Finding the Right Music Teacher for My Musical Genius

by TL with Genius
(Houston, TX)

I enjoyed reading your webpage and thank you for a list of your favorite resources and etc. I have a son that was diagnosed with a mild case of Autism before starting Kindergarten.

He is now 11 years old and has musical talent that I would love to nurure and grow with the right music teacher. He plays piano by ear. My concern is that he doesn't use the correct fingers, because he has never been taught...nevertheless he can play because he hears the music and somehow knows what key should be played to produce the sound.

Of course, I would love to find a good teacher that has the patience and understanding to teach him the fingering and note-reading skills to enhance what he knows how to do by "hearing" the music.

I am impressed by his abilities to play what he hears. His older sister was on the piano trying to play the sheet music to the National Anthem. She played up to one note she could not get the right key, so she did this a few times. Then suddenly he just went over to the piano and hit the right key for her, because he apparently could hear what note should be played and seemed a little annoyed that she couldn't play it.


Your son sounds very musical! It will be a challenge to get him to change the way he uses his fingers, no matter how creative his future teacher may be. It will take real effort on his part, and a desire to work with his teacher and see the LONG VIEW of things.

He will need to be convinced that exercises such as pentascales and Aloys Schmitt's finger exercises are FUN and will be good for his playing. These things will re-program the way his hands work.

So, your challenge is to find a teacher who understands what he/she is up against, and who is determined to make this re-programming an enjoyable experience! You will need to interview a number of teachers, I believe, in order to find a good match for your son.

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Response for Dana
by: TL with Genius

Hi Dana,

Thank you for your comments. At this point, I don't think it would be too difficult for him to learn the correct fingering, because he is not on the piano all the time. Of course, he wants to be on the piano more, so I am hoping to get him in lessons to practice the correct fingering.

Yes, finding the right teacher is challenging, but with prayer, research, and hopefully some references...I will get the right teacher with the patience, training and teaching skills needed for him to excel.

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