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Kids Room Education How to teach music to our children?
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How to teach music to our children?
Even before the birth of my son, I had the absolute conviction that I should offer him the opportunity to learn as soon as possible to play a musical instrument. This deep conviction was actually born out of a frustration: although born into a musical family, I have not myself played music in my childhood and it is one of my greatest regrets. My mother had tried to teach me the piano but she lacked patience and I was soon put off by the exercises and music theory lessons she imposed on me. As for my father, the violin was his secret garden, he did not like being disturbed when he played, and only at the end of his life, when his strength began to wane, he wanted to teach me the violin technique. Too late...So I 'm a poor pianist and an execrable violinist .
When I had my first child, I rocked him to the sound of classical music I love. When he started putting his fingers on the piano keys, we were very proud, I imagined already him as a future great pianist. And then one day, he no longer wanted to play piano, I do not know why.
This year (he is 5 years old) I asked him to take violin lessons. He did a test and  he liked.
For now, he continues his lessons with pleasure.But when I make him revise his lessons, I often lose patience when I see that he does not succeed as I want. I feel the shadow of my father for whom the violin was his whole life and I get angry when I see my son's lack of concentration. I so hope that one day he will be able to play the Bach Chaconne,on the violin of my own father as he played,  with the same fervour. But I do realize that this is a mistake and that I'm trying to achieve through my son, my  dashed dreams .
My daughter who is 4 years old is very interested in piano, she enjoys almost every day to "play" it ,in its own way...
I prefer to let my daughter very free not to discourage her, because she is very capricious.

I have a lot of questions and I'd be interested to have some opinions. 
Is it reasonable to start learning music with children so young?
How do we know if the musical instrument that is chosen for a child is correct ?
 The child himself did not realize all the benefits that will bring the practice of music, how to make him understand?
Am I being too ambitious or unrealistic acting like I do?
It's  a bit confusing in my mind ...
Your post resonates very deeply with me, so I will put myself out on a limb and respond in a personal way. It sounds like you, like me, love listening to music, but frustration overwhelms your ability to enjoy creating it yourself. The best thing you can do for your children is to surpass that frustration. I quit playing the piano for many years out of frustration, and I have now spent nearly as many years rebuilding my love of the instrument from the beginning. The rewards are beyond description, and I can see it clearly affecting how I interact with my own students.

There have been 10,000 tiny steps in moving from not playing at all to finding what joy I'm able to find currently, so I cannot describe to you a step-by-step process for learning to fully engage with an instrument, but I can tell you a few things that have proved to be keys (no pun intended) for me. There may be other ways, but this is mine.

1) A long-standing relationship with a psychotherapist. For me, nothing would have been possible without this. It precipiated my return to the piano in the first place and lead in both direct and indirect ways to the other "pillars" I'll describe.
2) Yoga/pilates/various body-work forms. These practices continue to provide me with invaluable physical self-awareness and freed me from limitations in my physical approach to the piano that I didn't realize I had and that no piano teacher could have discovered. (Of critical importance was a massage technique called SOMA, but I do not know that it is available outside of Seattle. It is, however, closely related to Rolfing, which I believe is available worldwide. I do not have any experience with the latter. I also had an extraordinary one-time experience with Alexander Technique based upon which I'm comfortable recommending it.)
3) Finding a piano teacher I liked who was willing to work with me as though I was five years old, playing piano for the first time.

These are far from the only things I've done--some helpful, some not--but to the degree that I've come to shed my old frustrations, these three things have been of inestimable value.



Postscript (February 14, 2011 at 11:57 AM):
I just thought of two other important pieces. Again, there may be other possibilities, but for me they've been essential. These are "rules" that resonated with me. I imposed them on myself but judge their "correctness" by having never had a significant urge to break them.

1) Being good at an instrument causes one to enjoy being good at it, but not necessarily to enjoy music itself. This is not sustainable. However, enjoying music itself can lead to been good at an instrument.
2) I play/practice only when I feel like it, and I stop when it stops feeling good to do. This leads to a lot of frustration over wishing that I wanted to play, but while at first I might go weeks or even months without playing, or I might play only a few notes before giving up, now I find that I have to play regularly or I don't feel right about my day.
I wished I could play an instrument, it is the loss in my life that I cannot play any instrument.  I learned to play the guitar, but did not pursue it.
I find it surprising that none of you consider taking up an instrument yourself.  It's nice to get your kids involved, but you can start learning at any age, and the kids might be a little more inspired if you made a place for playing music in your own life.  I know lots of people who've either taken it up late i life, or picked up an instrument they've laid down long ago.
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