Good Practice Isn’t Fun to Be Around

It’s important to realize that the behavior leads to good learning isn’t necessarily fun – or even pleasant – to be around.

The most effective practice is short, profoundly repetitive, detail-oriented work.

This is also the least fun to listen to. It can be deeply frustrating to be in earshot of 30 or 40 repetitions of a single challenging bar from a piano waltz.

But there is no denying the effectiveness of the results.

Recently my middle son sat for ten minutes while his young brother worked to solve a particularly tricky puzzle. He saw the solution but was prohibited by me from helping.

His experience was similarly unpleasant to hearing effective piano practice. But by letting his brother solve it himself, he provided  better learning.

As an educator, how comfortable are you with being around the unpleasant state of learning-in-progress?