Category: 友好/學生投稿

學生家長的一篇文章

[anti-rclick]July 15, 2011

這篇貼文是我的一位學生Joy的媽媽Vivien寫的。我非常感謝她寫下這篇文章,讀到時也很感動。

原文 (英文版): Vivien Tok (“Write-up: Sharing on Joy’s Piano Learning Journey”)
翻譯 (中文版): Tsui Tik Wei


撰文表揚:分享Joy的鋼琴學習歷程

Joy在大約四年前開始學琴,她當時差不多六歲。像很多孩子一樣,她剛學到用鋼琴彈奏音樂時充滿熱情。開始時,要讓她每天練琴並不難,因為初學者的樂曲都很容易掌握。但這些樂曲絕對能增強Joy的信心,激發她對彈琴的興趣。

學琴大約兩年之後,Joy有了很大進步,是時候要彈奏難度更高的樂曲。每天的練習開始把她壓得透不過氣來,也慢慢削弱了她對彈琴的興趣。她開始感到氣餒。好像無論她怎樣努力,總是彈得不夠好,達不到老師的期望。更不巧的是,她的老師老是拿她的表現和成績跟她的弟弟比較,而弟弟好像總是比她彈得好。慢慢地,Joy開始對彈琴失去興趣。她想完全放棄學琴。那我同意嗎?當然不!我都已經給她買了一座鋼琴,讓她上了整整兩年的課,並每天拿出耐性來陪她練琴。投入了這麼多金錢、時間和體力後,她怎能輕言放棄?最重要的是,我覺得如果在那個時候就讓她放棄學琴,就是把她的音樂天份浪費了。她怎能夠在碰上這樣的小挫折後就輕易放棄了?分析過情況之後,我得出的結論是她的第一位鋼琴老師可能沒有足夠經驗讓她對彈琴保持興趣,而要讓她更樂於學琴的最好方法就是找個更具資格、更有耐性及經驗的老師。我終能說服她繼續學琴,但答應她能以自己的步調學習,我不會強逼她參加任何她不想參加的鋼琴考試。

我成功給Joy找了個新的鋼琴老師,她是一位朋友大力推薦的,說她很有耐性和愛心,此外我還希望新老師能讓Joy重拾對音樂和鋼琴的興趣。開始時,這位新老師和Joy相處得挺不錯。Joy開始喜歡上課,也慢慢再喜歡彈琴。我高興得很,雖然要長途跋涉到老師的家,和付高很多的學費。真希望我可以說之後的一切都順順利利,Joy就此愛上鋼琴等等。但事實並非如此。

新老師在幾課之後,就提議Joy參加鋼琴考試。她看到Joy有很大潛質,希望為Joy準備參加她完全沒預備好要應付的等級考試。Joy抗拒這個提議,但最後老師還是成功說服了她接受挑戰。她馬上就為考試辛勤練習,被各種要求壓得喘不過氣來。不久,不間斷的練習及熟習考試樂曲的需要慢慢扼殺了她學琴的興趣,她變得興味索然。我猜擺出冷淡的態度是她應付壓力的方法。Joy的老師把她認定為敷衍懶散和不負責任,我也感覺到她們之間的關係越來越緊張。我當時是希望情況會慢慢改善,但事實不然。那只是我一廂情願的想法。事實上,Joy開始被罰留堂時情況變得更差。輪到她弟弟跟老師上課時,她被逼用另一座鋼琴練習樂曲。Joy非常不開心,有幾次還哭起來。這時候,我知道不給她找位新老師的話,就要尊重她放棄學琴的決定了。

最後,我決定為她找另一位老師。

又一次得忙亂地找新老師。但這次我知道這可能是我最後一次這樣做了,因為我已經決定了如果新的安排也不如意,就讓Joy放棄學琴好了。我把想法清楚地告訴她,她也同意作最後一次嘗試。我想在她內心深處,她還是喜歡彈琴,並希望找到一位能在學習鋼琴的旅途上明白她的掙扎、諒解她的軟弱,並能幫助她跨越障礙的老師。

