The private lesson is the heart of Suzuki instruction-the place where basic skills are taught and the parent-teacher-child learning team is developed. The length of your child’s lesson (30, 45 or 60 min) depends on her/his level and ability. The amount of instruction a student receives is tailored to each child’s rate of growth in the manner of the Suzuki philosophy. The parent observes the individual or group lesson, take notes, and support his/child at home as the “home teacher” by supporting the development of great habits of regular practice, daily listening, and positive encouragement through words and actions. Observations of other student’s lessons and “crossover” lessons are also encouraged to develop a better sense of the material and stronger studio community.
Group instruction is an integral part of the Suzuki experience. Consistent and varied repetition, by reviewing known pieces through games and developmentally appropriate activities reinforce skills and technique learned in the individual lesson. Group classes provide a fun and social atmosphere for musical peers, providing that extra motivation each student needs. Even activities that appear to be “games” hold an important instructional purpose. Technical, ensemble and listening skills are developed in a group environment and new pieces are introduced modeled by more advanced players. Approximately once a semester, one group class is replaced by an informal community performance opportunity.
Studio solo recitals provide an opportunity for all of the students to play a solo piece and for each child to be acknowledged for her or his musical achievements. These gatherings provide inspiration for younger players, leadership for older students, and a social environment in celebration of every student’s musical growth.
Throughout the year, students have the opportunity to participate in special events that serve to broaden and enrich their musical training and connect Suzuki families with the community and throughout the area. These include public performance opportunities, one day workshops with visiting guest clinicians, week-long Summer Camp, master classes, themed concerts and events such as Pick a Friend, and Holiday caroling party.