NAFA School of Young Talents - Discussion

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NAFA School of Young Talents - Discussion

Postby AppleTree » Mon Sep 14, 2009 10:21 am

Hi, has anyone's child attended this course before? I am feeling terribly discouraged by them. My son has been admitted to NAFA and is now in G1. He diligently practise the piano at least 2-3hrs daily. Yet we get negative comments from the teacher everytime we go for lesson. ...My morale is super low now. Anyone has similar experience?

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Postby acforfamily » Mon Sep 14, 2009 10:43 am

Hi appletree,
I don't have personal experience with them but my friend whose child left Yamaha joined them a few years ago. Pretty similar to what you described as they are very demanding. The child scored one of the highest in the ABRSM but still did not do as 'well' in their NAFA internal exams. I guess that they are just very strict with their high standards, so don't be discouraged. The main thing I feel is that your child must still like music.

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Postby watmekiasu » Mon Sep 14, 2009 10:52 am

My child is not at NAFA but I've heard similar comments from other parents with children learning music in NAFA. It is extremely strict but the child will get their paper qualifications in no time, if that's your purpose.

I feel your pain but more importantly, how does your child feel about being put down despite so much effort being put in?

Imo, the whole purpose of learning music is to develope a lifelong love for and understanding of music. When the child doesn't enjoy the learning process anymore, it is time to take a step back and re-examine the situation.

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Postby radiantmum » Mon Sep 14, 2009 11:57 am

Just got to know recently as well that my friend's child left Yamaha JSAC for NAFA , finds NAFA demoralising and left. I suppose as long as kid can take that kind of stress and still likes music, that'll be fine. Otherwise, I will also rethink if that is the right place for him.

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Postby AppleTree » Tue Sep 15, 2009 9:43 am

Thks for all the reply. So I'm not the only one feeling :cry: depressed. I think my son is right now still too young to feel "demoralized". But he cried a couple of times during lesson due to the teacher's demand. You know how it feels to see your son being reprimanded so severely when he has put in so much effort into practises. It really really pains my heart. ...But on the other hand, he will get his grade much faster.... I am in so much dilemna...

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Postby ChiefKiasu » Tue Sep 15, 2009 9:51 am

AppleTree wrote:Thks for all the reply. So I'm not the only one feeling :cry: depressed. I think my son is right now still too young to feel "demoralized". But he cried a couple of times during lesson due to the teacher's demand. You know how it feels to see your son being reprimanded so severely when he has put in so much effort into practises. It really really pains my heart. ...But on the other hand, he will get his grade much faster.... I am in so much dilemna...


While I respect the professionalism of the NAFA teachers who have no doubt ensured that the students they churn out are top-notch, I fear that in their well-meaning attempts at instilling personal discipline and perfectionism for budding musicians, they may well extinguish any spark of natural-born interest in music that remain in the kids. In my very humble opinion, music should be loved, not feared. Is our intent on having our children learn music for them to pass music exams and win competitions?

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Postby acforfamily » Tue Sep 15, 2009 9:55 am

AppleTree wrote:But he cried a couple of times during lesson due to the teacher's demand.


My son went through this stage once with one of the teachers. Although he did not cry, I could see that he does not enjoy going to the lessons. Subsequently, I requested for a change of teachers. He is much happier now despite the fact that I can tell his current teacher may not be as musically talented as the previous one.

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Postby AppleTree » Tue Sep 15, 2009 9:59 am

I totally understand and agree that the utmost importance is for the child to love music and not be forced into it. ...But I am really in a dilemna. In NAFA, one parent must accompany the child for all his practical lesson. I have witness the technics taught to my son. It is really professional and impressive. I have previously sent my son to Cristofori and I have vouch for the difference in teaching. ...On one hand, I know NAFA can teach him well (without doubt), but on the other hand, even I (as a parent) is already feeling tired and demoralized, I wonder how we can last thru the whole 4years course....

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Postby EN » Thu Sep 17, 2009 8:50 pm

My son is not in NAFA but I saw how the teacher starts picking on him. He is in group class. Able to play the entire book while the rest are still struggling midway. Whenever others play their piece, struggle with mistake here and there, she simply say "good try, please practice more". When ds played his, he is to repeat again certain lines, re-play the whole piece and then she started to comment.

As I am present with him, I simply asked her to explain what need to be improved. So far, I understood what is required or where ds weakness point is. Just in case ds don't understand why he is being picked on. It is important for ds to understand that the teacher is trying to improve his playing and not pick on him to play without a valid reason.

For other student in the group, I think the teacher aim is to teach and play the piece. For ds, it is the next level of play to perfection.

Not sure is that what happen in NAFA too?

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Postby luckystar » Fri Sep 18, 2009 1:56 am

The result depends on one's expectation, if one do it for pleasure, one might not see much result.

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