Training Musicians Like Dogs
How is learning an instrument like training a dog to roll over on command? Both involve a complex set of movements that must be done in sequence to achieve a desired task. Animal trainers have been using clickers to teach tricks for a long time, but some people are wondering if the same techniques can be useful to humans too.
Consider this story by NPR:
When Everything Clicks: The Power of Judgement-Free Learning
And this article from BulletProofMusician.com
A Better Way To Teach Complex Skills, Borrowed From… Doggy Training?
The authors of both of these stories highlight that positive reinforcement is a helpful tool when learning something new. They argue that clickers help to give immediate feedback when the person (or dog) is doing the right thing.
Or perhaps it should be the parents who use the clickers during practice?
Clearly, more research needs to be done, but I have some observations from my experience as a teacher:
The clickers are on sale at PetSmart for $1.99. Who wants to be my guinea pig this week in lessons? 😁
For more blog posts on learning and reinforcement, check out