My son has now had his trumpet for three months. For the month of August, we have been meeting weekly with a junior high band director, which my son is loving. We have been working with him on reading music, but so far that is not clicking. I am not pushing him, just working with him when I have a teachable moment. His teacher is also working on note reading, technique and assorted other beginner theory.
Lately I am wondering what the line is between allowing him to play by ear vs. learning to read music? He seems to have a natural ability to play what he hears. For instance today, we were showing my parents the video of Geoffrey Gallente and Chris Botti play America the Beautiful. The next thing I knew my son had his trumpet out and had played half of the song, stopping only when he got to notes that he had not yet learned.
He has an airplane game on their iPod that includes the anthem from Top Gun. On Friday, though he had not heard the song in at least a week, he figured out how to play the beginning of it on the trumpet.
Here is a little video:
[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-0FqugBIYYk]YouTube - top gun anthem[/ame]
And just to prove we are doing our best to not turn him into the next prodigy, if he wants to play the trumpet, while holding it upside down, why not??
[ame=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7PG3HC8LUvI]YouTube - silly trumpet[/ame]