Music lessons for at-risk youth: volunteer teacher perspectives
Abstract A basic interpretive qualitative research design (Merriam, 2002) was used to explore the perceptions and observations of volunteer piano teachers providing weekly piano lessons to at-risk youth. Four volunteer piano teachers from two prairie cities who volunteered teaching three twenty-minute piano lessons a week for at least one year in a local school-based program, Heart of the City Piano Program, were interviewed. Data were analyzed using thematic analysis. Findings included three themes about the perceived benefits of piano lessons for the students –student self-motivation, student confidence, student sense of accomplishment – as well as three themes about distinguishing characteristics of the piano lessons – student focussed lessons, allowing students to be themselves, and positive role model relationships. Findings are discussed in relation to current research on at-risk youth and music education, and recommendations for further research and implications for practice are included.
DegreeMaster of Education (M.Ed.)
DepartmentEducational Psychology and Special Education
ProgramEducational Psychology and Special Education
CommitteeClaypool, Timothy; Balzer, Geraldine
Copyright DateJune 2014
music, at-risk youth, piano, classical music, music lessons