Am I fun to practice with? Do I willingly spend the time to create a successful practice? Do I enjoy practicing with my child? Would I enjoy practicing with someone like me? How many ways can I think of to have fun at the piano with my child?
Are my words sweet? Do I pay more attention to what is going right or what is going wrong? Am I kind and respectful in my comments to my child? Am I courteous and understanding? Are my expectations realistic? How many ways can I think of to notice the good things my child does?
Am I fun to be around? Am I mostly positive or negative? Am I calm and Patient or do I have a temper and a nasty disposition? Do I make my child feel good about their effort? Would my child go out of his way to be with me? How many ways can I think of to encourage my child?
Do I place a High Priority on music study? Does piano practice tend to be last on my list? If there is a soccer game at the same time as a piano recital will I choose soccer (baseball, basketball, etc.) over piano? Can my children tell by my attitude how much I value music education? Do I find it easy to skip lessons, arrive late, leave early? Am I committed to daily practice and daily listening or do we try to fit it in when we have time? How many ways can I find to show my children that I value the richness music brings to our lives?
Does my child have a voice? Do I let him make appropriate choices about his music study? What time shall we practice? Which piece shall we study first? How many repetitions will make this part beautiful? Do you think this part should be loud or soft? How many ways can I find to give my child choices?
Do I help my child to own the music? Do I invite my child to evaluate? Do I encourage my child to develop independence? Do I notice that he can do some things well on his own? Do I allow him to explore? How many ways can I find to help my child to develop independence and ownership for his musical ability?
Do I understand the magic of listening? Do I understand what listening to the CD has to do with learning the music? Am I consistent about keeping the CD playing or am I content with listening once in a while? When the music is in the way do I turn it off or turn in down? Do I have a CD playing in several parts of the house? Do I play the CD in the car? Am I playing the CD for the next book? Do I know how to program my CD player to repeat? How many times and places can I use to create listening opportunities?
Do I structure the practice to help my child be successful? Do I follow the teacher’s instructions? Do we refer to the teacher’s notes, do the requested number of repetitions, check the fingering, and enjoy the improvement we see each day? Do we keep a record of our practice? Do we try out practice tips we have learned from our teacher or other parents? Do I expect my child to be accountable for his effort? Am I willing to be accountable doing my part to make the practice successful? How many ways can I find to create successful practicing opportunities?
Have I created a musical environment? Do I love music? Do I love the benefits that come from music study? Do I find music an enriching and rewarding part of my life? Do I enjoy sharing this gift with my child? Do we love new CDs, going to concerts, performing, learning new songs? How many ways can I find to enjoy music with my child?