One of the 2 girls i teach has a huge passion for violin, she really loves it and proudly tells me how she practises twice a day (shes just turned 8 and pre-grade 1). She has stickers on her violin from her peri teacher one of which has just fallen off which im very pleased about because she doesn't use her ears when she plays at all, if a notes wrong she doesnt correct it unless im telling her to concentrate on doing it, and even then it's 'ooh yes my finger isnt on the yellow sticker is it!'
But i had a surprise last week - she forgot her music so i decided to do some 'ear training' games, just a bit of fun.... We did things like her playing a scale at the same time as me and listening to make sure her notes matched my notes exactly which she did with no problem adjusting her fingers so she was in unison with me. Then i got her to close her eyes and i would play open strings and she had to play the open string i was playing without looking, then i introduced 3 fingers on all 4 strings and played notes at random and she could easily find the note i was playing and adjust it exactly in tune with mine (she had her eyes closed).
Is this an unusually good ear for someone who's just started work on grade 1? I'm sure the other girl i teach wouldnt have been able to do that, but having no prior experience of teaching violin im not sure if girl A is above average, or perhaps girl B who couldn't do those things is below average...!
(Now the issue of getting her to use this good ear she has when she's playing music... )