For the last few newsletter articles, I’ve written about my son, Ryan, beginning to learn the piano. Thank you to everyone that reached out to let me know that you enjoyed the articles!
So, we left off with us not exactly being the model piano students. Ryan loves the lessons with Ms. Cera and likes playing piano. But, he’s five so the majority of the “remembering to practice” falls on me. Well, it isn’t always on the top of my priority list. And, you know what? That’s okay. He is still gaining great skills and confidence each week. He put in extra effort around the recital and the promise of a Musical Ladder test can really encourage him to ask about practicing. Ms.Cera has a summer practice club called the Cool Cats and Ryan is all over anything that will earn him a prize.
I think back over these first six months and realize what he has learned and it just amazes me. Sure, he can play a few songs and is starting to read music. He sometimes remembers to hold half notes for two beats. That’s all great. The bigger accomplishments in my mind are the fact that my son now speaks to Josephine and Jolynne at the front desk when they ask about his day. He runs into the room when Ms. Cera is ready with a huge smile on his face, ready to tackle her latest challenge. Ryan got over his fear and walked out on the stage and performed his song at the recital. He is learning so much more than music each week. I know there will be times that he isn’t in love with music and I’m not in love with the hour drive to get him to his lesson. I know there will be times that Ryan will feel that other activities might interest him more and I feel like I have to decide between battling over homework or piano practice. So, in those moments, I know that I can look back on what he has accomplished so far and realize that I wouldn’t let him stop math class because he was more interested in football or quit picking up his dirty socks off the floor because he already picked up the toys from the floor.
It’s all about perspective and setting expectations. I don’t expect him to be a child prodigy or earn a college scholarship. I don’t even expect him to like music all the time. I do expect him to be respectful to his teacher. I do expect him to put in effort and to try his best. So, Ryan is getting ready for the next six months of lessons with one eye on that cool Musical Ladder trophy he wants and one eye on that drum room he passes each week on his way into Ms. Cera’s room. More on that one later!
-Melissa Jeffreys, owner
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