I made an obervation this weekend in preparation for attending, or rather NOT attending guitar lessons with my son. We began taking guitar a few months back as a fun activity that we could practice together. I always wanted to learn, but never made the time for it. I felt that this was the perfect way to do it. Our main focus is to have fun. So, we don't have specific goals except to continue playing and to get better.
Saturdays are very busy for us. There is always something to do, and we have a ton of excuses that can be made each and EVERY weekend to keep us from getting into the car and making the trip to Locals Music to see "Mr. Dan." Of course, my son is 6, and he has a lot of really GOOD and creative excuses as well. :)
This Saturday was one of those times. I began to dig for an excuse. I even went as far as e-mailing our instructor that we would not be attending. Then, I began to think of the example that I would be setting for my son by staying home instead of honoring our commitments to 1.) Continue playing and 2.) To get better. After all, we are in this together. We decided to go and are each happier/one step closer to being rockstars because of it.
Every parent faces these kinds of choices daily. As a martial arts teacher, I have these types of conversations with parents every week. Many parents will say that their kids like the classes when they get to the academy, but that it is challenging to get them there and INSERT EXCUSE HERE. I encourage the parents to stay the course, and then share some tips on how to do so. I will list some here:
2.) Make sure to talk about your child's class in the car on the ride there. Ask them about their goals, if they have any stripes/rewards that they would like to achieve, what the "circley kick" is called, etc. This shows interest in their activity, and your kids will be more likely to stick with it if mom and dad think that their training is important.
3.) Rather than going to the store, spend at least every other class at the academy watching your child. This will give you more to talk about if you know what is going on in their program. Parents are less likely to let their children quit when they know the life-lessons that their child learns in class as well.