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#2310148 - 08/02/14 09:04 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: wimpiano]
BrianDX Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/14/14
Posts: 711
Loc: Lewes DE
Originally Posted By: wimpiano
I am just hoping that it takes many years before my teacher resigns.. He's well in his sixties so I am afraid that sometime in the coming years he will quit and I would really really really regret that.

I worry about the exact same thing...
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#2310157 - 08/02/14 09:22 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: fizikisto]
jdw Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/04/11
Posts: 982
Loc: Philadelphia, PA
Originally Posted By: fizikisto
I think that fire is an entirely appropriate descriptor of what was done. If you hired a plumber to install a new shower and they behaved inappropriately, I don't think anyone would blink if you said, "Unfortunately, I had to fire my plumber; he was incompetent!" A piano teacher might be an independent contractor, but you're still hiring them to provide a service to you. If for whatever reason they are unable to meet your needs, you fire them and (one hopes) find/hire a different teacher better able to meet your needs.


Would you say you had "fired" your doctor if you decided to go to a different one? I don't see the value of using a term that tends to imply subordination here.
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#2310161 - 08/02/14 09:30 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
DancerJ Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/22/14
Posts: 42
We, ballroom dancers, use the word, "fire," when we terminate our relationship with our coaches/teachers all the time. I think the relationship between a piano teacher and a student is similar to the one between a dance teacher and a student.


Edited by DancerJ (08/02/14 09:31 AM)

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#2310165 - 08/02/14 09:49 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: DancerJ]
BrianDX Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/14/14
Posts: 711
Loc: Lewes DE
IMHO I couldn't care less if the word "fire", "terminate", whatever is used to describe when a teacher and student part ways.

What DOES concern me are some of the reasons WHY (both on the student and teacher side of things) this separation occurs.

I'm especially troubled by the implications described above where a teacher parts ways with a student because they, for the use of a better word, "stunk".
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2013 Yamaha C2X | 2001 Yamaha M500-F .
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#2310166 - 08/02/14 09:55 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
DancerJ Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/22/14
Posts: 42
I am with you, Brian. We need a teacher because we stink.

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#2310167 - 08/02/14 09:59 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
fizikisto Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 529
Loc: Hernando, MS
BrianDX
Why is that different? Some teachers have different strengths than other teachers. Some teachers simply don't enjoy teaching students who struggle greatly with basic things. But when they teach students with more talent they get energized by those students and are able inspire those students to make the best use of their talent. I see absolutely nothing wrong with such a teacher simply telling a student, "I don't think we're a good match, I think it would be better if you found a different teacher."

By the way there are also teachers who relish the challenge of working with students who struggle more. The successes of those students mean more to them. I know some teachers actually prefer working with those students because they feel like they are making more of a difference in those students lives. I don't see anything wrong with that either.

If you were such a student, which kind of teacher would you want? A teacher who didn't enjoy teaching you, who was constantly frustrated by your lack of progress, and maybe even one who inadvertently put so much pressure on you to meet their standards that you felt dumb? Or would you want a teacher that was more nurturing and supportive and who relished your every victory at the piano?

Conversely, if you were an exceptional student who could reach a very high level (and wanted to), would you want a nurturing and supportive teacher who would let you slide and didn't really push you? or would you want someone who saw your talent and was going to push you and help you strive to make the most of it?

I'm not saying that some teachers can't be both, but I am saying that not all teachers can be both. And as a teacher, if you think you're not the best person to help someone reach their goals, you have an obligation not to waste their time. Of course, opinions vary, but that's mine. smile
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#2310169 - 08/02/14 10:07 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
fizikisto Online   content
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Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 529
Loc: Hernando, MS
jdw,
Absolutely I would say that, but it depends on the context. If I moved and chose to go to a more conveniently located doctor then I wouldn't say that I fired the old one. But if my doctor gave me bad service, I would definitely say fire. In fact I did. My dad had kidney stones last year and he had an absolutely incompetent doctor, what the doctor did didn't quite reach the level of malpractice, but it was close in my view. And absolutely I told my parents they needed to fire him and find another doctor. I don't think fire necessarily implies subordination (though it can, obviously). We see in this very thread talk of students firing teachers and teachers firing students. In this context, I think fire simply means a termination of service when one party isn't meeting the obligations to the other.
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#2310181 - 08/02/14 10:51 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
MandyD Offline
Full Member

