Violins different sizes.jpg

Practice Ideas for Suzuki Students

Violins different sizes.jpg

It is a assortment of apply concepts for Suzuki instrumental college students.

Good and common apply is essential within the Suzuki technique, and the extra pleasing the apply is, the extra environment friendly it’s and the extra it helps the coed to thrive and to progress in his research. Everywhere in the world, Suzuki households have been inventing their very own personal methods and methods to apply and to maintain the every day apply routine fascinating. This particular person expertise and these personal collections of practising concepts could be an incredible useful resource – if they might be shared with the entire Suzuki group.

This Wikibook is a primary step to entry this data and to make it out there for everyone. Each Suzuki pupil, Suzuki guardian or Suzuki trainer who has apply thought to share is invited to take action. Simply click on “edit this web page” (on prime of this web page) and begin contributing your concepts. In case you need assistance or have feedback, depart a observe on the dialogue web page.

To be taught extra concerning the Suzuki technique, see the Wikipedia article.

Basic apply concepts[edit]

Hold the instrument on a violin stand[edit]

Among the finest investments that you are able to do is to buy an adjustable violin stand. Ingles is great high quality, however some other model will in all probability do as properly. A violin stand is not more than 20 to 30 US {dollars}, it grows with the scale of your kid’s instrument and it holds each the instrument (with the shoulder relaxation hooked up) and the bow.

The benefit of maintaining the instrument on a stand as an alternative of within the case is that it significantly lowers the edge of grabbing and enjoying it. Opening the violin case, taking the instrument out and attaching the shoulder relaxation is not one thing your youngster would do throughout a industrial break on tv, however precisely this state of affairs comes inside attain if the instrument is being saved on a stand within the household room.

Make your youngster a Pop star[edit]

Each youngster needs to change into well-known. Make a youtube video or CD along with her finest violin items. She can provide these CDs away to her pals, they usually additionally make good Christmas presents for your loved ones. This exercise not solely consists of dressing up and posing for images, but in addition designing a CD cowl, selecting the best items, and thoroughly brushing these items up earlier than you lastly report them.

Take the index card apply to the following stage[edit]

We live within the 21st Century. Kids love the pc. Give the boring previous index playing cards an improve and immediate your youngster’s apply not with handwritten notes however with a PowerPoint presentation. Some children may even wish to create their very own PowerPoint apply file. (Be sure they embody all of the workouts they’re alleged to do.)

This exercise is perhaps a bit time-consuming, however for kids with a technical thoughts it’s irresistible.

They’ll even embody sound information, footage or small movies. (Grasp that chance and have them showcase their finest violin enjoying, bow maintain and many others. for the digicam or for the sound recorder.)

Have a Stuffie Live performance[edit]

Particularly good for youthful college students. Announce to the family that you’re having a Live performance. Name out “Come to the live performance!” and have your youngster gather all of the dolls and stuffed animals to be the viewers. (After all, different members of the family can come too.) Have a “program” made up with the songs that your youngster (and also you) will play – even when there are some repeats. That is naturally the objects you need your youngster to apply, plus something they like to play. Be an announcer and announce every bit, and have the viewers give reward, cheer, and many others. (We had a barrel of monkeys, they usually all the time demanded the “Monkey Track” (pre-twinkle music) for an encore!)

Ping Pong Overview[edit]

Ping Pong Review.jpg

It is a enjoyable apply thought for college students who’re a bit extra superior and have already got extra items to evaluation than they will hold monitor of.

Buy a pack of ping pong balls. You want as many balls as you could have evaluation items. Utilizing a everlasting marker, write the names of the evaluation items one on each ball. Put the balls in a non-transparent bag (a pillow case does positive). For the apply, let the kid randomly pull a ball out of the bag and play the piece.

To guarantee that each evaluation piece shall be performed ultimately, don’t put the used balls again into the bag, however hold them apart till the bag is empty.

Cube Sport Overview[edit]

Order massive foam cube from an academic provider or make your personal with cardboard field. Make up laminated playing cards (the scale of the face of the big cube) with identify of music from related books and an image to characterize the music. Stick Velcro dots to the faces of the die and the other a part of the Velcro dots to the again of the music playing cards and connect 6 songs to the faces of the cube (you possibly can play with one die or two or extra cube). The kid rolls the die to see what music to play for evaluation. You possibly can change the music playing cards every week as acceptable.

