These days, it seems harder and harder for parents to find ways to increase their children’s confidence. Kids nowadays tend to come across many more challenges to growing up confident and secure than they find reasons to grow in confidence.
But confidence is one of the most important attributes we parents can help our kids develop.
The successful leaders in our society are people who developed self-assurance, and/or found ways to overcome obstacles and beat their early lack of confidence.
What doesn’t seem to work is the recent trend toward “praise for participation.” Don’t get me wrong: Praising your kids is always important. But for the praise to build your child’s confidence, it needs to come on the heels of achievement, not just participation.
More and more parents are learning this valuable lesson, and I think that’s why our enrollment at Littleton School of Music has just-about doubled in the last year-and-a-half (during a time when threats to a kid’s confidence have been, many would say, at an all-time high).
Increasingly, parents are learning that they can give their kids a significant boost in confidence and self-assurance through providing those kids with music lessons.
Music Lessons Aren’t Really (Or Only) About Music
Here’s a quote from my book, Fall In Love With Music:
Music lessons provide a platform for children, teens, and adults to set goals and watch them unfurl in front of their eyes. The skills learned in a music lesson or during a recital are applicable outside of the realm of just music…. attention span… practice habits… music lessons teach students the value of completing a task once it is started… a valuable skill that helps mold a student into a successful and motivated person later in life.
For these reasons, we’re seeing higher test scores and grades at school, better self-direction, much better-developed problem-solving skills, and in general, higher confidence in the kids whose parents provide them with professional music lessons.
(I’d be happy to send you a free copy of my book, simply for the asking.)
It’s About Achievement
At Littleton School of Music, students learn music and work toward mastering their instrument, whether that’s a keyboard, a trumpet, or simply their singing voice. But they also learn so much more.
The value of practice, work, and effort… the energy and focus required to improve skill… the exhilaration of accomplishing something they couldn’t accomplish before. But perhaps more than anything else, our students learn something valuable about themselves.
They learn that, if they put their mind and effort to it, they can achieve great things.
We reinforce these learnings, of course, and one of the best tools we use to bolster our students’ confidence is our “Musical Ladder System.” Our top-notch instructors test students periodically, and when students progress to higher levels of proficiency, they earn wristbands, certificates, and trophies.
The keyword is earn. These students are given nothing. What they take home from our school, they’ve earned. And they know it. That’s where true confidence comes from, and how music lessons can help develop it in your kids.
Those trophies and certificates occupy special places on bookcases, mantles, walls, and desks all over Littleton (and beyond). They sit where no “participation ribbon” would be allowed to sit!
If nothing else, the fact that Littleton School of Music helps a student maximize their chances of being “a successful and motivated person later in life” makes our efforts worthwhile.
We’re going to need confident folks running the world when we’re old!
In partnership with Mile High Mamas.