這一次,我不靠朋友的介紹,而是在網絡世界四處尋找新老師。

我在網上找到幾位合適的老師,並以電郵和他們聯絡。很快我就選定了黃老師。透過我們的電郵,我能感受到她對教學所抱的熱情和誠意。我還記得我跟她坦誠地訴說了我在鼓勵和幫助孩子培養對彈琴的喜好時所面對的挑戰、他們對學琴的抗拒態度和他們會給將來的老師帶來的問題。其實我已有心理準備,會以「對不起,太太,我可能不是適合你孩子的老師」這樣的藉口被婉拒。我肯定在有選擇的情況下,沒有老師會想給自己添個「麻煩」學生。所以當黃老師回覆說她願意教導我的孩子時,我喜出望外。我不禁想為甚麼我把孩子的棘手問題告訴她之後,她還會願意接受這個挑戰。我真欣賞她的勇氣!

我們都很滿意新的課堂安排。黃老師的琴室很近我們的家,孩子(也包括我)很高興他們不用花長時間上下課。只是上了幾堂,已看到Joy很快就和黃老師熟絡起來,讓我感到鼓舞。Joy是個非常敏感的女孩,能看出黃老師在嘗試啟發她的潛能時態度真誠。我確信她意會到黃老師不是那種只會指出一首樂曲可以怎樣彈的老師,她還會在學生熟習樂曲的過程中陪伴他們。有時候她會把一個難度更高的挑戰分成幾個小部分,以幫助Joy克服她的障礙。她給予Joy所需的支持和協助,幫助她進步,讓她彈起琴來感到簡單容易得多。我欣喜地看著Joy的鋼琴課從充滿痛苦、掙扎和挫敗的課堂,變得很有樂趣、有滿足感和愉快。不,請不要誤以為Joy現在的學習路途就一帆風順了。當然不是!Joy有些時候還是要被督促練琴,另一些時候她因為沒有為上課做好準備而被責罵。但快樂的時間總比痛苦的多。

在過去的14個月Joy一直接受黃老師的教導,我看到的最大改變是她的學習態度。看到她去打開鋼琴作日常練習,不會拖拖拉拉,真的給我很大鼓舞。她有時候還會自動自覺練琴呢!更讓我振奮的是看到她如何努力熟習樂曲(尤其是她喜歡的那些),並用她的小手指彈奏出美妙的音樂。她不就是以前那個被叫去練琴時總是拖延和吵鬧的小女孩嗎?她以前不是只顧著按下琴鍵、屈曲手指,心裡光想著盡快完成每天例行練習,毫不在意自己製造的「噪音」的嗎?我高興嗎?當然!每次想到Joy的進步,我就很雀躍。我真的很好奇想知道黃老師到底(背著我 :))做了甚麼,成功激勵和啟發我的小女兒了。


可愛的Joy


我很感激黃老師提供了一個適當的平台,讓Joy能增強她彈琴的信心,並幫助她達到現在這個水平。真的由衷感謝你,黃老師。感謝你為培養我兩個孩子和所有由你教導的學生成為未來鋼琴家而付出的努力、獻出的一切和所作的犧牲,我向你致敬。願主祝福你,為著你奉獻出自己來培養新一代音樂家。


Vivien Tok




Vivien,我也向你致敬,因為你這麼支持我的學生、你的孩子,並在過去一年和我一起為孩子跨越重重難關。謝謝你。

而對於那些仍為孩子的鋼琴學習在苦苦掙扎的父母們,嘗試主動作出改變,找出究竟孩子學習是什麼問題或尋找另一位老師吧(不一定是我!)!


