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#456486 - 05/08/05 06:27 PM Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianoanne Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/02/04
Posts: 649
Loc: Pacific NW

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#456487 - 05/08/05 06:44 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
miseenplace Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/16/05
Posts: 197
Loc: Minnesota
Do you have a crush on your teacher? Just go. Tell her, and tell her you would rather not talk about it. Bye bye.
_________________________
Kuan

Say meez-ahn-plaz

All Hail the Sixteen Men of Tain!

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#456488 - 05/08/05 08:11 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianoanne Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/02/04
Posts: 649
Loc: Pacific NW
Anyone have something helpful to say?

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#456489 - 05/08/05 08:17 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianojerome Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/05
Posts: 9868
 Quote:
Originally posted by apianonne:
1) Should I tell her now that I am not coming back so that way I won't have to give the recital or wait until the summer so that my final grades will be unaffected by my news?
[/b]
Wait until after you have given your performance, and then tell her that you are not returning.

 Quote:
Originally posted by apianonne:
2) What phony reason should I make up for wanting to transfer? The school I'm transferring to allows me to move back in with my parents, and hence pay in-state tuition, so I was going to say I had to transfer for financial reasons. Good idea?
[/b]
Tell her that you feel she is not the best teacher for you. Tell her that you are a student who needs much help from the teacher, and that you feel you can get more from a teacher who does not shop for lingerie during lessons, who listens attentively to you, and who will give good advice.

Understand that most important is the relationship between the student and the teacher. If you and your teacher are not a good match, then you should definately transfer (which you already are going to do), and you shouldn't be afraid to tell her so.

Tell her honestly why you are leaving. Truthfully. Don't be afraid of her.
_________________________
Sam

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#456490 - 05/08/05 08:37 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8482
Loc: Ohio, USA
 Quote:
The school I'm transferring to allows me to move back in with my parents, and hence pay in-state tuition, so I was going to say I had to transfer for financial reasons.
this is a good enough reason!

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#456491 - 05/08/05 08:39 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianojerome Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/05
Posts: 9868
...but not the real reason.

I don't mean to play mother, but you shouldn't be afraid to tell the truth. Unless she's a demon spawn, I don't see a reason to make up an excuse. ;\)
_________________________
Sam

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#456492 - 05/08/05 08:44 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
signa Offline
8000 Post Club Member

Registered: 06/06/04
Posts: 8482
Loc: Ohio, USA
sometimes, it's better not to tell the truth, since the truth hurts. so why bother, unless you want to help her next students by telling her what some big faults of hers are in her teaching.

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#456493 - 05/08/05 08:46 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianojerome Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/05
Posts: 9868
Perhaps no one has ever told her the truth, so she thinks she can get away with such behavior?

Perhaps she might ask you to stay with a promise that she'll try to work a little better at your lessons?
_________________________
Sam

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#456494 - 05/08/05 08:59 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Opus_Maximus Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/27/04
Posts: 1458
Why make up a phony reason?? Tell her the TRUTH...even if it will cause some temporary humiliation it will be better for the both of you in the long run.

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#456495 - 05/08/05 09:09 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Cindysphinx Offline


Registered: 02/14/03
Posts: 6416
Loc: Washington D.C. Metro
Why not just tell her the truth next time she does something inappropriate in your lesson? If my teacher started firing up the Internet in my lesson, I would stop playing that second. If she didn't get off, I'd speak up about it.
_________________________
Vote For Cindy!!

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

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#456496 - 05/08/05 09:13 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianoanne Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/02/04
Posts: 649
Loc: Pacific NW

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#456497 - 05/08/05 09:30 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Opus_Maximus Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/27/04
Posts: 1458
Why make up a phony reason?? Tell her the TRUTH...even if it will cause some temporary humiliation it will be better for the both of you in the long run.

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#456498 - 05/08/05 09:54 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
ShiroKuro Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/04
Posts: 3234
Loc: not in Japan anymore
apianonne, what is this school? You said the teacher has tenure, so is it a college/university? a conservatory? music-high school?

Universities tend to have teacher assessment and take surveys of students to get their feedback, if you have the opportunity, you should really let your experience be known, that this is a teacher who is not professional (internet during the lesson is inexcusable!) and has not made an effort to meet your needs as a student.

If it's not a university, you might want to figure out a different (though tactful) way to let her know why you're leaving.

