First, although Delta has been behaving pretty well at group lessons - I wouldn't say he was perfect or anything - he was spinning around for a while the last time...
I wasn't thinking about how much strings can hurt fingers that aren't used to it - although I'm as new to the violin as he is, I have played guitar (although I hadn't recently to getting the violin) - and my fingers are just more used to it. But I don't think it is his fingers hurting - he says it is his arm or elbow.... and he resists even hovering the fingers over the strings. Our teacher has asked us to focus more on doing the finger taps this week.
And yes - Delta does have perfectionist tendancies.... the type that causes refusal because of being scared of doing it wrong. It came up last year as being a part of the problem... and I talked with him about it and that seemed to help. I think I had read a couple of books to him as well that were on that kind of theme.... and I think that that is a lot of the problem again. Today in practice we were playing on our Snakes and Ladders board, and he landed on a square requiring fingerings... and was bouncing around not doing it.... and acting scared.... I asked him what he was scared of, and he said he was scared that he would do it wrong. So that reminded me of that tendancy in him. I did get him calmed down, that it is ok to make mistakes because that is how we learn - that we just do our best... So - any hope that this type of perfectionism ever turns into the practice a million times type of perfectionism???? LOL
Echo (just barely 3) has been unofficially doing violin with us since the beginning too - because she insists on a practice after her big brother has one. Naturally I have been going very very very slowly, but she is doing well up to where I have taught her. (I know - I'll probably have a teacher upset with me when she starts officially).
It just seems to me that all the official books paint this lovely little picture of the suzuki program - how practice is fun and not drudgery, and maybe for a lot of kids it is.... but it is frustrating when you are trying so hard to make practice happen and be fun when the child is refusing.... etc. And as much as I try to enjoy the spot where we are, it is hard watching his original classmates all leave him behind and the new beginners catch up. It is hard needing the 500 repetitions, and not the 50 or the 5......
At times, I feel like of the other suzuki parents around in our program, that I have had the hardest time and gotten the least results. I know that it is supposed to be about enjoying the moment, and being gentle and loving - but it gets very frustrating when Delta just refuses to do anything at a lesson, or does a refusal at practice. All the kids in the group he was in last year are a lot further along.... and the beginners that started in September are pretty much where Delta is now. I am so frustrated. Things have actually been improving since about Christmas time - and actually in the group that he is in now, he is mostly behaving better and is playing as well as the couple of kids that are further (except he mostly isn't doing fingers....)
So - just where is he? Delta still isn't playing Twinkles at all with fingers. He is playing the 4 note scale (it is called The Monkey Song here....) - but has been doing that since June. But he fusses and complains anytime he is to use fingers, and sometimes totally refuses. My dh doesn't say anything in front of Delta, but he is getting upset that Delta isn't playing anything yet - doing suzuki is my idea, and is really hard on our budget.