Advanced search

Our SN area is not a substitute for expert advice. While many Mumsnetters have a specialist knowledge of special needs, if they post here they are posting as members, not experts. There are, however, lots of organisations that can help - some suggestions are listed here. If you've come across an organisation that you've found helpful, please tell us. Go to Special needs chat, Parents with disabilities, SN teens, SN legal, SN children, SN recommendations.

School said DC with ADD can't learn instrument!! Very cross!

(9 Posts)
Burntthedinneragain Sat 10-Oct-15 09:02:56

I am unspeakably cross!

My DC is 6 years old and has mild ADD but loves school and is well behaved and compliant. DC is perfectly capable of learning - can do the usuals such as reading (reading age of about 8.10), can do number bonds and quite a few times tables etc.

After 1/2 term of lessons the music teacher emailed to say that she no longer wishes to teach DC because despite trying very hard DC's "concentration is not at a level which helps maintain learning and therefore is not progressing as we would expect. This can obviously be discouraging for any child when learning something new."

This makes no sense to me whatsoever! Why should my DC not be permitted to learn an instrument because of a learning difficulty!? I am trying to be reasonable - I understand that progress may not be as quick as with some other children, but I am not asking for a Liszt recital within a term, I just want an enjoyable experience and a token bit of progress.

Many 3 & 4 year olds learn an instrument without a problem and DC has much better concentration than a 3/4 year old, so why should she be unwilling to teach DC? I feel that if DC is not progressing as she expects (or as fast as other children?) then teacher needs to adjust her expectations! And as for DC being discouraged, Surely any child can feel happy and proud of their progress if the lessons are set an appropriate level and praise and encouragement are given. Shouldn't I expect that attitude from the music teacher?

Surely this is a case of the teacher failing to teach rather than the child failing to learn? AIBU or is that attitude unacceptable?

(Would also like to point out that I am not one of THOSE precious parents who cannot admit their DC is crap at some things. and I do not want to sound as though I'm trying to say this is the greatest injustice the world has ever seen either!)

Advice / opinions welcome!

SanityClause Sat 10-Oct-15 09:08:22

She's giving up after half a term? What a crap teacher!

If your DD wants to continue, why don't you look at lessons outside the school?

(We continued on for far too long with a music teacher who was not right for DD2. If it isn't working with this woman, don't try and force it.)

Fabury72 Thu 24-Mar-16 00:52:24

Outrageous! What area is this? Who is providing the lessons.... so long as your daughter is enjoying herself and you are paying, then she should be taught. Although she does need to make sure she does some practise...

For the record my child has ADHD and learns three instruments...

Fabury72 Thu 24-Mar-16 00:55:42

Outrageous! What area is this? Who is providing the lessons.... so long as your daughter is enjoying herself and you are paying, then she should be taught. Although she does need to make sure she does some practise...

For the record my child has ADHD and learns three instruments...

AugustaFinkNottle Sat 26-Mar-16 07:25:01

Is this a teacher employed by the school? You could point out that this is discrimination on the grounds of disability.

Fabury72 Sat 26-Mar-16 18:03:36

burenthedinneragain.... what is happening with this ? x

madwomanbackintheattic Sat 26-Mar-16 18:21:57

Leave it for a year and try again. It sounds as though ds is not benefitting from the lessons. It may be different in a year or so.
<ds1 has add and whilst very keen to learn an instrument in theory, the year he spent actually attempting to do so was a waste of time and money. He liked the idea of being able to play, but was not in a position to put in the required practice at home in order to make any headway>
How is ds with his practice? Does he do it routinely every day without whining or distraction? How much practise is he doing a week? I found it very hard to get ds to do his practise, and as a result he was really not learning an instrument at all - he was just going along to some lessons. He was adamant he wanted to play, but the actual workload involved wasn't something he was capable of achieving due to the add.

If your ds is still keen, find a private instructor who is happy to take him on knowing that he is less likely to make the same progress as nt kids. With less pressure, you may find that your ds thrives and learns faster. It is hard in a school environment where their peers are learning new skills faster and moving ahead at a much greater rate. He may be ready in a year or two to join back in with the school lessons once he has mastered the basics.

<as well as ds, I also have dd2 who has cerebral palsy. She plays trombone in the school band. Despite being far more physically affected by her disability, the school have been great and encouraged her along the way - her brother is an entirely different kettle of fish, and I would not expect the school to support him in the way I expect them to support her, even though notionally they both have support needs as a result of disabilities. In this instance, his needs are best met in a different environment. Horses for courses, square peg in round hole, etc etc. school music lessons are not the right place for ds1.>

BackforGood Sat 26-Mar-16 18:30:05

I think 6 is too young for many dc to be learning an instrument.
Yes, I know there will be some who've taken to it like a duck to water, but there's an awful lot - I'd say probably the majority - who aren't ready.
As madwoman asks, have they been practising?
I'm also interested to know if it is a 1:1 lesson, or part of a group one, as that will make a difference to how much 'adjusting' and 'differentitation' the teacher is able to do in a short, 1x a week lesson.

LarrytheCucumber Wed 30-Mar-16 07:42:53

Hmm. You either need a different teacher or a different instrument. DS' brass teacher was really encouraging and helped him to enjoy playing even though he never managed to read music.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now