In making it possible for your child to play a musical instrument, you are providing the opportunity for self-expression, creativity, and achievement. Numerous studies indicate that parental attitude, support and involvement are important factors in a child’s ability to successfully learn to play and to enjoy music.

How Can Parents Help?

Always keep in mind that your support is a key element in your child’s success with music study. 
Music achievement requires effort over a period of time.

You can help your child by:

  • Scheduling Practice Times!!!
  • Providing a quiet place in which to practice.
  • Remaining nearby during practice times as often as possible.
  • Scheduling a consistent, daily time for practice.
  • Praising your child’s efforts and achievements.

What To Do

To give your child the best possible support, you should:

  • Encourage your child to play for family and for friends.
  • Expose your child to a wide variety of music, including concerts and recitals.
  • Encourage your child to talk with you about his or her lessons.
  • Make sure your child’s instrument is always in good working order.
  • Allow your child to play many types of music, not just study pieces.
  • Listen to your child practice, and acknowledge improvement.
  • Help your child build a personal music library.
  • Try to get your child to make a minimum two-year commitment to his or her music studies.

What Not To Do

Your child’s progress will be
greatly enhanced if you…

  • Don’t use practice as a punishment.
  • Don’t insist your child play for others when they don’t want to.
  • Don’t ridicule or make fun of mistakes or less-than-perfect playing.
  • Don’t apologize to others for your child’s weak performance.
  • Don’t start your child on an instrument that’s in poor working order or condition.
  • Don’t expect rapid progress and development in the beginning.

If Your Child Loses Interest

In the event your child loses interest in his or her music studies, don’t panic.

  • Discuss the situation with your child to determine why their interest is declining.
  • Talk to your child’s music teacher to see what might be done to rekindle their enthusiasm.
  • Encourage your child to stick with lessons for an agreed period of time.
  • Offer increased enthusiasm and support.

This message has been developed by the following organizations in the interest of making music study and participation an enjoyable and richly rewarding experience for children and their families.
American Music Conference * Music Educators National Conference * Music Teachers National Assn.* Natl. Assn. of Music Merchants