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Suzuki Violin Program

Teacher: Andrew Snow

The essence of the Suzuki Philosophy is that all children are born with profound potential ability, and that by nurturing that ability in the correct environment we will produce people with not only great spirits but a deep love and appreciation of music.

Students are taught in small steps in a logical and carefully thought-out way. This sequence builds slowly, ensuring each step is mastered before completion.

Equally as important is consistent weekly listening to the Suzuki CD repertoire, giving each student a reminder and understanding of their ultimate playing goal. Listening is an essential and a fundamental part of the Suzuki Method. As soon as your child’s violin arrives, they should begin listening to the Twinkle variations and theme on their CD. Make this, along with daily practice, part of the violin routine.

As the students progress with their studies and become more advanced, they should begin practicing independently, eventually attending lessons without the parent, performing in a weekly Masterclass and chamber ensemble, and learning to read music notation.

With this formula, Japanese violinist and teacher Dr. Shinichi Suzuki proved that children, not just in Japan, but all over the world, would delight in their weekly violin studies, and become greater human beings.

At WHMS, there are two different paths that a young student can take.

Magic Violin Track

Beginning Magic Violin

First Semester (September – December)

  • This course covers basic violin positioning, introduction to parts and language of violin and exposure to beginning Twinkle themes
  • This choice is slower and spread out in two sections throughout the year
  • For parents of younger children who are looking for a “test drive”
  • Only meets once a week, during school time, for 30 minutes in a group setting
  • Requires no rental violin, only purchase of a Cherub box violin and bow ($10 ) from Sharmusic.com
  • Group class with maximum of six students
  • Will perform in the WHMS Winter Concert
  • The cost is $110. 

Pizzicato – Advanced Magic Violin

Second Semester (January – June)

  • Requires purchase of package rental violin and music book from Sharmusic.com
  • Group class with a maximum of six students
  • Will perform in WHMS Spring Concert
  • This course covers advanced violin positioning with a real violin, care for the instrument and further ear training in preparation for transition for Suzuki violin track.
  • The cost is $190
    Registration Form for 2017-2018


Suzuki Violin Track

          • This choice is a more demanding, Suzuki-based approach that does not have an ending point
          • For students and parents of whom are serious and very eager about starting their violin studies
          • Requires commitment from both parents and students for greatest success
          • Best age to start this track is five years old, but ultimately depends on the child
          • There are 33 scheduled lessons throughout the school year.
          • Primary students attend 30 minute private lessons. LE, UE and MS students may choose between 30, 45, and 60 minute private lessons, dependent on level.
          • Private lessons are once a week, and run for 30, 45, or 60 minutes. The 45 and 60 minute private lessons are recommended for students studying Book Three and above.
          • If your child is in the Primary, they will take their lesson during school hours (from 9 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.)
          • If your child is in the Lower Elementary, Upper Elementary or Middle School, they will take their lessons outside of school hours (from 8 – 9 a.m. or 2:30 – 4:30 p.m.), or during their lunch and/or recess time. There will be no charge for morning/after care before their lesson.
          • Registration Form for 2017-2018 

Attendance Policy

Attendance will be taken at every lesson by the instructor, and in the student’s notebook. There are NO make-ups for missed lessons due to personal vacations, snow days or delays, or no-shows.

A swap sheet will be provided to all students and parents for advanced notice absences (class testing, WHMS field trip, WHMS assembly, WHMS rehearsal or concert, and Shakespeare rehearsal or production, student illness, special school lunches, etc.). Please contact another parent to swap lessons when there is a conflict in order to not lose a lesson.

Practicing

A child in the Suzuki Program should be practicing at minimum of ten minutes a day. If this practice is programmed into a child’s routine, it becomes more of a daily enjoyment rather then an unexpected chore that would distract from another activity. There should never be any surprises during your child’s practicing. Rather, just a simple review of the new and supplementary material taught at the latest lessons. These new pieces and exercises are written in the student’s notebook so there is no question what material should be practiced.

Questions and Answers:

Q: Can my child begin violin in the second semester if they have not taken Magic Violin in the first semester?
A. Violin is a year-long commitment. While some exceptions can be made, it is highly recommended that your child start in either the Magic Violin program or Suzuki violin in September and continue through the spring.

Q: Can my child take regular Suzuki violin lessons if they have not taken Magic Violin?
A. The program that a child is placed into is determined by their age, and/or previous experience. Generally, Primary-aged children will automatically be placed into Magic Violin for a year, and Lower Elementary, Upper Elementary and Middle School students are placed into Suzuki violin.

Q: My child has soccer in the fall on Thursdays. When are lessons offered?
A. Setting up the schedule for every child in September to meet everyone’s needs is a complicated process. Once lesson times are set, they are very difficult to change. Please check all special and extracurricular schedules in the beginning of the year to avoid such conflicts.

Q: I have heard that Suzuki students learn music by ear. Will my child ever learn to read music?
A. Yes, your student will learn to read music. In the Suzuki method, learning to read music is delayed in order to develop the child’s ear for listening to music. Generally learning to read music will begin at the end of book one leading to book two.

Q: What if we decide that violin is not working for our child. Can we quit mid-year?
A. We hope that each family will commit to the year-long program; however, if you decide that violin is not for your child, you may opt out at the end of the semester (around mid- January).

Dr. Maria Montessori

Dr. Maria Montessori…devoted her life to the education and understanding of children. She believed the purpose of education was to assist the process of life.

Faculty & Staff

Our children are guided by specially certified teachers who use the well-defined integrated Montessori curriculum and beautifully crafted interactive materials to foster individual and cooperative skills.

Parent Perspectives