We hadn’t done violin for a week or more …..
And the first practice back was horrible.
I also did not have a proper practice plan laid out for William.
And it was really the practice from hell.
What made it hell:
1) No predicable practice plan so William could see what he had to do and tick off his progress
2) We had just done four piano practice sessions, it was Saturday night, I was tired and knew I had to bite the bullet of violin practice or we would never do it again ever (probably) and I knew I had to do viola afterwards.
3) William was tired.
4) William hid from me when I said it was violin practice time
5) I had to threaten him to get him to come to me
6) I had to threaten him to get him to stand up properly and do what I say
7) He wouldn’t choose from a range of options I gave him for which line of rhythm practice we were doing (he could do 1 to 5, he choose 6 as an example) just to be difficult
8) When he made a mistake, he threw himself on the ground crying and I had to threaten him again to get him to stand up and do it again
9) He was grumpy the entire session
10) I was kicking myself the whole practice that I had let it come to this
11) He deliberately held the bow incorrectly and I had to manually manipulate his fingers
What went well
1) I quickly concocted a practice plan in my head and told William what we would be doing and I kept it short (15 minutes)– rhythm, pizzicato on each finger, bow hold
2) We started with clapping & counting from his rhythm book and it was 4:4 time and we had to march – he got this more easily than I expected
3) I managed to end the practice on a success note – good bow hold exercises
4) He did very well at pizzicato and getting all fingers in the right position
5) His bow hold is pretty good most of the time
6) We did it – tomorrow will be easier.
So yeah not all sunshine and roses is it?
But if I followed my own advice (practice every day even to just touch the instrument and always have a predictable practice plan to set expectations) I would not have had a practice session like this!