The most challenging thing for Carter is anything involving fine motor skills. As he says, “I just can’t make my fingers do what I want sometimes.”
Needless to say, piano is not something that comes easily, he has to work at it. We have had many tears and moments of defeat in the past 9 months.
Carter is also a very determined child when he wants something. He found out that a few kids were playing songs for the Veteran’s Day Assembly and he (on Monday night) decided he wanted to play the Star Spangled Banner (that Thursday). His teacher found him a simplified version and he set to work. I didn’t think it was possible so I encouraged him to practice but told him that if he didn’t get it in time, he could always do it at the talent show. He practiced more in those few days than he ever has, but he still struggled with the timing and a few notes. He confidently brought his music to school and played it for the music teacher Mrs. Nelson and bless her heart, she allowed him to play it as prelude while people gathered for the assembly. It was not perfect but it was such a huge moment for him!
Since then, his teacher and I have seen a different kid at the keys. He still gets frustrated now and then and still thinks he should be able to play a piece the first time he tries it, but I see him enjoying it more and sharing it with family members and friends when he can. Brenda had her 5 students to her house for a Christmas recital and she had Carter open the night with the Star Spangled Banner. He later played 3 more songs: Up on a Housetop, Jingle Bells, and The First Noel. His grandparents and a couple of aunts, uncles, and cousins came to support him. He was very proud of himself and grateful that he had an audience of family who loves him!