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Suzuki Music Program

Do You Want To Be a Suzuki Parent?

Suzuki lessons can improve your child's ability to learn in all subject areas. Recent research has shown that early instrumental music study is one of the most effective ways to enhance brain development in children. With the intensified interest in young children, and how they learn and grow — it is natural that the ideas of Shinichi Suzuki often come to the attention of concerned parents. This information is designed to help you, as parents, decide if you are interested in embarking on a musical and educational venture with your children.

First of all, we are making the assumption that you want to spend time with your child, so that both of you can enjoy and understand your relationship better, through music. Your interest goes beyond merely "exposing the child to music lessons." It explores the areas of mutual learning, home practice, attending lessons and class practice, as well as enthusiastic, continuing support for the process of learning to play the instrument.

The Suzuki approach relies strongly on the cooperative relationship of the teacher, parent, and student, in a pleasant, yet disciplined enterprise. It is not merely a music method, although it does require careful, patient, persistent, study and practice on an instrument. Rather, it is a combination of philosophy, a technique, and a program of education. The parent’s role involves the following:

  • Learning the fundamentals of playing the instrument, and how to take care of it.
  • Doing preparatory “homework” – reading (see list below), discussing with other parents, and visiting classes.
  • Attending each lesson with the student, taking notes, and practicing with the student at home.
  • Playing the cassette tape or CD at home on a regular basis.
  • Helping to create not only a musical environment for the child, but also a total environment of affection, support, encouragement, and understanding.

The parent need not be a trained musician in order to be a good “home teacher.” With the teacher’s guidance, the parent can help with bowing, fingering, posture, stance, and later on, with note reading.

Finally, the most important single point for the parent, we believe, is the willingness to devote regular time to the project, and to work closely with the teacher (and with other parents) in building a fine relationship for the sake of the children’s growth and development.

Recommended Reading:

  • Nurtured by Love (N.Y. Exposition Press), by Shinichi Suzuki
  • Ability Development from Age Zero (Senzay Publication), by Shinichi Suzuki