Does your young child taking piano lessons or your piano student pause at each bar line in the music? Would you like to see them play through their music without these unnecessary interruptions? Here’s a simple way to help your child overcome the habit of stopping or pausing at the bar lines.
Here is a demonstration you can give your child, even if you don’t play the piano that will explain how the music should be played. Remember that when you child sees this demonstration they will stop pausing at the bar lines. So don’t worry or nag your child, or criticize their playing. Just perform this demonstration and they will get it.
You’ll need a large pitcher of water, several small Dixie cups, and a kitchen sink. Pour water from the pitcher into a Dixie cup. Then stop and put the cup down and fill another Dixie cup. Then stop and pick up another Dixie cup and fill it. Do this four or five more time. Then ask your child in piano lessons to imagine that the water in the pitcher is a song of music that they are playing. In order to pour out the whole song into Dixie cups you would have to stop pouring the water when each cup is full and put it down and pick up another cup to till it, etc., until all the pitcher was empty or the song was finished. If you imagine that each bar line and new measure is another Dixie cup to pour your song into you’ll have to stop at every measure to get another cup to fill. But we don’t pour music into Dixie cups do we? So we don’t need to pause at the bar lines.
Now pour all the Dixie cups of water back into the pitcher and show your student how to pour out the music when they play. Lift the pitcher high and gently pour out all of the water until the pitcher is empty. Take your student at home back to the piano to hear their song and as your child is playing, explain they don’t have to pause at the bar lines or each measure like they are Dixie cups. Just let the music your are playing pour right past the bar lines until you get to the end of the song and all the music on the page has been poured out.
Try this at home and I guarantee your child will flow through their music and remember the lesson of how to pour out the musical pitcher of water so that the music flows right past the bar lines.