Regarding the recital, do you have to play in it for grade-purposes? Start by telling her you're not ready and you don't want to play, see how it goes.
_________________________
Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u




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#456499 - 05/08/05 10:27 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Requiem Aeternam Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 07/28/04
Posts: 1395
Loc: Brooklyn, NY
I'm against these ideas, what I would personally do is make up a lie and break it to her softly so I never have to deal with her again. Your excuse sounded good, that you have to transfer for financial reasons, it's something she certainly should be able to understand so I say go for it and make another excuse why you won't be in the recital too while you're at it. It's the best way unless you're really ballsy and I'm curious whether all these people making the suggestions to be straightforward would really look their teacher in the face and tell them they're not happy with their teaching, hell maybe I'm spineless but I don't think I'd be able to do that.
_________________________
"He who turns himself into a beast, gets rid of the pain of being a man."

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#456500 - 05/08/05 10:27 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianoanne Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/02/04
Posts: 649
Loc: Pacific NW

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#456501 - 05/09/05 05:11 AM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
miseenplace Offline
Full Member

Registered: 01/16/05
Posts: 197
Loc: Minnesota
You obviously have some kind of attachment toward your teacher, your school, be it grades or otherwise. If I didn't like something I just don't do it again, don't return. It's like a bad restaurant. What's so bad about two people mutually agreeing that they don't like each other, or that the situation isn't working out, for whatever reason, and then just walking away without regrets. Move on, don't look back. Free yourself of this emotional baggage.
_________________________
Kuan

Say meez-ahn-plaz

All Hail the Sixteen Men of Tain!

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#456502 - 05/09/05 06:43 AM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Frank III Offline
Full Member

Registered: 11/10/03
Posts: 310
Loc: Spring Lake, MI
I'll be a little abrasive with this next comment:
Do the right thing and play the da** recital piece. Stop blaming the teacher for your lack of motivations. After the recital, tell the teacher the truth - that you feel that you and her are not the best match. If she asks you why, tell her the truth about the canceled lessons and internet.
_________________________
Frank III

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#456503 - 05/09/05 11:28 AM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Steve Chandler Online   content
2000 Post Club Member

Registered: 02/18/05
Posts: 2629
Loc: Urbandale, Iowa
I would take this up with the department chair immediately. There is no need to tell the teacher anything. You have a REAL problem so take it to someone who can do something real about it. She may have tenure, but they can make her life uncomfortable by doing such things as making her teach Music Appreciation.

I understand the motivation to keep it quiet and lie. However if you want to get out of the recital that's probably not an option. Life presents us with opportunities to be who we really want to be. This is one for you. Do you really want to leave this messunattended so someone else can be similarly harmed (how many students does this teacher have?)? Or do you want to be someone who runs from trouble and lets others clean up the mess? Be who you are, but if you take it to the departmental administration it becomes their problem especially if you leave.

Cheers,

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#456504 - 05/09/05 01:00 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
SteinwayTony Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/16/04
Posts: 222
Loc: New York, NY
I'm (sort of) with Frank III on this one. I agree that this is a teacher with whom you probably don't want to continue -- but I would hesitate before I went blaming my teacher for my being unprepared for a recital. I think it's quite possible to be somewhat ready for a performance without the "feedback" of a teacher, because, after a certain stage, the teacher becomes less of a teacher and more of a "coach." You are (probably, as I'm not really familiar with your situation) responsible for the notes, and essentially everything written in the score, and possibly more. If you give a note-perfect but uninspired performance, well, it's too bad the teacher couldn't give you the feedback you wanted, but it's not the end of the world, yes?

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#456505 - 05/09/05 03:50 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianoanne Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/02/04
Posts: 649
Loc: Pacific NW

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#456506 - 05/09/05 06:09 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianojerome Offline
9000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/01/05
Posts: 9868
How would your grades be affected by discussing the problem with the teacher or dean? Aren't your grades based on how well you perform/improve?
_________________________
Sam

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#456507 - 05/09/05 06:28 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianoanne Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/02/04
Posts: 649
Loc: Pacific NW
 Quote:
Originally posted by pianojerome:
How would your grades be affected by discussing the problem with the teacher or dean? Aren't your grades based on how well you perform/improve? [/b]
In theory, yes, but often politics have come into play here.

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#456508 - 05/09/05 06:43 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Phlebas Offline


Registered: 01/02/03
Posts: 4654
Loc: New York City
Send her an email.

Better yet, since she's online so much shopping suring lessons. Set up an auction on eBay for your lesson time slot with her. She might get the message then,

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#456509 - 05/09/05 08:58 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Palindrome Offline
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/22/01
Posts: 3910
Loc: Chicago, IL USA
 Quote:
Originally posted by Phlebas:
Send her an email.

Better yet, since she's online so much shopping suring lessons. Set up an auction on eBay for your lesson time slot with her. She might get the message then, [/b]
Cute!

Don't do anything to harm yourself. Give the recital, get your grades, pack and leave, and then, if you feel that she might benefit from the information, send a letter to your teacher telling her your reasons, possibly with a copy to the dean, or, if you're really angry with her, send a letter to the dean with a copy to her.