Registered: 07/12/14
Posts: 109
Loc: Australia
Wow I'd be in trouble if my teacher decided to sack students that were awful. blush I can understand what your saying fizikisto but in my humble opinion they are being paid for a service and if their student is awful (and I'm not talking about slack payment, rudeness, and that kind of thing) then maybe the teacher needs to re-evaluate themselves and their chosen profession. Part of teaching is actually learning from the students too. I'd be devastated if my teacher turned around and said "I just don't think you have the talent I'm looking for and you should find someone else". I would probably quit even playing at all.

As for the use of the word fire, that's just arguing about semantics, and everyone will have their own personal interpretation depending on their language and culture. smile
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#2310184 - 08/02/14 10:55 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
FarmGirl Offline

Silver Supporter until Jan 02 2013


Registered: 09/14/10
Posts: 1993
Loc: Scottsdale, AZ
I have never "fired" a teacher. I have left a teacher because I needed to move on. It's different from firing an employee. It's more like changing from one school to another if I try to find a close example. The reasons for switch can be very simple or complex, again very similar to changing school. It works sometimes and it doesn't sometimes. In some other cases my teachers left me since they moved to different state.
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#2310186 - 08/02/14 10:58 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: MandyD]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5158
Originally Posted By: MandyD
I'd be devastated if my teacher turned around and said "I just don't think you have the talent I'm looking for and you should find someone else". I would probably quit even playing at all.

That's what my brother did, after our teacher fired him. He was eleven then.
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#2310201 - 08/02/14 11:34 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
fizikisto Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 529
Loc: Hernando, MS
MandyD
I don't think anybody is very good at piano when they begin. It's incredibly hard and it takes years of dedicated practice to get good. It's so worth it if you stick with it though. It is so much fun to play! In fact, they really chose that word well, play! It's like recess from when you were a little kid!

I'm a college professor (Physics not Music), and I'm a really good at it. But I do know that some students just don't mesh well with my teaching style. When I encounter that, I don't have any problem recommending to the student that they try a different teacher. Because I want the student to have the best possible experience with physics, and more importantly I want them to learn. If they have an easier time with a teacher that has a different style, my feelings aren't hurt one bit. And similarly, sometimes that other professor might have struggling students that would do much better in my class.

With regards to piano, I don't think the teacher has to say, "You're unworthy of me as a student." THAT would be really mean, unnecessary, and horrible. But I think they can explain that a different teacher might help them progress better and with less stress. Instead of "you suck!" it could be, "I think a different teacher might help you learn better."

And yes, some people might quit because of that I suppose. But I also think that continuing in a situation that is frustrating for both parties might also lead to that student quitting, whereas getting them a teacher better suited to their temperament and skill level might make it so much more fun for them that they do stick with it.

Let me put it another way. Imagine that you had a friend who just started teaching piano, and they told you, "I have this new student who just is not very good. Or maybe I'm just not very good at teaching them. I've tried everything I know to do to help them and nothing seems to be working. I feel like I'm just taking their money and not really helping them. I really think they might be better able to learn with a different teacher, but I'm afraid if I tell them that it might hurt their feelings." What would you advise them to do?

Ive seen a lot of people here on piano world talk about their struggles with finding the right teacher, but that when they did it made such a difference for them. And if you did have a teacher that suggested you find someone else, and you did find that right teacher for you, wouldn't you be grateful to them for their honesty?

I won't be surprised if my opinion is a minority opinion on this issue, but that's o.k. too. As I said, Opinions vary (otherwise it would be a really boring world!)

All that I'm really trying to say is that sometimes a teacher continuing to teach a student could actually be a disservice to that student. I don't think that means the teacher is objectively bad (they may be a great teacher for other students that match better with them), and I don't think the teacher is guilty of some sort of moral failing if they are honest about that.

