Before I get into the benefits of work ethic, and how starting an instrument at a young age is beneficial. I would like to share a bit about myself and experience. I have been teaching piano for a little over 6 years, and have had multiple students throughout that entire time. In this article I am going to share with you some of the clear benefits I have seen in my experiences.
Parents say it millions of times, "hard work pays off." A person really will learn and understand this true value as they get older and experience it first hand. Getting them introduced and started on it at a young age can have profound benefits. Everyone does learn at their own pace, and some skills may take longer to develop for certain people, but I believe it can be taught at a young age. Below I will share with you one example, and I have many others that are quite similar to the one below that can help support my thesis.
I had a student who started with me at the age of 7. For about two years this particular student had about as much practice habit as a goldfish has memory (little to none). After years of little improvement, and countless attempts for me to start getting her to practice it finally started to pay off. She started practicing and improving dramatically. I also noticed she started receiving awards and excellent grades in school. Do these two things correlate? I do not have the credentials to say they do, but what I can tell you is what I saw. She now is 11 and is continuing to get the highest grades in her class, and is still improving into more advanced piano pieces.
How I Make It Work - The Secret Sauce
This could be an entire article itself, but I will keep this short and simple. Making it work took me a few years, and I am by no means an expert at teaching work ethic, but I will share with you one of my tips that I have found to make it much easier.
MAKE IT FUN! This is the secret sauce. This works not only for teaching kids how to play piano, and helps get them through the mundane process of learning how to read notes, but can be used for any boring task. Below I have given one example of how I make it fun for piano, and once again I have several other examples.
Example - For the note reading process I have come up with games that me and my students play that they find fun, and they are learning at the same time. One game I do is tic tac toe (note Reading) I point to a note on the staff, and if they get the note correct they get an X for their tic tac toe score. If they get it wrong I get an O. The kids love this game, and they often ask "can we play again?"