“Music exists for the purpose of growing an admirable heart.” My goal as a Suzuki violin teacher is to train and develop each of my student into admirable people with the ability to do great things, through a proficiency in the violin as an instrument, and a love and ease in music and the classical-artistic world.
“Every child can,” was a motto of Dr Shinichi Suzuki, a German-trained Japanese violinist who developed the Talent Education method of music teaching just after World War II.
Suzuki based his approach on the belief that “Musical ability is not an inborn talent but an ability which can be developed. Any child who is properly trained can develop musical ability, just as all children develop the ability to speak their mother tongue. The potential of every child is unlimited.”
As babies, children are constantly listening to their mother tongue, and therefor most children pick up the language quite readily and with gusto. Then, as they learn to read, their parent sits beside them, encouraging them to pronounce and practice correctly the new sounds and put them into sentences.
Following this thinking, the Suzuki method has been build on the understanding and evidence that repetition builds strong skills when coupled with a strong motive. The parent attends weekly lessons and group classes, and is the “home-teacher”. The repertoire CD that is included in the method is meant to be listened to daily as listening regularly fosters ease and ability as each song is begun. It has been heard over and over again, just like a baby hearing their parent speak day after day. As the child listens to the CD daily, they also hear more advanced pieces, and strive to play them. Younger siblings are also at an advantage, because though they are not taking lessons, they are unconsciously absorbing the music and it’s tonality.
The Suzuki triangle is an integral part of the method. It fully encompasses and creates equal all three groups.
The Suzuki Method also puts a strong emphasis on learning musical tone and pitch by ear much in the same way that a child would learn to speak. Through listening immersion and plenty of repetition, a child’s natural musical sensibilities emerge before they learn to read written music.
Suzuki lessons are structured with the intention that each child receives individual attention, both in the group classes as well as the private lessons. In this atmosphere, each child grows in a family atmosphere, as it has been described by former Suzuki students.
Here are some links for further Suzuki method reading: