Olivia: (sings two notes) "Oh, but wait Mommy.... (whispers) I want to do the 'sel'..."
Me: "What's a 'sel'?"
Olivia: "You know..." (sings a scale)
Me: "Oh, a SCALE. Really, you want to do a scale? OK, I can teach you a scale."
Olivia: "Actually, I can do it all by myself! I figured it out, all by myself!"
(plays an A major scale, with a little help)
Me: "Where did you learn to do that?!?"
Olivia: "Your students!"
She hears my students play scales every day in their lessons, so she hears scales all day every day. It's actually not surprising that she figured it out, but I was floored. I know she won't be this excited about scales forever, but right now I'm pretty thrilled.
After the scale incident, she took her violin to preschool and played a pretty mean Song of the Wind, complete with hopping fingers, swinging elbows and bow circles.
Suffice it to say, we're in a high period of violin at the moment. I share this (ok, primarily to brag as a mommy...) mainly to illustrate a couple of points:
1. This sounds pretty idealistic, but if you all remember in your parent ed sessions, I told you that you would have high points and low points. This is one of the high points I was talking about. Trust me, we had plenty of low points. There were many practice sessions where we just played her favorite song once through because I knew she would love it, or we had a concert for Winnie the Pooh and declared it our practice for the day (just last week, actually) or I had to tell her we couldn't practice right now because I don't practice with grouchy people (by the way, a good tactic to get a kid who really doesn't want to practice to suddenly change their tune. Tell them they can't do it and immediately they want to! But the rule stands. I always wait until she's genuinely cheerful before trying again.) There are hills and valleys, and if you just keep in mind how amazing the hills can be, the valleys are easier to get through.
2. It took us a year and a half to get to this point. And I would consider that pretty fast for a kid who started at 2 and a half. It really takes a long time and a lot of patience.
3. We practice every day. I'm not sure how many days we've missed in the year and a half we've been doing this, but it might be less than 5. Certainly less than 10. Some days it's a super short or super easy practice, but we do it every day. Not all of them are ground-breaking, but the routine is there.
Violin is really fun for us right now. I guess another reason I'm sharing this is so I have a written record of this awesome day when we're slogging through Etude. I just have to keep at it until we get to the next awesome day.