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The Suzuki Philosophy
Dr. Suzuki, a violinist and teacher in Japan, marveled that all children learn to speak their native language (a complex and sophisticated skill even for adults) and began to apply the basic principles of language acquisition to the learning of music and called it his mother-tongue approach. He felt that the concept of inborn talent was artificial and limiting. He believed that given the right set of circumstances, all children could learn to play music and learn to play well. One of those circumstances is starting early, thus Suzuki students often begin taking lessons at 3 or 4 years of age.
The most common misconception of Suzuki study is that children do not learn to read music. This is completely false. Music reading is delayed while specifics of good tone and making beautiful music are emphasized. Then music reading is introduced at a natural time and comes easily for the student.
Two core principles of Suzuki study are the Suzuki Triangle; teacher/parent/child, and learning structured around the weekly individual lesson supported by regular group lessons. In the weekly lesson the parent plays an active role attending the lesson and taking careful notes to instruct the student's practice during the week. Often the parent will take the first few lessons and learn enough about playing the instrument not only to help the student's learning, but also to create a co-op learning experience with their child. This intimate relationship with your child's learning process carries over into all areas of your child's learning and development. At our Suzuki Academy the group lesson is scheduled about every two weeks and is an important element to students' progress generating motivation to practice, providing a forum for parents to share ideas, and is a fun and positive performance experience for everyone.
Students develop musical skills as they advance through the carefully laid out Suzuki repertoire for that instrument. Early pieces are learned by ear and played together in group classes and recitals. Suzuki students regularly join junior orchestras or ensemble groups as they mature musically and many progress to become excellent players in symphony orchestras.
Suzuki Instruction Information
All Music Center Suzuki Faculty are certified by the Suzuki Association of the Americas and have received training to teach in the method. If you are not familiar with the Suzuki method of music study and would like more information about it, visit the Suzuki Association of the Americas (SAA) website and the Suzuki Association of Washington State (SAWS) website. All our Suzuki faculty are active members of SAA and Music Center is proud to be an organizational member.