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What makes for a good(or bad) teacher?

Home Forums Teaching the Harp What makes for a good(or bad) teacher?

Viewing 15 posts - 1 through 15 (of 18 total)
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  • #83462
    carl-swanson
    Participant

    OK students!

    #83463
    unknown-user
    Participant

    As a student I try to get the greatest benefit from each teacher I encounter. Diverse personalities and teaching styles are beneficial to overall growth, so I value the unique qualities of each of my teachers. I appreciate teachers who have clear, accurate, deep understanding of their art, who understand the big picture as well as details. Individual communication style is not significant to me, whether it is more gentle or abrupt, just as long as the teacher sincerely desires my growth as an artist. Technique is the foundation for creating art, and the process of teaching these tools is most successful when adaptable to the needs of each student. The teachers that I have found most deeply rewarding value the unique strengths of their students encouraging creativity and individuality. They help the student to ?breathe deeply? and find themselves as artists. Each student?s path is as unique as they are and it takes great empathy and wisdom to discover each path and guide the student through it.

    Some teachers approach the learning process as an intricately sculpted garden, with clearly set paths through which they guide each student to a certain goal, with beauties guaranteed. Others approach learning like a field of wildflowers to run through wildly picking flowers, falling down to look at the clouds, discovering a new path, defining a unique experience. I don?t conclude that one approach is better than the other, but personally, my great joy and meaning is found in the field of wildflowers.

    #83464
    Sherj DeSantis
    Participant

    Dear Carl,

    #83465
    unknown-user
    Participant

    A brief response would go something like this:

    Inspiration, leadership, setting goals and the highest standards, and giving you the tools, knowledge and patient guidance to get there. A not great teacher tells you you’re not good enough or not playing right and doesn’t show you how to do better. A great teacher works with you, appreciates your interests but focusses your attention on what you need to accomplish. The greatest teacher teaches you to harness your mind and HOW TO THINK. The greatest teacher is not afraid to hold your hands the way they should be, and listen to you do exercises for an hour, if need be. The greatest teacher will teach you how to practice, improve your tone, and send you to concerts. A good teacher helps you get work and connections. The great teacher knows all musical styles and how to evoke them with the harp, can look at any excerpt and know how the piece goes, can teach you how to hear the harp and what it can do, what you could be doing with it, all of its potentials.

    #83466
    unknown-user
    Participant

    I believe that what makes a good or bad teacher depends almost entirely on the student.

    However, there are a few aspects that I believe everyone can agree on. When you are

    young, you must have a teacher that makes you enjoy harp, if lessons are dreaded then

    practicing will be dreaded. I think that it is vital to make sure that the student is exposed

    to other harpists their age so that they have someone to relate to. It is also important to

    bring beginner students to concerts of professional harpists and (if possible) concerts of

    the teacher playing. This allows the student to see an “end product” and to understand

    what they are working for.

    #83467
    alexander-rider
    Participant

    A teacher who believes in me, even when I am getting it hopelessly wrong! That is a luxury I enjoy!

    #83468
    unknown-user
    Participant

    I second Alex’s post!!!

    #83469
    unknown-user
    Participant

    What I enjoy about my teacher is her ability to find where I was on the path to “great harp playing” and move me forward.

    #83470
    unknown-user
    Participant

    I agree with all the above and want to add in…

    A great teacher is also one who remembers what it was like to be a beginner too and all that we beginners go through.

    #83471
    unknown-user
    Participant

    A good teacher also needs to challenge his/her students. It was only after my teacher gave me more advanced music that I started to practice. Before that, I put very little effort into the harp and got very little out of it. I was not given music that I wanted to learn. I wanted classical, and I was given popular music and kids songs and simplified versions. I was extraordinarily frustrated. All of a sudden, she began giving me better music, and I began to practice and actually care.

    A good teacher also needs to be excited by his/her students (when they deserve it). My teacher is genuinely excited about my progress. She is proud of me, and now she regularly tells me so.

    A good teacher also needs to help his/her students. My teacher always has referred gigs to me that she couldn’t or wouldn’t play. When I found myself in an orchestra with kids from Julliard and Oberlin in the middle of high school, she helped me go over my 101 pages of music and gave me tips on playing in orchestras. She wasn’t formally teaching that week due to weddings, but she welcomed me in for a couple lessons that week. She had me come in at noon one day and told me I could stay all afternoon–at no charge. I am going away to college next year, and she is excited at seeing where I end up. She talks about finding me the best teacher in the area.

    #83472
    unknown-user
    Participant

    hello , i had tow harp teachers both of them russian, the first was in damascus she was not qualified teacher she was young and had no experiences in teaching was horrable for me to study with her, and my second great teacher was in saint- petersburg, russia, she is a real pedagog by all the meaning of this word , she taught me how to make a high quality sound of the harp, she was like my mother she loved all of her students, she is 50 old, and

    #83473
    unknown-user
    Participant

    A good teacher looks at each student as a unique individual with unique physical abilities.

    #83474
    Renee Singlemann
    Participant

    I think what makes a great teacher depends on where you are in your musical ability.

    #83475
    Michael Harwood
    Participant

    After laboring under the difficult chore of trying to find a local harp instructor for my neive who lives in El Paso, Texas I would have to say that the best harp instructor would be willing to meet a student where they are and be willing to take them as far in whatever direction

    #83476
    Minnesota Harpist
    Participant

    Caring.

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