About the Suzuki Method
The Suzuki method is much more than teaching children to play instruments. Its purpose is to develop the whole child, to help unfold the natural potential to learn, and to help each child become a productive and well-balanced person. Suzuki teachers aspire to help every child find the joy that comes through making music.
The "Mother Tongue" Method
Children can learn to play the violin as early as age 3 using the Suzuki Method of music instruction, sometimes also call the "Mother Tongue" method.
The Suzuki Method was developed by Dr. Shinichi Suzuki in Japan shortly after World War II. He marveled that children all over the world learn to speak their complex native languages easily at an early age. Could they learn music at an early age as well? The answer is “YES”! With the Suzuki Method, your pre-school child can learn a musical instrument in a way that is similar to how they learn to speak their native language.
Listening—Babies listen to the spoken word long before they actually speak. The more they are around language, the more fluent they become. The same is true with music. If your child listens to recordings of the music he or she will learn to play, learning becomes easier and more fun.
Imitating—Babies repeat words and phrases they have heard and eventually speak in full sentences. With the Suzuki Method, children learn to play songs they have been listening to. Then the child constantly repeats what has been learned. (Young children don't stop saying words once they have mastered them. They build on the old words.)
Reading—As children grow, they learn the alphabet, how to read, and how to write. We don't expect that they will start reading at the same time they are first learning to speak. Suzuki students similarly learn about musical notation, theory, and note reading as they age.
Suzuki Triangle—Child, Parent, Teacher
The Suzuki Method requires that the child, parent, and teacher work closely together—the Suzuki triangle. Each child attends private and group lessons with a parent. As a Suzuki parent, you play an essential role in your child's Suzuki music education. You attend lessons and are the child's teacher at home for daily practice. Your role is larger than in traditional music lessons. You are a partner with the teacher to develop your child's musical ability.
You learn the fundamentals of playing the instrument so that you can guide your child in practice at home.
You listen to the Suzuki recordings frequently with your child.
You make practicing a part of daily life.
You expose your child to music.
You offer sincere praise.