6 Effective Ways in Motivating Your Child to Practice and Learn More

It becomes more important for parents to properly motivate their children to succeed.

Ultimate Guitar

When practicing an instrument, at times, can feel very repetitive, tedious and even boring. This is particularly true with young musicians as it is easier for them to become distracted with other things or become unmotivated after practicing for a while. With there being so many distractions today, it becomes more important for parents to properly motivate their children to succeed.

Taking Breaks

When musicians are over-whelmed with other activities such as school, work, or chores, it distracts them from wanting to practice their instrument. Students should find time to practice within these responsibilities. As a parent, allow your child to take multiple breaks throughout their work to practice their instrument. Giving these breaks to your children makes practicing their instrument more exciting and looked forward to. These breaks can be short and very effective, for they wont be distracted with other things to do. I have seen 15 to 20 minutes work best for young students.


Another effective way in motivating your child to practice their instrument is by rewarding them. Rewarding a child with something is a great way to encourage them because your child will see the benefits of practicing as they will continue to improve as well as receive small rewards. In many cases, they will start to practice without needing a reminder. These rewards can be very simple such as treats like a piece of candy or taking them to the movies after a month of dedicated practice. Making sure your child continues a productive habit of practicing their instrument will mold them into being much better musicians.

Find a Teacher That Motivates Them

There are numerous music teachers that are not fully dedicated to expanding your child's talent as a musician. These types of people should not be allowed to teach anyone. Take the time to find an instructor that will push your child's music abilities in a fun and exciting way. Students should be excited to attend their lessons, should enjoy spending time with their instructor, and should be having fun growing in knowledge. There are many music stores, shops, schools that have great instructors who care about your child's ability in becoming the best musician they can be; why waste the money for one who doesn't?

Learn With Them

A child who see's their parents engaging in what they are learning makes it more exciting for the child. It can also be an incredible bonding experience. Take the time to participate in their music and practicing. Simply asking them about their lessons can help as well. Ask them to show you what they've learned, ask them to teach you about the content they learned from their lessons, and sign up for classes with your child. All of these things are extremely beneficial in motivating your child to keep practicing because it shows them that you're interested and that you care.

Have A Friend Join Them In Lessons

Children love doing anything with a friend; therefore, encourage your child to invite a friend to take lessons with him/her. This is a very effective way in making lessons more exciting to go to. And, having a friend with them in their group class allows for some friendly competition. Having your child being accompanied by a friend throughout lessons would allow their interest to grow in wanting to practice more. Sharing in lessons will lead your child and his/her friend to practice together.

Specify a Dedicated Practice Space

Having a dedicated and distraction free location to practice makes a huge difference. It works best for students to practice in the same space or room every day. If possible, this location should have no electronics where they can get distracted with television, games, computers and other things.

Encouraging your child to practice an instrument can be difficult with there being so many distractions, but when you know certain techniques to spark their interest, it can be very simple. Provide your child with exciting new ways to engage in practicing their instrument. With there being so many advantages to kids learning music, it would be unwise to not have your child learning music and practicing regularly. Take these six examples as a start, and I'm sure your child will begin to find the excitement they once had when they began to play.

If you have any questions about this article or anything else, please do not hesitate to contact us directly at zackATzackuidlDOTcom or zachATzachcannellaDOTcom and we will be sure to help in any way that we can. Be sure sure to check out zachcannella.com, zackuidl.com and paramountmusicacademy.com for more free things such as free guitar lessons, articles, videos, and ebooks!

By Zach Cannella and Zack Uidl

14 comments sorted by best / new / date

    How about just letting your children choose their own recreational activities that they're actually interested in? Music is supposed to be fun. If they don't want to play the guitar or piano etc. then let them go play baseball or whatever else they want to do so long as it's a healthy activity.
    Having gotten into music quite late, I should say, I'd rather have been forced into it pre-maturely by parents, it's not childhood trauma, the benefits far outweigh any negative aspects arising from this.
    link no1
    Not really. If I had been forced into it at a younger age I would have just done the exact same thing I did with every other hobby and activity I was forced into as a child, I.E as soon as I could I stopped doing and never looked back. Sure, I would have probably been better at this point if my parents would have forced me into guitar but I highly doubt I would have the same sense of pride as I do. I certainly wouldn't be on a guitar based website in my spare time if my elders turned a hobby into a chore.
    I should point out that it's generally agreed that giving children extrinsic motivation (material rewards and praise) lowers their interest level over the long term. Kids who are intrinsically motivated (they just like music) will eventually associate music playing with some reward or cheap praise that they know they don't deserve, which will drive them away from the activity. Nothing wrong with congratulating someone when they're doing it right, but stickers and candy don't do squat. There's a good reason I can't play any piano even though I took it for years as a kid.
    I love that my parents didn't force anything on me. I found what I loved, and that was music. If they had forced me to play piano or something as a kid, I probably wouldn't have my love for music today.
    I would love for my kids to want to play music; however, they don't have that drive. So I don't push or they'll hate it. I play while they do homework and my daughter loves it, but she doesn't have the drive to set time aside to practice and that's ok with me. They will do it if the want to.
    The problem with publishing an article like this here is that the majority of users aren't parents, I'd bet. This would be better posted on a parenting site.
    Taking breaks is also a great way to avoid frustration. There are also some good articles here on effective practicing that have helped motivate some of my students. After reading some of the comments I should point out that my parents forced me to practice when I was young and I am forever grateful. Great article, thanks.
    If there is any lack of enthusiasm I would encourage them to learn their favourite song or something they love on the current instrument. This might be enough to improve their own motivation, interest, confidence and overall enjoyment to learn and practise more.
    my parents wanted me 2 play piano and i hated it so i quit. totally traumatic...i love guitar tho.
    Or you could just let your kids do what they enjoy instead of forcing them to do something they hate, they'll probably remember that you forced them to do something they didn't like while growing up... :/ thankfully I love playing guitar so I don't need anyone to "motivate" me.