BY M. A. LEWIS.
Let me extend the right hand of fellowship, and greet you, earnest workers, in a profession well worth our best efforts. We are working not only for mere dollars and cents, but for eternity.
Let me call your attention to a few points which may prove a help to young teachers. We must be close students of human nature, keeping abreast of musical literature, surround ourselves with the best musical magazines, and learn to cull the most important items and make them our own; never rest satisfied with ourselves, never fail to learn from others, never cling to one especial plan of our own. Be ready to receive instruction as well as to give it. Understand the peculiar nature of each pupil; what will help one, will fail with another. Be patient, and over and over again lay a firm foundation. Do not be in a hurry to show off your pupils. Strive to have more in the head than in the fingers. Teach them to think, awaken their musical soul, and help them to see glimpses of beauty in a plain exercise, and stepping-stones to musical wonders from the constant practice of the scales. Teach them to be faithful in the “little things” of music, and the reward is great.
Do not be hasty in forming an opinion of a pupil. Be watchful. The mere desire to attempt study so difficult shows the love for it, and perhaps an abundance of talent, needing only the encouragement of an earnest teacher to bring it to the front. Rouse their ambition to do their very best, making the most of themselves and their opportunities. Three giants we must meet and battle with,—False Reading, False Time, False Fingering. Kill them, if possible, the quicker the better. Finally, remember Mendelsshon’s (sic) answer when asked what was required to make a fine performer: “Three things: first, head; second, heart; third, fingers.” Time is up; I must stop.