Learning Music Ownership Part 2


in Learning Music

Sharing Music Knowledge is Not Enough

I struggle with the teachers philosophy that we can exchange a few words and knowledge to the student and expect results. It seems to me, a muddling through of the study and practice time is more the case than the exception.

We work with them and try to stir a desire to practice more, study harder, and focus on specific music elements to improve their playing abilities.

This brings me back to the ownership requirement. I can speak from personal experience that it is easy to slip into “I'll get to it later syndrome.” I've done it and continue to do it on numerous occasions.

When I had decided to take on a big project things suddenly changed for me. I wanted to learn the entire three movements of a 25 minute Beethoven Sonata, and that's when I moved into the ownership realm.

Focus On The Outcome

girl-play-pianoAn attitude change took place when I started focusing on the outcome. Approach didn't matter. I decided that I would break it down and go for it. I started with the phrases and sections that were easy to define in my mind as achievable pieces between music lessons.

Accomplished By Ownership

This focus and purpose put me in the chair of ownership. I was completely responsible for accomplishing the outcome I had created.

I would go to my lesson and my teacher would reinforce this ownership with a direct question:

“So Where Do We Go To Today?”

This question simply implied I was in control, and had possession of the direction we were going.

It wasn't her goal, it was all mine. Ownership was completely mine. Just that one statement told me I was the owner of my outcome.

The issue is to determine how do we get others to take that same ownership. I submit that it's in not defining the goals for the student. It's in having the student define the goals they are going after.

That will take some time to explore. Everyone of the members of the Music Learning Workshop  can achieve this standing by simply stating I want to (fill in the blank) and then take ownership for accomplishing that outcome.

Let's all take some time to think about our music outcomes and how our own ownership is the key to really making it happen.

Share your thoughts…

Pat May 18, 2009 at 5:30 am

Thanks for this thought provoker!  It’s one of the great advantages of being an adult learner….I do it for me!  and I set the goals.  One of my goals for the summer is to take more ownership of my music.  Not work just for the weekly hour I go to my teacher, but to focus on why am I doing this and what do I want from it and most of all how hard am I willing to work for what I want.  Ultimately if you don’t know where you are going it makes it difficult to travel the daily path.  Here’s to everyone finding and accomplishing their own outcomes.

Brad_C May 19, 2009 at 4:33 am

Great validation Pat,
You, like me, take the proactive approach. The adults get the sense of urgency to move forward because time becomes more valuable everyday. The younger students see it more like school and an obligation they have to “do”.

I take the approach of 15 minutes of focus is worth one hour of wondering around. Your objective of taking ownership over the next few months is what we all need to do. Sitting down and making a 2 week, 1 month, and 3 month list of goals will help you keep on track to do just that. Keep us updated on your journey and how and what things you did to take ownership.

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