My Grade 12 Data Management students complete a research project as part of the course. They create a questionnaire to help answer a question they’re interested in, or to look for relationships that bear further study.
While working with one student today to help develop that question, we talked about how she started to take guitar lessons but didn’t stick with it. She said that she regretted stopping the lessons, but that a part-time job and her own laziness got in the way. She expected that she would have been quite skilled by now had she put in the time over the past year.
I asked if she thought that experience was common, and how the music school offering the lessons might have made it easier for her to stay with it. She figured that a lot of people start lessons but don’t continue, and she had some suggestions for improvement that seemed reasonable as well.
Wouldn’t it be nice to know what the most common reasons are for quitting music lessons (and for sticking with lessons), and if there is a correlation between some other variable and perseverance? For example, do students without jobs stick with music lessons longer? What other factors play into persistence?
She might pursue this area of research for her project. I hope she does. I want to know the conclusions she draws from it, because it might have an impact on the way I teach math and computer science.