In any case, that's my 2 cents worth. smile
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#2310203 - 08/02/14 11:48 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: fizikisto]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5158
Originally Posted By: fizikisto

Let me put it another way. Imagine that you had a friend who just started teaching piano, and they told you, "I have this new student who just is not very good. Or maybe I'm just not very good at teaching them. I've tried everything I know to do to help them and nothing seems to be working. I feel like I'm just taking their money and not really helping them. I really think they might be better able to learn with a different teacher, but I'm afraid if I tell them that it might hurt their feelings."

Neatly dodging the question I posed originally.

Does a teacher sack a student who doesn't have sufficient talent, just so that he/she can maintain his/her reputation of all his/her students becoming very good?
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"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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#2310207 - 08/02/14 11:52 AM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: fizikisto]
BrianDX Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/14/14
Posts: 711
Loc: Lewes DE
Originally Posted By: fizikisto
BrianDX
Why is that different? Some teachers have different strengths than other teachers. Some teachers simply don't enjoy teaching students who struggle greatly with basic things. But when they teach students with more talent they get energized by those students and are able inspire those students to make the best use of their talent. I see absolutely nothing wrong with such a teacher simply telling a student, "I don't think we're a good match, I think it would be better if you found a different teacher."

By the way there are also teachers who relish the challenge of working with students who struggle more. The successes of those students mean more to them. I know some teachers actually prefer working with those students because they feel like they are making more of a difference in those students lives. I don't see anything wrong with that either.

If you were such a student, which kind of teacher would you want? A teacher who didn't enjoy teaching you, who was constantly frustrated by your lack of progress, and maybe even one who inadvertently put so much pressure on you to meet their standards that you felt dumb? Or would you want a teacher that was more nurturing and supportive and who relished your every victory at the piano?

Conversely, if you were an exceptional student who could reach a very high level (and wanted to), would you want a nurturing and supportive teacher who would let you slide and didn't really push you? or would you want someone who saw your talent and was going to push you and help you strive to make the most of it?

I'm not saying that some teachers can't be both, but I am saying that not all teachers can be both. And as a teacher, if you think you're not the best person to help someone reach their goals, you have an obligation not to waste their time. Of course, opinions vary, but that's mine. smile

You know I'm not really sure. I would like to think that most of the piano teachers out there are equipped to deal with both the struggling and exceptional student. It would also be nice to know what the teacher expectations are of their prospective students BEFORE they sign up.

I know for a fact that my teacher has both (I hope I'm in the middle somewhere smile )

I think that there are teachers and students out there that are more exceptional talents, and that I think is not the norm, especially in this forum.

My only issue is this: If you are an adult starting out on this journey, and if it turns out you have little natural ability in this regard, there HAS to be a teacher out there that can help move you along on your journey.

I would like to think that a majority of teachers out there are equipped to handle all kinds of talent levels, and that it would be a rare occurrence where a teacher lets a student go simply because they aren't "good enough".
_________________________
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2013 Yamaha C2X | 2001 Yamaha M500-F .
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#2310214 - 08/02/14 12:05 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
fizikisto Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 529
Loc: Hernando, MS
Bennevis,
Sorry, I wasn't trying to dodge your question, I just got off on a tangent. I would say that a teacher that was motivated by his or her own reputation rather than the best interests of the student is not a very professional teacher and I certainly wouldn't want them as a teacher. I've seen that sort of thing a lot in martial arts, where some dojos only want students that are going to win trophies in tournaments and (therefore) enhance the reputation of the school. I find such schools, and attitudes, to be an anathema. Does that answer the question?

