“Don’t hurry, don’t rest.” – S. Sukuki
Try very hard not to argue with your child. Refer to my comments in your notes or on the recording. Consider how important the point of contention is – perhaps a one-word response is enough. You can also seek other parents’ words of advice and experience in the Suzuki Association of the America’s Parents’ Corner.
Remember “We practice to make things easier…” and this refers to everything about the practice session, not just the music. Have one goal for each practice session. Much can be accomplished this way. I can help with this.
Attend group lessons and take notes there too. In groups, the child learns to follow a leader and to listen to others while playing. Chances for sharing solos, playing games and socializing keeps music from being something your child always does alone!
Get involved in studio recitals and activities. These give your child the opportunity to gain confidence in public performance. Most children love to perform if they are well prepared and performance is introduced in a safe manner.
Don’t compare your child’s progress with other children. Focus instead on how much they are learning and growing. Strive to be positive, accepting your child’s rate and style of learning within the framework of doing what I ask. Balance your child’s progress with his/her emotional needs.
6 Things You Can Do to Support Your Child in Violin Lessons:
- Parental Involvement
Just like when a child learns to talk, parents are directly involved in their child’s musical learning. By your attendance and careful note taking at lessons, you are able to be the “home teacher” during the week. Parents work with the teacher to create an enjoyable learning environment.
Children learn words after hearing them spoken hundred of times by others. Listening to music every day is extremely important, particularly listening to the piece in the repertoire that we are currently working on so that your child knows it immediately.
Constant repetition is essential in learning to play an instrument. Children do not learn words nor a piece of music and then discard it. They add it to their vocabulary or repertoire, gradually using it in new and more sophisticated ways. Repetition is crucial for developing mental processes and muscle coordination. This includes all aspects of playing – from proper physical alignment and balance to concentration, technique and finally performance.
As with language, the child’s effort to learn an instrument should be met with sincere praise and encouragement. Each child learns at his/her own rate. We build on small steps. We master each one. This fosters self-confidence, a warm heart, musicianship and beautiful tone.
- Repertoire and Note Reading
Each piece in the repertoire is designed to present a new technical skill to be learned in the context of music rather than solely dry technical exercises. As a child’s “language” on the violin develops and becomes comfortable, I will gradually introduce note reading.
“Inspiration may be a form of super-consciousness, or perhaps of sub-consciousness – I wouldn’t know. But I am sure it is the antithesis of self-consciousness.” – A. Copeland