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DD doesn't want to do violin practice

(50 Posts)
PotteryLottery Thu 04-Jun-15 21:48:58

So there is no point in continuing lessons, right?

She's Y1 and should do 20 mins a day, but doesn't want to do anything even if I get everything ready for her.

Pikkewyn Thu 04-Jun-15 21:52:02

I have a 6yo DD who plays violin too, if we are lucky she practices 10 minutes 3 x a week. Some weeks not at all. She is progressing well, can read music, plays a number of simple pieces. I am at the 'she is 6' stage of violin lessons. IF she continues to play and heads for grade 1 I'll push the practise more but for now she need to love her instrument and enjoy playing.

morethanpotatoprints Thu 04-Jun-15 21:52:53

You can't force them, but maybe have a chat with her about it.
Was it her decision to begin in the first place.
it can test commitment when they are young, the weathers nice outside or they are tired from school, or even teacher moving too quickly and/ or its a bit hard.
Is she good and does she usually enjoy it, I mean is this just recently.
Oh and y1 in incredibly young. My dd started at this age but was motivated too bloody much grin
She may just need to go at a slower pace and maybe have more fun with it.

Feminstsahm Thu 04-Jun-15 21:57:07

I literally never practiced before grade 5,and then I joined bands rather than practicing for lessons. Got to grades 7,and 8 on trombone and saxophone. If she enjoys it carryon the lessons if she hates it stop. I stared on trumpet which I hated but of course id learn lots that made other instruments easier.

Feminstsahm Thu 04-Jun-15 21:58:52

Sorry just noticed her age if it amyters I started trombone and saxophone at 13,and 15, and stopped at 17.

ragged Thu 04-Jun-15 22:00:59

If I had done that, DD would have stopped in yr1.
I let DD do violin 'for fun' from yr1-3 (never practiced). She made minimal progress all that time but insisted she loved doing it.
After that she had to earn back pocket money by practising.
She is now yr8 & working on Grade 5 material, plus helping the yr11s with their BTEC in music.
Not sure what the solution is for others, but seems to have worked out for us.

PotteryLottery Thu 04-Jun-15 22:02:43

It was her decision to start lessons, no pressure from me, I don't play.

Won't the teacher get frustrated with lack of practice, am sure he will be able to tell?

airedailleurs Thu 04-Jun-15 22:08:23

20 mins every day sounds excessive OP, I would compromise and settle for 10 mins 3 - 4 times a week. If a little more persuasion is needed, give her pocket money for practising, say 50p a time?

DayLillie Thu 04-Jun-15 22:11:22

Try making it part of the daily routine, eg after tea. It is only when they get further on that they can get motivated to practice themselves.

PotteryLottery Thu 04-Jun-15 22:11:47

Also, she is being taught several pieces of music before excelling on any one. Is that approach usual?

Feminstsahm Thu 04-Jun-15 22:17:53

My teachers never noticed at the early levels and she's still a baby really let her just enjoy it and do it as much as she wants to. Maybe tv theme tunes or pop songs would be fun for practice even if you have to look over her shoulder to know what she is playing smile

lucyjordon Thu 04-Jun-15 22:18:03

I played instruments when you get, I don't think I started anything properly until junior school though - yr 3 or 4 niw? I think 20 mins z day is a huge amount fir a year 1. Really, it will just turn her off it. It should be a pleasure

morethanpotatoprints Thu 04-Jun-15 22:20:10

If she is learning 3 pieces at once her teacher may be getting her used to practicing 3 for exams or so she doesn't get bored playing the same piece.
My dd used to challenge herself with youtube recordings and give herself an amount of time to be able to play them, like a little game.
You can find most pieces you want as parents are forever uploading their dc playing their latest piece.

Personally, I don't agree with bribery or encouraging the same time every day, but you have to do what works for you and your child.
It's great the range of suggestions people are giving.

Moonatic Thu 04-Jun-15 22:21:46

I think it is normal for most children not to want to practice. Doesn't automatically mean that they should give up, at least not to my way of thinking. The less your dd practices, the slower the progress and so, ultimately, the less enjoyable the whole learning process is.

At age 7, and pre grade 1 she probably doesn't need to practice for 20 minutes every day. My dd made good progress doing 3 x 20 mins per week, but arguably 10 minutes every day would be even better.