The broader point that I was trying, and perhaps failing, to make was that Just because a teacher lets a student go because of some mismatch, doesn't make that teacher a bad teacher or a bad person. Sure, there are some really terrible people who are also teachers. But I think that most people who enter that profession do so with a real desire to help their students learn.
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#2310217 - 08/02/14 12:12 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
fizikisto Online   content
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/13/12
Posts: 529
Loc: Hernando, MS
BrianDx,
I think you're probably right, for most teachers and students there is probably enough of an overlap that these sorts of issues would never come up. The thing is, as I said EVERYONE struggles when they begin. And any teacher that teaches beginners is going to have to have a lot of patience. I'm not suggesting that some teacher should be like, "o.k., you flubbed ode to joy for the third time, I can't take this anymore!" But I do think that sometimes students and teachers just don't mesh for whatever reasons. I think that teachers should always try to be motivated by what is in the best interests of their students.
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#2310221 - 08/02/14 12:27 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: fizikisto]
BrianDX Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/14/14
Posts: 711
Loc: Lewes DE
Originally Posted By: fizikisto
BrianDx,
I think you're probably right, for most teachers and students there is probably enough of an overlap that these sorts of issues would never come up. The thing is, as I said EVERYONE struggles when they begin. And any teacher that teaches beginners is going to have to have a lot of patience. I'm not suggesting that some teacher should be like, "o.k., you flubbed ode to joy for the third time, I can't take this anymore!" But I do think that sometimes students and teachers just don't mesh for whatever reasons. I think that teachers should always try to be motivated by what is in the best interests of their students.

And on that thought we can agree smile
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2013 Yamaha C2X | 2001 Yamaha M500-F .
Current: Diabelli - Allegretto | Schein - Allemande | Faber - Vivace

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#2310223 - 08/02/14 12:37 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
Starr Keys Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 09/07/09
Posts: 1010
Loc: california
Originally Posted By: fizikisto
Originally Posted By: bennevis

Do you fire students who just aren't up to your high standards? I had this experience in my childhood, when my first teacher left (after one year) to further her studies abroad, and my mother decided to find the best teacher (by reputation) in town for my brother and me. The new teacher asked to look at our Grade 1 ABRSM results: I had a distinction; my older brother had a pass. She told my mother that she didn't think my brother was good enough to continue much further, and sure enough, she 'fired' him within a few weeks.
...Later, I wondered whether the reason why she had such a big reputation in the neighborhood was because she fired any student that didn't have sufficient musical talent to come up to her standard
Ive seen a lot of people here on piano world talk about their struggles with finding the right teacher, but that when they did it made such a difference for them.


Hmmn, this all really got me thinking, since my teacher also teaches at the college where I take piano performance classes and since I searched long and hard for him. I have noticed that he will spend extra time above what I'm paying for my lesson to make sure I'm getting everything I need and he wants me to get. But I'm not sure he's doing it because he cares about his reputation. It seems like these extra long lessons often coincide with my playing my own ideas for an arrangement or improv that please or intrigue him. Also he has mentioned several times that he sees a lot of improvement since I started with him, so I think he's pretty happy with me as a student, and I think we have a mutual respect for each other's capabilities.

I tried to take piano lessons 20 years ago, and changed teachers four times (one after only a day) in less than two years and really never got anywhere with any of them. Now I feel I make progress after ever lesson. On the other hand, I stayed with my first teacher 20 years ago for over a year without feeling I was making much progress at all. So call it "firing" or "moving on", Piano lessons are expensive and there is no worse feeling than discovering that you've paid out all this money to fail and lose all the confidence and enthusiasm you had for the piano. Better to teach yourself. I can honestly say that even though I fell short as a teacher, I was at least the second best one I ever had. smile

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#2310233 - 08/02/14 01:21 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
Morodiene Offline
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/06/07
Posts: 11968
Loc: Boynton Beach, FL
I usually call it "dismissing myself as their teacher," or "referred them to another teacher that was a better fit." I agree the term "fire" implies subordination but also a lack of respect. An employee gets laid off if they are let go for reasons other than the employee's conduct, and fired if it's due to their conduct in some way. So "fired" really holds more than an unequal relationship, but also attaches a stigma to the person being "fired". In this case from what the OP describes, the term does seem appropriate for the latter case, but not the former as there was never a employer/employee relationship.
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#2310236 - 08/02/14 01:31 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
malkin Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2564
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
I see two issues in this thread. I'll weigh in on both of them.