Leave the nonsupportive environment your current school is giving you, and take the money you'll save by living with your parents and go to Europe for a few weeks.
_________________________
There is no end of learning. -Robert Schumann Rules for Young Musicians

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#456510 - 05/09/05 10:33 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianoanne Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/02/04
Posts: 649
Loc: Pacific NW
I like the Europe idea \:\)

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#456511 - 05/09/05 11:33 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Opus_Maximus Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/27/04
Posts: 1458
 Quote:
Originally posted by Phlebas:
Send her an email.

Better yet, since she's online so much shopping suring lessons. Set up an auction on eBay for your lesson time slot with her. She might get the message then, [/b]
AHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!

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#456512 - 05/10/05 01:17 AM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Sketchee Offline
Full Member

Registered: 05/23/03
Posts: 198
Loc: Beltsville, MD
I would just tell her the truth or nothing at all. If the recital is part of the course, I don't see how it's going to affect whether or not you have to perform.

Since she has tenure, she's not up for annual review and she doesn't have to be told that she's still working there next year (rehired yearly basically). It varies from school to school, but one university says tenure can be revoked for "professional incompetence, neglect of duty, insubordination, conviction of a felony or any offense involving moral turpitude ... or sexual harassment or other conduct which falls below minimum standards of professional integrity."

So yeah, she can still be removed from her throne. Her boss is most likely the Dean who I would write a letter to, now or even after you've left. Be polite and at least sound like the good guy though.
_________________________
[ Sketchee.com | Art & Sheet Music ]
\ eBay Art / [/b]

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#456513 - 05/10/05 06:24 AM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
Phlebas Offline


Registered: 01/02/03
Posts: 4654
Loc: New York City
Seriously,

If there is a way to "postpone" your recital until next year, that would be better. That would give you breathing room to assess your situation. Another reason for this is, playing an hour long underprepared recital can be a devastating experience that can be very damaging to your spirit, and is hardly ever worth doing.

Some things to assess: You had a problem with your original teacher. You now have a problem with your present teacher. Why is that (I'm not necessarily blaming you btw)?

What's the story with her other students? Have you asked any exploratory questions about wht their lessons are like?

Where are you as a student and performer in that school? - upper percentile? lower? middle?

Lots of other things to consider in making a decision on whether this school is wrong for you, and if you would be better off elsewhere.

That being said, there is definitely a disconnect between you and you teacher that should be addressed. The politics can make that tricky as far as how you would proceed.

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#456514 - 05/10/05 07:30 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
ShiroKuro Online   content
3000 Post Club Member

Registered: 12/26/04
Posts: 3234
Loc: not in Japan anymore
The issue of your grades is important. Once the grade is on your transcript, it's on there and you can't choose to just not transfer that one grade. So, first of all, I would say protect your butt till the grade is in.

Next, let's separate the issue of the teacher and the recital. Do the recital, or don't, but keep it separate from your concerns with your teacher. In the end, it's you at the keyboard not the teacher. If the recital is part of your grade, do the recital and do you best to cover for your lack of being ready. And do it because it will be a good experience or whatever, not because you were guilt-tripped into it.

Now, the other thing you have to think about is what Phlebas touched on, is this a problem more with the teacher, or are you in any way responsibile? If you can truthfully say to yourself: "no it's not me, this teacher is a problem and her conduct is always unprofessional," then I think you should do something about it.

People who commented that it's very difficult to be straightforward and confront someone were right on the money. It takes more courage than most of us have to say to someone's face "you are a bad teacher, don't use internet during my lesson and stop eating potato chips." So you don't have to be that brave, the suggestion to talk to the dean was a good one, or even email is ok, but it should be directed at someone other than the teacher, maybe the dept head or a student advocate even.

My opinion is that if at all possible, after the grades are in and you are on your way to the next school, you should make it very clear to the relevant authorities at the school that you have had troubles with this teacher. Why? Because after you're gone, she will teach someone else. If her conduct is as unprofessional as you say, it needs to be dealt with, and if you can play a role in saving future students from the same suffering you're experiencing, I think you should. You never know, a wake up call might also change the teacher for the better, and she'll either come around or decide that she actually hates teaching and wants to open a flower shop. You could change her life for the better!

Good luck.
_________________________
Started piano June 1999. My recordings at Box.Net:
https://app.box.com/s/j4rgyhn72uvluemg1m6u




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#456515 - 05/10/05 11:00 PM Re: Breaking the news to your teacher?
pianoanne Offline
500 Post Club Member

Registered: 11/02/04
Posts: 649
Loc: Pacific NW

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