You took the big step, and your child is now taking lessons and practicing piano at home. The lessons seem to be going well but the teacher is stressing the importance of home practice in between lessons. But how much practice time is enough? This question needs to be answered based on the teacher’s recommendation and the individual student. Remember, every child learning piano is different, and the teacher should be able to help you identify the student’s learning style and customize the piano practice schedule accordingly.
THE IDEA IS TO HAVE FUN
Here is the thing you must always remember: Playing a piano is supposed to be fun. You and the child’s teacher should be focused on the goal of making music a fun, lifelong hobby. It certainly takes some hard work to get good at it, but the trick is to make the work seem like fun. If practicing piano becomes drudgery, there’s no way you are going to keep a six-year-old interested and motivated.
PRACTICE GUIDELINES TO FOLLOW
In our experience at SoCal Pianos in Ontario & Palm Desert, CA (appointment only at both locations) most teachers will say children learning piano should practice six days a week. The length of the practice session is largely dependent on the child’s age.
- Ages 3 & 4—10 minutes
- Ages 5 & 6—15 minutes
- Ages 7 & 8— 20 minutes
- Ages 9 & 10—25 minutes
- Ages 11-14—30 minutes
Certainly, the practice time can be adjusted. If, for example, there is a recital coming up you might want to make the practice time a bit longer.
REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS ARE IMPORTANT
Many children love to play basketball or go to the park and play tennis. Very few of them have the ability and/or are willing to do the hard work to become truly great. Keep that in mind when it comes to children learning piano. If it becomes obvious your child is one of the lucky ones, you can consider longer and more intense sessions to practice piano. Just always remember, you can’t force children into learning piano. Even those with musical skills may not love the piano and will have other things that are more important than practicing piano. Wherever the piano lessons take your child, whether it’s junior high or Juilliard, SoCal Piano is always here to help at our showrooms in Ontario & Palm Desert, CA (appointment only at both locations).