Teresa Wong 黃穎妍


以下可欣賞Joy的彈奏:
Joy Chan: Pachelbel’s Canon in D
Joy Chan: Stroll On
Joy Chan: “Wilder Reiter”


教學感想 II


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A Post by A Student’s Parent

[anti-rclick]July 6, 2011

中文版: 學生家長的一篇文章

This post is written by my student Joy’s parent, Vivien. I deeply appreciate her effort in writing this and am very touched to read this.


Write-up: Sharing on Joy’s Piano Learning Journey

Joy started learning to play the piano about four years ago, just before she turned six. Like many other young children, she was full of enthusiasm when she was first introduced to music making on the piano. At the start, it wasn’t difficult to get her to practice the piano on a daily basis as the beginner’s piano pieces were pretty easy to master. But these beginner pieces certainly served as confidence boasters and helped to spark her interest in playing piano.


After about two years of learning to play the piano, Joy made some significant progress and was expected to play the more difficult pieces. The daily drill & practice started to overwhelm her and take a toll on her interest. She began to feel discouraged. It seemed that no matter how hard she worked, she couldn’t play the pieces well enough to live up to her teacher’s expectations. It didn’t help when her teacher always compared her performance and achievements with her younger brother, who always seemed to play better than her. Slowly, Joy started to lose interest in piano. She requested to drop piano completely. Well, did I agree? Certainly not! Not after I had bought her a piano, put her through two full years of piano instruction and sat through her daily piano practices. How could she give up so easily after all the investments, time and energy that I had put in? Above all, I felt that her musical talents would go to waste if I were to let her quit piano at that point. How could she give up so easily when faced with small setbacks like this? After analysing the situation, I concluded that her first piano teacher might not be experienced enough to sustain her interest in piano and the best way to improve her piano learning experience was to find her a more qualified, patient and experienced piano teacher. I managed to persuade her to continue her piano education on the condition that she could learn piano at her pace and I would not push her to sit for any piano exams if she didn’t want to.


I managed to find Joy a new piano teacher, who was strongly recommended by a friend as being a patient and loving, and hoped that the new teacher could help to rekindle Joy’s love for music and piano. In the beginning, this new piano teacher got along pretty well with Joy. Joy started to enjoy piano lessons and was beginning to like playing the piano once again. I was extremely happy although it meant that I had to travel a long distance to the teacher’s home and paid a much higher tuition fees. I wish I could tell you that all things went fine and Joy fell in love with piano and such. But it wasn’t so.


After a few lessons under the instruction of the new piano teacher, she suggested that Joy sit for piano exam. In fact, the teacher saw great potential in Joy and wanted to prepare her to sit for a grade exam that she was totally unready for. Joy was resistant to the idea but was eventually persuaded by her teacher to take the challenge. A lot of hard work pursued straight after that in preparation for the exam and Joy was stressed up by the demands. Before long, the constant need to practice and perfect the exam pieces slowly killed her joy of learning and she became apathetic. I guess apathy was her way of coping with stress. Joy’s teacher started to label her as slack and irresponsible and I could to sense the tension that was building up. I was hoping that things would get better over time, but it didn’t. It was wishful thinking on my side. In fact, the situation got even worse when Joy started being held in detention after her lessons. She was made to practice the music pieces on another piano when it was her brother’s turn to have lessons with the teacher. Joy felt extremely miserable and even cried on a few occasions. By then, I knew it was time to either get her a new piano teacher or respect her decision to quit piano.


In the end, I decided to find her another teacher.


It was another frantic search for a new teacher. But this round I knew that it might be my last time doing so as I had already made up my mind to let Joy quit piano if the new arrangement didn’t work out. This decision was clearly communicated to her and she willing agreed to give it a final go. I guess deep within her, she still loved playing the piano and was hoping to find a teacher who could understand the struggles, empathise with her weaknesses and help her to overcome the hurdles that she encountered along her piano learning journey.


