In general, I really enjoy seeing other teachers' students perform. I see areas where I can improve my own teaching and also areas in my own teaching that I am proud of. It is difficult, however, not to come with a critical spirit and judge every other student that is not mine much too harshly. I really believe that student recitals should be an environment and support, and this should come from the teachers first. I would hate to have my own students learning from me to listen to a colleague and, putting their nose in the air, publicly criticize their performance. I would want them to think about what was good about the performance and wisely and quietly learn what not to do the next time they perform. I also believe that being intensely critical of others leads to huge insecurities about oneself. If you find something wrong with everything, how can you live up to your own standard? Besides, at the end of the day, they are kids! Why intentionally fill a child's life with negativity?
I have noticed, however, that this is not the attitude of some teachers. While sitting through an elementary recital, one teacher audibly whispered criticisms to the person next to her. "The rhythm was completely wrong!" "Not good". Also, there was eyebrow raising and head shaking. I really couldn't believe it. Why do this? I had plenty of my own opinions but thought it best to keep them to myself. Really, to me, being kind and supportive is just good manners.