Overview Field[edit]

If reviewing older items is a extreme situation on your extra superior and impartial pupil (to the purpose the place she will be able to’t play these items anymore), you possibly can assist her a bit by resuming your in all probability discontinued CD listening routines. If you do not have an issue bribing her, you can even strive the next. Get a small elements storage cupboard with drawers, low-cost and made out of plastic, like those that you could have in your basement workshop for issues like nails or screws. Label every drawer with the identify of a bit that you really want your youngster to evaluation or (within the worst case) to re-master. Fill every drawer with a bit shock merchandise that appeals to your youngster however doesn’t overstretch your finances. The drawers solely maintain small objects anyway. Be very express and exact concerning the guidelines (for instance: “you possibly can take away the label and open the drawer as quickly as you play the piece from starting to finish with all of the repeats in a single swoosh with no upside-down bowing, and sure, you could use the music sheet”) and depart the remainder to the kid.

The Suzuki Medley[edit]

The next exercise is nice for college students who’re extra superior and have so many items to evaluation that they generally overlook how a selected piece (that they maybe have not been reviewing for some time) begins. This drawback will be fastened by a every day apply that you could name “The Medley”. For the Medley, the kid performs Twinkle Theme, however solely the primary couple of notes. Then comply with the primary notes of Flippantly Row, and many others.

Particular apply[edit]

Rent a puppet[edit]


Bored with reminding your six-year-old for the gazillionth time that she will be able to use extra of her bow than simply an inch and that her tone will sound so significantly better? You want a day trip. A trainer assistant or visiting trainer ought to take over. Rent a puppet or a stuffed animal. Puppets make superior trainer assistants. They’re low-maintenance, they is perhaps extra affected person and relaxed than you might be and children love them and hearken to them. A puppet is aware of as a lot about educating an instrument as you do, and you’ll introduce him/her to the kid as an “skilled” for the issue that must be tackled (“Meet Professor Lengthy Bow”).


The next is a favourite train of my younger son that he’s just about by no means getting uninterested in, and solely certainly one of many potential extra choices for the puppet tutoring. Professor Lengthy Bow has the unlucky tendency to get a fly in his eye. As a way to assist him to get that fly out, the kid could make him cry. One of the best ways to take action is to play one thing unhappy, like Go, Inform Aunt Rhody. The sadder the expression, the higher. If the kid does properly, Professor Lengthy Bow will in all probability be sobbing, and his eye shall be okay once more. However he’s so unhappy now, that he wants some cheering up. As you would have guessed, the kid has to play one thing cheerful, like Allegro. The happier the expression, the higher.

Sing the lyrics[edit]

See Observe Concepts for Suzuki College students/Lyrics

Piggy again journey[edit]

Piggies for violin practice.jpg

It is a enjoyable train to enhance your younger kid’s left hand place. She will solely use her left hand effectively when the fingers are in a pleasant place hovering above the strings. The center sections of her fingers must be in a horizontal place. You possibly can name it “tables”.

To apply this place, you possibly can have your youngster play an A scale with a Mississippi Hotdog rhythm, and on every finger that she is setting down, you set some kind of a bit object, like a cheerio or a button or a bit toy like within the image. The purpose is to not let that object fall down whereas she is enjoying.

Specializing in a troublesome musical passage[edit]

Any troublesome collection of notes ought to be practiced individually and absolutely mastered, earlier than the kid makes an attempt to play the entire piece. This can assist to keep away from a number of frustration. There are lots of methods to give attention to a small passage and even on only one measure. You can also make a replica of the sheet music, minimize the passage out and glue it on a ready apply sheet that accommodates a chart with 100 empty cells. Each time when the kid performs the passage, she will be able to test one cell.

Train for good violin place[edit]

Stuffed Bear on Violin.JPG

Some kids have a tough time to maintain themselves upright whereas they’re enjoying and have a tendency to “collapse”. In that case, give Mr. Bear or some other stuffed buddy a journey on the instrument. The kid would not need him to fall down.

This train will also be useful in case your kid’s bow has a behavior of wandering off the Kreisler Freeway in direction of the fingerboard.

Tough Bowing[edit]

Elevator to Greatness[edit]

The next train is nice for items with reasonably troublesome bowing, like sudden up-bows (O Come, Little Kids). You do not want a violin or bow, you simply use your fingers to mimic the bow actions (up and down) whilst you hum or sing the melody alongside. There are a number of choices:

  • The kid takes a stuffed animal and provides it “elevator rides” up and down.

