Sofia walked into her lesson yesterday and told her teacher, “I think I’m quitting violin,” with what I imagine was the same teenager-y slump of her shoulders and monotone voice with which she told me about it.
I’m trying to learn the boundaries between funny versus shaming kid stories, since this digital trail of mine may someday be theirs to discover — but today’s lesson in manners and gratitude is being shared with Sofia’s permission, so here goes:
Over break, we talked about whether or not she would quit violin lessons mid-year. She’s at 2.5 years of lessons under the same instructor; we are lucky to have an incredible Suzuki program within LCS with two classes per week during resource hours, and only the cost of the instrument rental.
But Sofia has not committed to practicing regularly, doesn’t particularly enjoy the instrument, doesn’t love being on stage, and while she’s competent in the songs she’s learned, it’s just not clicking as her thing.
Our rule has been two years of any particular endeavor; year one will always be awkward and halting and perhaps not even enjoyable. Year two is when perhaps a little bit of competence begins, the repetition having built some degree of fluency with rules and notes, muscle memory sets in, and enjoyment of the sport or instrument can begin. After all, who enjoys something they’re mostly confused over?
(This is entirely my own theory, maybe one year is sufficient, maybe three is ideal?!?)
So: when I found out just now that Sofia walked into her lesson yesterday and told her teacher, “I think I’m quitting violin,” with what I imagine was the same teenager-y slump and mono with which she told me about it; her teacher said ok and sent her back to class.