1. Teachers can and should manage their teaching load and their reputation however they want.

2. Informal terms like 'fire' may be used casually but sometimes lack precision and create misunderstanding.
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#2310258 - 08/02/14 02:12 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: malkin]
BrianDX Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/14/14
Posts: 711
Loc: Lewes DE
Originally Posted By: malkin
Teachers can and should manage their teaching load and their reputation however they want.

I agree with the teaching load entirely, however it is the teacher's sole responsibility to figure out what load they can handle.

The reputation part I have a REAL problem with. If a teacher is worrying about their reputation because one or more of their students are not progressing, sorry but that seems wrong to me.

I would even say, that a teacher's real "reputation" should be based on how the least of their students progress (even by very small amounts), not their finest.
_________________________
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2013 Yamaha C2X | 2001 Yamaha M500-F .
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#2310275 - 08/02/14 03:06 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: BrianDX]
malkin Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2564
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
Originally Posted By: BrianDX
...I would even say, that a teacher's real "reputation" should be based on how the least of their students progress (even by very small amounts), not their finest.


This sounds like you are talking about reputation from a sort of 'great is their reward in heaven' perspective.
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#2310285 - 08/02/14 03:45 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: malkin]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5158
Originally Posted By: malkin
Originally Posted By: BrianDX
...I would even say, that a teacher's real "reputation" should be based on how the least of their students progress (even by very small amounts), not their finest.


This sounds like you are talking about reputation from a sort of 'great is their reward in heaven' perspective.


It seems to me like you are fine with teachers who, once they acquire enough students, jettison their worst ones to avoid tarnishing their reputations with 'no-hopers'.

In which case, people who have very little musical talent will only be able to get teachers who are so desperate for students that they'll take on anyone. In other words, the teachers just starting out, and the very inept ones whose students have mostly abandoned them....
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#2310293 - 08/02/14 04:13 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: bennevis]
BrianDX Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/14/14
Posts: 711
Loc: Lewes DE
My concerns exactly.

I think the good news is that most competent and dedicated teachers (many of whom post right here) feel that their profession is to teach all talent levels, young and small, beginners and experts alike. They derive satisfaction from all signs of improvement, and would never do anything unethical.
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#2310371 - 08/02/14 08:32 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: BrianDX]
malkin Offline
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/18/09
Posts: 2564
Loc: *sigh* Salt Lake City
I agree that it is an unfortunate practice, but it isn't like torturing animals or arson or murder or drunk driving. It isn't even like holding extreme political views that differ from mine. To me it isn't even in the same league as driving a gas guzzling car, because being choosy about student's doesn't affect me at all and only affects the world a tiny bit.

I don't really see the difference between choosing to select "promising students" and a health care practitioner choosing a specialty, say a speech therapist who wanted a practice specializing in kids with autism who picked up some stutterers while trying to grow a caseload.
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#2310375 - 08/02/14 08:54 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: malkin]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5158
Originally Posted By: malkin


I don't really see the difference between choosing to select "promising students" and a health care practitioner choosing a specialty, say a speech therapist who wanted a practice specializing in kids with autism who picked up some stutterers while trying to grow a caseload.

You really don't??

How about your doctor telling you that you're too old/fat/whatever and doesn't want to have you as a patient, because you'll be too much trouble?
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"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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#2310380 - 08/02/14 09:12 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: bennevis]
Polyphonist Offline
7000 Post Club Member

Registered: 03/03/13
Posts: 7606
Loc: New York City
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: malkin


I don't really see the difference between choosing to select "promising students" and a health care practitioner choosing a specialty, say a speech therapist who wanted a practice specializing in kids with autism who picked up some stutterers while trying to grow a caseload.

You really don't??

How about your doctor telling you that you're too old/fat/whatever and doesn't want to have you as a patient, because you'll be too much trouble?

That would be the doctor's prerogative.
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Regards,

Polyphonist

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#2310382 - 08/02/14 09:20 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: Polyphonist]
bennevis Offline
5000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/14/10
Posts: 5158
Originally Posted By: Polyphonist
Originally Posted By: bennevis
Originally Posted By: malkin


I don't really see the difference between choosing to select "promising students" and a health care practitioner choosing a specialty, say a speech therapist who wanted a practice specializing in kids with autism who picked up some stutterers while trying to grow a caseload.

