This month's article talks about attitude.  One of the things that I pointed out is that if a student starts a practice session with a good attitude he is far more likely to make satisfactory progress during the rehearsal than if he starts in a negative frame of mind.

If you are a parent or teacher who is with the student during or immediately after the lesson it is very important to reinforce the positive steps that were taken in the lesson.  And I gave you a list of 38 ways to make send a positive message yesterday if things have gone well.  Today let's talk about how to handle it if the lesson or practice did not go quite as well well as you, the teacher, or (most importantly) the student had hoped. 

Always say something positive about the practice.  I understand that you may have to stretch a little bit to do that, but try to compliment something.  "Your posture is great," will work well with younger students.  With more advanced students you will need to appeal to some other aspect that is a strength.  It can be as simple as the bow grip or the position of the left hand.
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Violin Tip of the Day - February 18
* Violin Tips for Practice and Rehearsals.

* Violin Technique and Exercises.

* How to Care for Your Violin.

* Inspiration and Motivation for Violinists, Fiddlers, or
   Anyone Interested in Stringed Instruments.
Violin Tip of the Day -- Violin Student Central -- February 1
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Today's Tip in a Nutshell:
     Say something positive, even when it's hard.
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Second, approach the problem from a positive perspective, while acknowledging the difficulty the student is facing.  "That piece is really coming along, but that part can be really hard, can't it"  I think that as we continue to practice that, you'll find that we'll get the best results if . . .    This week let's try to (insert a positive suggestion) and see how that works for you . . ." A key for parents here (especially if the parent is not a violinist) is to use this statement to echo something the teacher has said during the lesson.

Keep it individualized.  Keep it positive.  Keep it light. And always remember that disappointment shows in your face, students can read it in your eyes.  If YOU focus on the positive, your eyes will convey the positive message you want to send -- there won't be any disappointment there!