The Four Stages of Learning is a theory modeling how we learn a new skill. The stages are:
Usually, students struggle to attain the fourth stage. It’s the difference between being able to do something the right way, and having that thing so ingrained that you can’t do it wrong. I explain it to my students this way: “Play it until I could come over to your house at two in the morning, wake you up, and you could still play it for me!” The main way to elevate any new technique is through mindful repetition. At first, your child will need to fully focus on the skill, but eventually they should be able to focus on the feeling of playing.
This idea is most useful for small, easily attainable goals. Each goal should be focused on one at a time, and every repetition should be precise! This way, only the right skills get to the fourth level.
- Shannon Jansma, published in the May 2016 issue of the Ann Arbor Suzuki Institute newsletter