It’s extra enjoyable to do that as a accomplice exercise:

  • The newbie’s method is to carry the kid’s hand like in a handshake, and do the actions collectively.
  • Solely put the guidelines of your proper hand index fingers collectively. Attempt to make large actions however to not lose contact.
  • Each accomplice grabs one finish of a bit of paper tissue or rest room tissue, and then you definately do the actions collectively. Attempt to not tear the paper.

Elevator to Greatness may even be a gaggle exercise:

  • All kids maintain on to the sting of a paper tissue or to a protracted rubber band, and do the actions collectively. A toddler who goofs up is out.

Mah Mah Mee Mee singing[edit]

The next train is enjoyable and useful in case your youngster is getting ready or combating a bit that features sophisticated bowing like a lot of slurs. Give the violin a relaxation, seize the sheet music and mark the slurs on the paper. Use one coloration for down-slurs, and one other coloration for up-slurs. Then sing the piece collectively. No lyrics wanted. The primary time, you sing the entire piece, solely utilizing the syllable “mah” (“mah mah mah mah…”). The second time, you do the identical factor, however use the syllables “mee mee” for up-slurs (“mah mee mee mah mah mah mah…”). After you mastered this, add the syllables “moo moo” for down-slurs. Repeat this as usually as it’s enjoyable, and check out to not peek within the sheet music any extra.

There are numerous variations for this exercise, all relying on what the issue is that you just wish to deal with. It really works for all types of adverse bowing. For a raise for instance, you need to use a clap or yell “hop!”. For a hooked bowing, you need to use different syllables (ask the kid for strategies).

Music studying[edit]

Synchro-reading with magic finger whereas listening or singing[edit]

This apply, beginning even by age 2, has the added advantage of getting ready a baby to be taught to learn phrase texts extra simply later too (sorry if it eliminates some $choolteacher jobs as extra children will be taught to learn and write independently). Transfer the finger alongside left to proper on a web page of sheet music in synch with the place the music is. You possibly can group your hand across the kid’s hand and have a finger of the kid’s hand do the pointing, until they get the concept (intellectually matching the audio and the video) which may occur at a surprisingly early age!

This is applicable to any music, together with large orchestra stuff. Mini-scores of well-known works can be found on the lending library, you should purchase the low-priced Dover version, or if in case you have a giant display screen monitor go to IMSLP Worldwide Music Scores Library Venture.)

Singfinger the classics[edit]

Sure well-known compositions have had bootleg english model phrases written to specific tunes, such because the 1892 “Goin’ residence, goin’ residence” to the largo theme within the second motion of “New World Symphony”, No. 9 previously 5 in E minor, op. 95 by Dvorak. Play the report, finger-track the music, and for the allegro theme within the first motion of the Dvorak sing, “This is a choo choo, first comes the engine, after which a automotive, after which a automotive, after which a automotive, toot toot! Experience this choo choo all the way down to Chicago (which Dvorak truly did in 1893)” and many others., make up your personal phrases in the event you can. Persevering with the Dvorak, quickly you get to a continuation theme which works, “Indian burial floor, turkey within the straw” (repeat eight instances) and many others. Lastly it arrives at G main, my favourite, “Treasured girl, will not you marry me? Frost is on the punkin, however there is a chicken within the tree.”

Train Bruckner rhythm (duplet plus triplet) with the scherzo from the Fourth Symphony: “That Bruckner rhythmical tune, that Bruckner rhythmical tune, that rhythmical tune, that rhythmical tune, that rhythmical rhythmical rhythmical rhythmical Bruckner rhythmical tune” and many others.

Sure prophetic items, like Mozart’s early Symphony 29, Okay 201 (1774) or famously Beethoven’s Fifth, obsessively repeat a rhythmic sample to which you’ll sing “Johannes Brahms”. The Mozart begins, “Mozart! Johannes Brahms, Johannes Brahms, Johannes Mozart! Johannes Brahms, Johannes Brahms, Johannes Mozart!” and many others. Each motion of the piece has a number of Brahms in it.

Schumann’s Quintet op. 44, 4th motion, Allegro non troppo, begins off in 4/Four with “Robert Schuh, Robert Schumann, Robert Schumann, Robert Schuh!” (as in rubber shoe) and many others. A slower side-theme goes, “Cla-ra Schuh, Johnannes Brahms loves you!” (How did they know that in 1842?) The 2nd motion is gradual and mysterious: “It is time… to play… Robert Schumann! Robert Schu… mann… in the present day… hey!”

