Parmesan Playing

My kids are so excited to play instruments……It doesn’t matter how often we do it, they just get so excited… excited that they tend to bang excessively on the instruments reminders be damned.

Thus, “parmesan playing” was born.  My monologue goes like this:


“I don’t know about you but I just LOVE Italian food.  My favorite thing to do at an Italian restaurant is to sprinkle my food in parmesan cheese.  Does anyone else like parmesan cheese?”

The children ooh and ahh in agreement.

“Can anyone show me how to sprinkle parmesan cheese on their food?”

Multiple volunteers shoot up their hands and start showing off their sprinkling abilities.

“Awesome!  Now, when I eat a hamburger, I don’t want parmesan cheese on it.  I want ketchup instead but, sometimes, the ketchup gets stuck at the bottom of the bottle.  It’s SO hard to get out.  Has anyone else ever had that problem?”

“What do you do to get the ketchup out”

Inevitably, they act out slamming their invisible ketchup bottles in the air.

“Now, which one of those two movements are how you should play your instrument?”

Obvious answer is……”Parmesan playing!”


It’s amazing how much that randomly worked….so much so that I can make eye contact with a student and act out sprinkling on parmesan and they adjust their playing.

Thanks for reading.


3 thoughts on “Parmesan Playing

  1. This is brilliant!

    I’ll be teaching music in the fall and I’m inspired by your blog. You are so gracious to share your ideas. I appreciate you sharing!!

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