Regaining confidence

Celia Jones said: Feb 15, 2011
72 posts

So, I posted a while back that my 3 1/2 yo daughter wouldn’t use her left hand fingers, and I wanted to let her carry on working on her bowing and do left hand in her own time. The teacher kept insisting and I kept telling my daughter “in your own time”. She plays the rhythms to the almost all the Book One tunes, with correct bowing where there are double ups and downs, and watching her bow arm to check straightness, movement of elbow, bow hand—my unqualified opinion is she is amazing and has a wonderful tone.

Then a month ago my (totally unmusical) father in law commented scathingly on her playing and somehow it got to me. I got a lot stricter. My daughter got to where she can play a five note scale on each string in all the Twinkle rhythms. And she got most of Twinkle theme, just struggling with the order of the phrases.

But… she gradually got more and more cross and I got more and more stressed and more than once I said a few things I should not have said, to force her to practise. Today she held a showdown: she wanted to watch the Paul Rolland violin videos, I insisted on practise. She point blank refused to do any of her scales and reacted like she is allergic to Twinkle. (We have heard the poor tune at least 5000 times in the last six months.) And she said she doesn’t want to go to her lesson, she doesn’t care a bit about stickers or smarties (never has to be honest.)

I let her have a freestyle practise and she worked on all sorts of interesting stuff—bowing rhythms, harmonics, fire engine sounds with her fingers. My plan now is to revert to that—instead of insisting on practise, just let her watch as much Mr Rolland video as she wants (or as little) and let her play whatever, just advising on technique.

Has anyone else been through the same sort of thing? Any tips? Have I wrecked violin for her or if I back off will she come back to it?

Celia Jones said: Mar 10, 2011
72 posts

Who am I kidding? We totally changed practise. The teacher wrote out a practise plan instead of me, we dress up and all the soft toys come out to cheer her on. We’ve completed 9 focussed practises and guess what? Today DD worked on the first line of Lightly Row AND then played all the way through all the Twinkles, fingers down. Imperfect sure but the look of joy and pride on her face was wonderful, and in her voice as she said “I can play ALL the variations!”

All part of the helter skelter.

Irene said: Mar 10, 2011
Irene Yeong160 posts


that’s very encouraging when she can play all the variations and found the satisfaction and joy in being able to do that..
thanks for sharing, i look forward to the day when my daughter can play all the variations.. :)

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