You really don't??

How about your doctor telling you that you're too old/fat/whatever and doesn't want to have you as a patient, because you'll be too much trouble?

That would be the doctor's prerogative.

Not where I come from.

Actually, smokers, heavy drinkers, hypertensives, diabetics...(the list goes on ad infinitum) could also be on the hit list......
_________________________
"I don't play accurately - anyone can play accurately - but I play with wonderful expression. As far as the piano is concerned, sentiment is my forte. I keep science for Life."

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#2310383 - 08/02/14 09:22 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
rnaple Offline

Silver Supporter until April 24 2014


Registered: 12/23/10
Posts: 2106
Loc: Rocky Mountains
You people are talking results. That, indirectly, is what caused me to leave my last teacher. The teacher herself was great. She wasn't immune to society. Where I took the lessons. A person kept coming up to the door of the room. I won't say who I think it was. And I don't care. There was pressure to hear results.
This also distracted me and made things worse. It was so obvious. One time when I had practiced and played for her only 6 bars, only right hand, of a well known piece I thought much of. This attitude was so obvious in the place that she stood up when I was done and yelled at the door: You got it! You got it all! All the dynamics! The hesitations were perfect! You got it!
She wanted to make sure everyone there heard her.
It wasn't her that caused me to leave.
The society here is a very in your face, results oriented society. They are experts at general knowledge and expertise in nothing. They strain at a knat while swallowing camels. There is nothing truly creative about them.
I now study a System that is great. A great truly accessible teacher who wrote it. I would never again consider taking any lessons around here unless they were very private.
_________________________
Ron
Your brain is a sponge. Keep it wet. Mary Gae George
The focus of your personal practice is discipline. Not numbers. Scott Sonnon

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#2310385 - 08/02/14 09:27 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: alans]
keystring Online   content
Yikes! 10000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/11/07
Posts: 11708
Loc: Canada
I'm thinking that the question of teachers firing students should be in a different thread. It is a different topic and it stirs up emotions.

Otoh, in the present context there is some pertinence as follows:

If a student is being "taught" in the haphazard way that is being described here, then that student will end up having weaknesses and problems. He will come to the next teacher with those problems. It is not, like was mentioned, a matter of "talent" but a matter of missing skills. The next teacher needs to know how teach those skills, and patch the holes. If he doesn't know how to do that, then he should not be teaching that student. It is not a matter of the student not being "good enough" for the teacher, but the teacher not having the expertise for that particular thing.

Sort of on the same subject, I've seen a lot of references to things like PhD's. If you're at the beginning, you need someone who knows how to teach and give you the fundamentals - not a great performer or someone with tons of head knowledge.

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#2310396 - 08/02/14 09:59 PM Re: Have you had to fire your piano teacher? Why? [Re: malkin]
BrianDX Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/14/14
Posts: 711
Loc: Lewes DE
Originally Posted By: malkin
I don't really see the difference between choosing to select "promising students" and a health care practitioner choosing a specialty, say a speech therapist who wanted a practice specializing in kids with autism who picked up some stutterers while trying to grow a caseload.

If a teacher is only interested in "promising students" then that should be made clear at the beginning. Before starting lessons my wife and I were interviewed by our teacher in her home. Lots of question were asked on both sides. When it was done, both parties agreed to the lessons.

Almost a year later she has exceeded our wildest expectations. Hopefully we have a little bit ourselves.

Imagine for a minute you are an older adult and have made the decision to take lessons. You buy a piano, work hard (with 1,000 other things to do as well I reckon) and look for encouragement for your teacher. After six months she say to you "sorry but I'm dropping you because you are not good enough for my instruction". I'm thinking that could be very devastating to the adult student. It may affect his/her world a LOT perhaps.

If you still don't understand why that could be a potentially negative thing for a teacher to do, well, time to move to another thread,,,
_________________________
Groucho Marx: "Now we're getting somewhere"
2013 Yamaha C2X | 2001 Yamaha M500-F .
Current: Diabelli - Allegretto | Schein - Allemande | Faber - Vivace

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