December 11, 2013

There is no substitute for having a teacher

This may be sacrilegious in some quarters, but I’m going to say it anyway.  There really is no substitute for having a teacher.  Now, before you write this week’s content as self-serving drivel from someone who makes money teaching, hear me out.  There are so many things about playing the harp that are challenging, why not learn someone who can save you the difficulty of learning those things the hard way?
Here are ten things teachers will do that will help improve your harp playing:
  1. Give you wisdom, gained at the knees of their teachers.
  2. Give you the benefit of their experiences.
  3. Provide you timely feedback that will help you spend less time learning (and then unlearning) things that are not productive.
  4. Provide you positive feedback that will allow you to focus on growing rather than have you smarting from falling backward.
  5. Although there are some very good books available, nothing is the same as having someone who’s walked the road before you to show you the ropes.
  6. Inspire you to grow to your full potential rather than letting you fester where you happen to be.
  7. Encourage you to stretch and grow, to achieve your potential and reach your goals.
  8. Coddle you when you hit the inevitable plateaus that are so disheartening.
  9. Give you their knowledge – they’ve been in your seat and left it behind…wouldn’t you like to move along too?
  10. Work with you, to help you develop yourself.
You need to find the teacher that fits you and there are plenty of really good ones around.  I highly encourage you to work with a teacher - you don’t have to commit to unending lessons and in the end, the progress you make will be a function of your hard work.  But a teacher can coach you through that progress so you can make good time on it!

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