Worriedandlost Thu 04-Jun-15 22:23:21

How long did she have lessons? When dd started violin lessons it became a battle after couple of months. And the more she resisted the less I insisted and the worse it was getting. After about 9 month we both had some break through - I finally started to insist on practicing and she immediately started to make progress and enjoy her lessons. It was hard for her to play in a first place therefore she did not want to play/practice, but not practicing did not make it any easier, so it was a viscous circle.

fourchetteoff Thu 04-Jun-15 22:25:18

Does she honestly enjoy it?
If so, perhaps cutting down the amount of time would help.

If she is only doing it because it's expected, then I wouldn't' bother anymore. It's a waste of everyone's time. I allowed my DD to drop violin after 6 months and guitar after 8 months when I realised she hadn't once picked up either instrument ever on her own accord. As someone who played an instrument to a high level I used to be sometimes a bit slack with practice, but I would happily muck around for ages at other times. Does she ever pick it up by herself without you telling her to?

Worriedandlost Thu 04-Jun-15 22:26:27

I think different teachers have different approaches, this method- learning several pieces of music before excelling on any one is working the best for my dd, so yeas, it is a valid thing to do. One of the teachers she had liked to polish everything to perfection and it was soooo boring.

BelindaBagwash Thu 04-Jun-15 22:28:27

How old is Y1?

I started violin at 7 because my dad wanted me to. I hated it and wasn't very good. I wasn't motivated as it wasn't my choice.

I gave it up and started cello at 10 and made very rapid progress.

I think it may work better if a child really wants to do it. In my area, children don't start learning an instrument until they are at least 8 (strings) or even 10 for brass and woodwind.

HumphreyCobbler Thu 04-Jun-15 22:28:57

I would make practice shorter and less often. But if no practice happens I would give up for now and start again later. I think music teachers must get fed up with going over the same thing over and over again and it costs money!

Until they are a bit older they may find it really difficult to practice properly without adult help. Not all practice is valuable anyway.

morethanpotatoprints Thu 04-Jun-15 22:30:12

I hate violins I really do. I used to love them but not anymore.
They are a hard instrument to play as well compared to lots of others a young child could play. It seems to take a long time before they can enjoy it in ensembles as well and because of this they need to have a certain amount of motivation to pick the thing up.

I read an interesting thread on the ABRSM forum, many years ago now.
It was parents with the same problem as you really.
The general consensus seemed to be that until senior school most children will need some cajoling, encouragement and support to enable them to practice successfully.
They have to learn how to practice and this takes time.

PotteryLottery Thu 04-Jun-15 22:36:03

She really enjoys the lessons, which she started in October, and says she wants to continue lessons but not practice at home! But I imagine progress will be very slow that way.

Y1 is age 6. She hasn't recently picked it up of her own accord...

fourchetteoff Thu 04-Jun-15 22:39:09

Hiya,
My DD was the same with guitar. She loved the lessons, hated practicing.

I talked about it with the teacher after 3 months and we decided she didn't have to practice for the time being, as long as she was enjoying the lessons.

The problem was, after a while it was frustrating to see the guitar in it's case all week, and how little progress she was making by only playing 30mins a week. The teacher and I hoped she'd eventually pick it up of her own accord as she was so keen, but after 9 months I just thought it was all a waste of money and the teachers time.

Personally, I would abandon ship at the end of the year and perhaps try another instrument next year.

Pikkewyn Thu 04-Jun-15 22:43:18

Progress may be very slow in your mind but she may be finding it just right. I am obviously the opposite end of the scale to you in that I need her to love her instrument and play voluntarily. If he teacher comments that she isn't playing well or is having trouble with something then I let DD know that she needs to practice and if she doesn't she will not get any better. I remind her on a daily basis and we have a table stand for her violin so it is always on display and not hidden in a case. Today she picked it up on her way in and headed to her bedroom where she played for 45 minutes working on lengthening her bow stroke and randomly making up tunes. She hadn't been near it apart from her lesson in the last week.

Worriedandlost Fri 05-Jun-15 00:08:44

PotteryLottery did you speak to the teacher? As suggested above, she may have good enough progress and if her teacher is happy with it then may be you can let your dd get away with practicing for sometime?

If she started in October it is still an early stage and is quite difficult....
(I started to reconsider to send my ds for violin lessons before 6yo... smile)

ragged Fri 05-Jun-15 06:42:41

At that age we were told 10 minutes/day 4-5 days/week was adequate.
There used to be a poster called Beetroot who also paid her kids to practice with no regrets.

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