This round, instead of relying on recommendations from friends, I surfed the internet in search of a new piano teacher. I managed to locate a few qualified teachers on the net and contacted them via emails. It didn’t take long for me to zero in on Ms Wong. I could sense her passion and sincerity in teaching through the email correspondences that we had. I could still remember that I honestly shared with her the challenges I faced in motivating and helping my kids to develop a love for playing piano, the negative attitude that they had towards learning and the problems they would pose to their potential piano teacher. In fact, I was prepared to be rejected with the excuse, “Sorry madam, but I might not be the right teacher for your child.” I’m sure there is no teacher who wants to have “difficult” students if she is given a choice, right? So I was pleasantly surprised when Ms Wong replied to say that she was willing to take my kids as her students. I couldn’t help wondering why she still took up the challenge after I had presented my kids as such a tough case. I really admired her guts!


The new arrangement certainly worked out well for us. Ms Wong’s studio was just a stone throw from our residence and the children (and me included) loved the idea that they didn’t have to spend long hours travelling to and from piano classes. It was heartening to see Joy warm up to Ms Wong pretty quickly after a few lessons. Being a very sensitive girl, Joy was able to see Ms Wong’s sincerity in trying to unlock the potential within her. I am sure she realised that Ms Wong wasn’t the kind of teacher who simply points out how a music piece could be played, but she also “walks” together with her students to master the piece. At times, she will break down a more challenging task into smaller tasks in order to help Joy overcome her “obstacles”. She makes music playing a lot simpler and more attainable for Joy by providing the scaffolds that she needs to help her make progress. In fact, I watch with delight at how Joy’s piano learning experience transforms from one that was filled with pain, struggles and dejection to one that is joyful, fulfilling and enjoyable. No, please don’t get me wrong and think that her learning path is now a bed of roses. Certainly not! There’re still days that Joy needed to be nudged to practice her piano and there’re also days when she wasn’t well prepared for lessons and was ticked off. But there’re definitely a lot more good days than bad ones.


In the past 14 months that Joy was under Ms Wong’s instruction, the greatest change that I observed is her learning attitude. It’s really encouraging to see how she will open up the piano to do her daily practices without dragging her feet. At times, she even practices the piano on her own accord! It’s even more heartening to see how she takes the effort to try to perfect the pieces (especially those she loves) and produces those lovely music with her little fingers. Wasn’t this the same little girl who was constantly procrastinating and arguing when she was asked to practice the piano? Wasn’t this the same little girl who was only too eager to complete her daily routine by hitting the notes and flexing her fingers, totally oblivious to the “noises” that she was making? Am I glad? Certainly! My heart leaps with joy whenever I think of the progress Joy is making. Well, I really wonder what exactly Ms Wong has done (behind my back :)) to help motivate and inspire my little girl.


My Lovely Student Joy



I’m so grateful to Ms Wong for providing the right platform for Joy to build up her confidence in piano playing and for assisting her to reach the stage of piano playing that she is at now. Indeed, thank you Ms Wong, from the bottom of my heart. For all the hard work, dedication and sacrifices that you have put in to make budding musicians out of my two kids and all the students under your instruction, I salute you. May God bless you abundantly as you give of yourself to help nurture a future generation of musicians.


Vivien Tok



Vivien, I also salute you in being such a supportive parent to my students, as we have gone through much thick and thin together for the kids in the past year. Thank you.


And for those parents who are still struggling with their kids’ piano learning, go ahead and take the initiative to change, to figure out what exactly the problem is or find another teacher (not necessarily me!)!


Teresa Wong


You can watch some of Joy’s videos here:
Joy Chan: Pachelbel’s Canon in D
Joy Chan: Stroll On
Joy Chan: “Wilder Reiter”

教學感想 II


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鋼琴是用鋼造的嗎?

[anti-rclick]我歡迎學生和音樂友好投稿有關鋼琴音樂的文章,與讀者分享音樂知識。以下是由 Peter Ngan 提供的有趣文章:

鋼琴是用鋼造的嗎?為什麼鋼琴叫「鋼」琴呢?她很重,一部小型三角琴閒閒地都要三百多公斤重;有多少是用鋼造的呢?

