Keep it Positive
When teaching, tell students what TO do as opposed to what NOT to do. I constantly hear teachers telling students negative commands: Don't tongue sloppy, Don't breathe there. How much easier is it to learn when a student hears: "Try tonguing like this" (and then show an aural example and explain what you are doing) or " Consider breathing here because the phrase is longer, if you need a catch breath, try this spot instead." Another positive comment about breathing might be "consider playing softer so you can make the long phrase and as you get confidence, play a little louder". Notice the difference in your own reaction to reading a negative command based statement versus a positive solution based statement. Good teaching is positive and supportive, and does not break down the student. There are times to 'wake up' a recalcitrant student, but again, keeping it positive and kind is always the best choice.
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