Elgar’s Enigma Variation theme goes, “Edward Elgar? Certain, I do know him! He is man, his spouse’s actual good, you need to meet them, say, I will take you there… (change to main key) and once we acquired to the door, their canine was humping my leg, he is not allowed in the home, in order that’s the perfect he can do…” (God hasn’t dictated the remainder to me but, I will let you realize).

Laptop composition[edit]

Children are pure born composers. There are lots of web sites out there the place customers of all ages can experiment with composing. An excellent one for Suzuki college students is After you signal your youngster up for a (free) account, he can write his personal music scores, edit, play and save them and even share them with different customers. And guess what: writing your personal scores is a really helpful and interesting method to know sheet music.

Home of Music[edit]

A (nonetheless empty) Home of Music.

The next is a enjoyable mission that can be utilized as an introduction to music studying. Take a sheet of paper, the bigger the higher. Design a tall condo home in cross part view. The home should be a split-level-building with 9 residences on the left facet, and eight residences on the proper (17 half-levels general). The 9 residences on the left characterize the areas between the workers strains, whereas the eight residences to the proper characterize the workers strains themselves. Add a roof that marks the higher ranges as attics, and brick partitions or a horizontal bottom line that mark the decrease ranges as basements. If you wish to, you possibly can add balconies, window sills or different decorations to the residences that characterize the realm of the particular workers strains.

Within the second and final step, make households transfer into the residences. The A-apartment (between 2nd and third line) might home an alligator for instance, or an ant or antelope; no child animals on this condo, as a result of A is an open string and no fingers used. Within the F#-apartment (fifth line) there may reside a fly, a fish or a flamingo, however guarantee that they’ve 1 youngster, since F# is being performed with the first finger. And many others.

Flash playing cards[edit]

On lengthy phrases, it’s a unhealthy behavior to discuss with tones in phrases like “open A” or “first finger on E-string”. Tones have names: A, F sharp, and many others., they usually have a notation: between the 2nd and third line, on the fifth line, and many others. A handy approach to train and apply these references is with flash playing cards. There are prefabricated flash playing cards out there, or you can also make your personal.

There are lots of potential issues that may be finished with the flash playing cards. You probably have 2 college students, you possibly can even play video games:

  • Present a flash card (with a observe) to the primary youngster. The kid performs the tone on his violin. The second youngster who can hear and see the sibling however not the flash card has to put in writing the observe down. If the notes are equivalent, the youngsters rating, in any other case you rating.

Musical Rummy[edit]

Violin Music Reading Cards.JPG

This card sport helps starting music readers to ascertain and to internalize the affiliation between a selected observe (for instance C#) and the corresponding fingering on the violin (2nd finger on A-string). You want a self-made deck of playing cards that matches each observe that you just wish to train with the corresponding fingering (the latter both in phrases or in graphic). For a starting pupil, eight pairs will in all probability do. Later you possibly can add extra, till the entire 1st place is roofed. Right here come the foundations for the sport:

  • The seller offers Four playing cards to every participant (if in case you have 16 or extra pairs, deal not less than 6 playing cards).
  • The additional playing cards go on a pile, face down.
  • The primary participant takes 1 card from the pile and provides it to his hand. If he can match any pairs, he places them on the desk, face up. Final, he chooses 1 card from his hand that he does not want and places it on a brand new pile, face up.
  • The second participant takes 1 card both from the lined or from the open pile. And many others.
  • Winner is the participant who’s the primary to do away with all of his playing cards.

There are lots of variations potential, relying on what specific ability you wish to apply. In case you additionally wish to set up the names of the notes (for instance “C#”), you need to use triplet playing cards as an alternative of pairs, or you possibly can declare that each participant who places a pair on the desk should say the identify.

Musical spelling[edit]

Some composers used the names of tones to spell messages that they may disguise of their compositions. Bach for instance used B-A-C-H (H = [German] B-natural), and Dmitri Shostakovich used D-S-C-H (S = [German] Es = E-flat). Within the Sextet op. 36 Brahms used A-G-A-H-E in honor of Agathe, a lady buddy he had needed to break up with. Consider a phrase that solely accommodates the letters A, B, C, D, E, F and G (examples: unhealthy, face, edge), write it down in musical notes, and let the kid work out which phrase the notes characterize. Then change roles.

