Music Education Philosophy
At Crossroads Music Center, all forms of music converge! Nobody is too young or too old to learn music and to make it a part of their lives. No style of music is overlooked in a well rounded music education. Music is an important discipline for all ages that encourages growth and stability in other aspects of life. We have worked with children as young as three years of age with the understanding that, like it is with language, children need to be exposed to a musical environment early on so they can acquire skill introductions at a crucial period of their development. On the opposite extreme, we have worked with retirees as far along in life as the age of eighty-three. This is a great period in some people’s lives to finally spend time on themselves, and to develop the music skills they’ve always hoped to pursue. Of course, music instruction and development is applicable at any age, and the benefits go far beyond being able to play a song on the guitar!
At Crossroads, we adhere to the philosophy that routine and structure create self discipline in music skills development. We like to provide students with all that music has to offer and not just limit instruction to the typical guitar shop ‘learning by showing’ method. Through regular attendance and daily practice, students will develop music skills at a steady rate that will enable them to tackle any music challenges that come their way. Also, we do not avoid educating our students in reading and writing music notation, as this is the most developed form of communicating composition, exercises, and theory.
At Crossroads we provide group classes and performance opportunities. Even the best solo artists have benefited from working in ensembles, orchestras, groups, and bands. The group experience creates foundations in any style of music through collaboration, peer support, shared experience, and goal oriented learning. Crossroads is offering, and strongly encourages participation in, group sessions for all instruments and all ages. Also, every student has the option to perform repertoire in a recital which can be organized after the completion of an instructor recommended goal (e.g., finishing a method book). The benefits of learning and polishing a set of repertoire to be performed for an audience is perhaps the most motivating goal for a student to have. Some of the best work we have seen from students results from when they have a performance planned whether it is a solo or group recital/concert.
Finally, music education needs to be supported through the encouragement and through the involvement of parents, family, and friends outside of the teacher-student relationship. Parents of young students should be as involved as possible in their child’s music education by not only making sure the student is making a daily routine of practicing; but also by sitting in on lessons and discussing expectations with the teacher. This allows parents to be informed on what students should be working. Parents should spend time at home sitting in on practice in order to help with any questions their child may have. Older students should play for family and friends as often as possible to gain important experience in performing and to expose important parts of music making that may only surface when the individual experience is demonstrated to an audience. Family and friends are the best audiences!!