她有一個堅固的身體, 多數是堅硬的楓木(maple) 或櫸木(beech);如果你看見一部紅色的琴,那麼她是由桃花心木 (mahogany) 所造。堅固的身體是要讓她不會產生無謂的共鳴,把琴絃震動的能量都吸走了。我們要把琴絃震動的能量留給共鳴板(soundboard),讓他把震動能量散射到空氣中,那就是琴聲了。所以,共鳴板對琴聲有決定性的影響。

提到共鳴板,那是一塊又大又平呈淺黃色的雲杉木(spruce) 安裝在弦的底下。你會見到他有一條條緊密整齊的直紋,那是雲杉樹幹用徑切法(quartersawn) ,令樹木的年輪整齊地排在一個平面上而成。由於雲杉木堅硬而輕巧,被廣泛用於不同樂器的共鳴板之中,包括:吉他、小提琴等。

到底一部鋼琴有多少部份是由鋼造的呢?揭開琴蓋,我們可以看見有數以百計的琴弦繫於一個大金屬架上。這個金屬架會不會就是傳說中鋼琴的鋼鐵部份呢?很抱歉,那是鑄鐵來的。鑄鐵會不會是就是鋼鐵花巧一些的名稱啊?呵呵呵…我們知道在煉鐵時加入一些碳可以令鐵變得更堅硬,這也就是合金的一種。碳越多,越堅硬,但會變得越脆(brittle) 。碳含量介乎0.2-2.1%的合金就是鋼了。鋼有彈性(ductile),那絕不是造這個架的材料。我們需要一個堅硬到即使受著數以噸計的拉力仍然不會稍稍變形的物料來造這個弦架。讀者們,那是數百條的弦緊緊地繫在架上,很要命的呀!如果弦架在調音時因為一條弦張力的改變而變形就會影響到其餘數百條弦的張力了,那麼我們永世也不能調好一這個琴。鋼琴(pianoforte) 的前身古鋼琴(fortepiano) 的弦架用木造,不能承受太大的拉力,不能用太多和較粗的弦,也較易變形,所以音準和音量都比較差。李斯特就經常彈爛琴,在演出時要預備一個後備琴。那麼鑄鐵是什麼呢?鑄鐵是含碳介乎2.1-4%,含硅1-3%的鐵合金。由於極度堅硬易碎,必須原件鑄造。我們不可鑄成後再改變其形狀,否則它會碎裂。他就如此的倔強,造就了一個弦架。

說了那麼久,還是找不到鋼鐵的蹤跡。你不累,我都累了。在這裡打住,你一定不會放過我的。好!我就告訴你吧。我們在鋼琴中所能夠找到用鋼造的主要部件就只有琴弦。不是説鋼有彈性嗎?這就恰恰是琴弦所需要的其中一個特性了。不過說鋼琴之所以叫「鋼」琴是因為她的弦用鋼造,真的有點兒那個。若然如此,小提琴呀、吉他呀也要叫做「鋼」琴了。

我估計那是因為鋼琴傳入中國時,正是鋼鐵大行其道之時,一些舶來品都很易冠上一個鋼字。問問鋼筆為什麼叫鋼筆吧;我們不是在十年前都爭著在尾部加上一個 “.com” 嗎?




揭開琴蓋,我們可以看見有數以百計的琴弦繫於一個大金屬架上,這個金屬架就是由鑄鐵所造。




共鳴板(Soundboard)是一塊又大又平呈淺黃色的雲杉木(Spruce)安裝在弦的底下。細心觀看可以看見一條條平行的木紋。平行的木紋是樹幹用 Quarter Sawing 造成。




由於雲杉木堅硬而輕巧,被廣泛用於不同樂器的共鳴板之中,包括:吉他、小提琴。圖中所示就是吉他的共鳴板。



Peter Ngan
九月十五日


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