There are lots of phrases that may be spelled simply utilizing the “musical alphabet” from the treble clef. It’s useful for college students studying observe recognition/studying and to memorize their treble clef. Attempt making playing cards or Powerpoint slides with phrases and have the coed write the corresponding notes on the workers that match the phrase they see. Will also be finished within the reverse (giving them the notes and having the coed fill within the blanks with the phrase that’s indicated by the notes).

Stradizuki: apply machine for “Suzuki orphans”[edit]


In “They’re Hardly ever Too Younger… and By no means Too Outdated to Twinkle!” by Kay Collier Slone, a photograph exhibits a 2-year-old woman with one thing like a violin below her chin which seems to be a field of Crackerjacks with the sweet nonetheless inside (once you shake it, it feels like a rattle) and a protracted bar or slat of wooden taped to the field. Somebody within the Madison, WI Suzuki program thought up this concept to deal with a youthful sibling with “violin tendencies”, i.e. one who needs to get her fingers on an older sibling’s $100 instrument, an uncomfortable household scenario.

The issue is solved by making an affordable, repairable or replaceable quasi-violin for the youthful youngster which truly makes noise (rhythm instrument), thus the toddler is inspired to take part in household group music making, collect self-confidence and many others. (They do not perceive pitch until age Three anyway.)

This concept was prolonged via sure beforehand neglected supplies at a Recycling Heart not removed from Madison, Wis., the place somebody hooked up a flat wood bar to a cookie tin (on one facet) and a part of a plastic bottle and a cat meals can (on the opposite facet). The ensuing fiddle-like contraption, to which additional strings or coathanger wires will be added, is the Stradizuki (Zooky for brief, or whether it is extra like a guitar, i.e. large with a number of pluckable plastic bottle bottoms hooked up, Stratozooky).

Kratzenbogen (Bogie)[edit]

A notched stick, scraped throughout the rim of a cookie tin, cardboard field, bottle phase or cat meals can or throughout an fringe of the wooden bar, produces in every case a special loud noise, additional assorted by velocity and depth of stroke. This rasp-stick, the Kratzenbogen, or Bogie for brief, is arguably a fundamental introductory music gadget, as a result of when positioned within the hand of even a new child child it may possibly promote “co-ordinatory” schooling within the type of simultaneous notion of sound and vibrations. Bogie-stroking helps a terrible-twos toddler categorical explosive passions harmlessly, builds up bowing arm muscle and sense of rhythm. The kid can wander round the home making an attempt out the Bogie on totally different edges and surfaces ensuing within the beginnings of an engineering schooling.

(Observe: restrict size of bogie to 10 inches or much less for eye security causes!)


Even safer within the hand of a new child, that is the highest 2-Three inches or backside 2 inches minimize from any inexperienced plastic beverage bottle (7up, Mountain Dew and many others.). The child can rub the bigger mouth of it in opposition to a concrete flooring, display screen, grate or washboard expressing a number of noise, or kratz a bogie throughout the highest (slim) mouth. Fitted with a wooden deal with stuffed within the bottle neck and held with the bigger mouth upright with stones or {hardware} within the cup, it may be shaken to provide a rattly sound (Statue of Liberty Cowbell). Clunky: a rotund object as much as the scale of a golf ball will be hooked up by a size of doubled phone wire or recycled headphone wire (ten inches or much less to forestall strangulation) forming that basic toy the place you “swing it up and land it within the cup” (Clunk!).

Plucking on the rim of the bigger mouth (the place the bottle was minimize) produces a special type of tone relying on what sort of bottle it was minimize from– think about a rhythm part of a number of children plucking totally different pluckycups whereas someone kratzes a zooky and a soloist performs a melody instrument akin to a recorder. This plucking apply readies a baby for guitar previous to the hundred greenback instrument readiness age and likewise readies the fingers for keyboards, musical and computorial.

Extra concepts[edit]

Composer Quiz[edit]

That is an exercise for college students who’re a bit extra superior, however are nonetheless working with E-book 1 or 2. You possibly can quiz these children with the names of the composers who wrote the items that they’ve lately been finding out or that they’re about to check. You possibly can even put together a reminiscence card sport the place the gamers have to mix the identify of a bit and the identify of the composer.

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