As the number of children suffering from anxiety steadily increases each year, Emily C. Fransen, a professor at the University of New Orleans and a private piano teacher for children and adults, believes teachers must adapt their skillsets to accommodate children who struggle with mental health issues.
The purpose of her article is to explore the different ways teachers can help students work through anxiety disorder while learning a musical instrument.
She recounts her personal story and that of a student, and discusses the effects of anxiety disorder on a student’s ability to perform in practice sessions, lessons, recitals, and competitions.
The article provides a method of “categorising” mistakes in order to facilitate reliable memorisation skills and more productive practice sessions. In addition, the article suggests that teachers allow for a more flexible approach to their teaching methods that will result in the building of trust between student and teacher.