of direct communications.

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#2055655 - 03/28/13 12:09 PM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: Barb860]
TimR Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/17/04
Posts: 3190
Loc: Virginia, USA
Originally Posted By: Barb860
Tim, the parents I was working with thought that there would be "synergy" with having 2 teachers. What was happening was confusion and conflicting information to some degree.


Anybody who's studied any instrument for long has had multiple teachers, hopefully sequential, and has received contradictory instruction on some elements.

The potential problems are obvious. (there are some potential benefits as well, but unlikely to accrue to the beginner.) But these problems are obvious only for the musically experienced.

A less experienced parent would have no reason to suspect a problem. They'd therefore also be less likely to communicate with the teacher about it. Synergy doesn't seem that unreasonable; it works in many fields.
_________________________
gotta go practice

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#2055658 - 03/28/13 12:17 PM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: BrainCramp]
Ann in Kentucky Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2647
Originally Posted By: BrainCramp

Ann, did they ever tell you her name, and if so, is she known in the local teaching community?


No, I did not ask the parent. I wanted to steer clear of any criticism of the new teacher and/or parent. So I said that it would be nice for them to have the perspective of a new teacher. Then I added "and she may need the money more than I do".

Ha Ha! I said it very nicely. But that was the only hint of criticism. Let that comment fall where it may. Let them choose a teacher according to who needs the income most. LOL!

I was only allowing myself to say something positive, so these two points were all I could come up with to give encouragement. The tone of 'Don't worry dearie, your choices will work out just fine'.


Edited by Ann in Kentucky (03/28/13 12:56 PM)

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#2055660 - 03/28/13 12:41 PM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: TimR]
AZNpiano Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 08/07/07
Posts: 5459
Loc: Orange County, CA
Originally Posted By: TimR
It's not an unreasonable assumption this would work in music, for those without a musical background. Of course it doesn't - but we shouldn't expect parents to understand why on their own.

And that's why they're clueless! BTW, to me, "clueless" is not a very strong criticism. It just means that the parents don't know the right thing to do in this situation, and it does not make implications about their intelligence. I might have used such words as "dumb," "stupid," or "moronic."

This problem is tangentially related to teachers who demand students' parents to seek out "practice coaches" to monitor the students' practice sessions between lessons. I've told my advanced students to be my TA between lessons, but it would be very awkward to ask a colleague to do the same.
_________________________
Private Piano Teacher and MTAC Member

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#2055690 - 03/28/13 01:41 PM Re: Young students with 2 teachers at the same time [Re: AZNpiano]
BrainCramp Offline
Full Member

Registered: 04/09/12
Posts: 255
Loc: USA
I think Ms. Taiwan might be a college student or a piano-playing family friend because I suspect the parents were looking for someone analogous to a math tutor.

If you wanted to hire a supplemental math tutor to help your kid at home, you probably wouldn't hire a professional math teacher. You might, but more likely you'd hire a college kid.

I think that's why, when the mother visited Ann, she still wanted Sally to continue with two "teachers".

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