The Suzuki Method is based on the principle that every child has ability. Considering every child can learn their native tongue with relative ease, the same natural learning approach can be applied to music instruction through a nurturing and encouraging environment.
Parents should read Nurtured by Love by Shinichi Suzuki prior to the start of lessons. Beginners will need to purchase Suzuki Violin School Volume 1 and CD (available from Shar, iTunes, and Amazon) and should begin listening to the CD as early and often as possible.
PLEASE DO NOT PURCHASE A VIOLIN YET! Beginners initially work on a box violin and bow with a foot chart, all of which I provide, to learn fundamental technique and care for the instrument.
Following mastery of the box violin curriculum, or if a transfer student, the student is responsible for purchasing or renting an instrument. I will help guide the sizing and selection process.
Parents must bring a recording device and blank notebook to all lessons for videos and detailed lesson notes to aid home practice.
What do I need to start Mini Musicians?
Your one-time registration fee covers your class materials, including the CD and handbook of the class curriculum, plus class journal. All other instruments and materials are provided by me!
Is the Suzuki Method only for beginners or young children?
Although the Suzuki Method is famous for training young students, the method is a learning approach for students of all ages and abilities.
Students can develop from beginning stages to highly advanced levels of playing, but most importantly, the method aims to cultivate character, excellence, and a value for lifelong learning.
As the Suzuki approach is not confined merely to the repertoire within the Suzuki books, advanced students continue with standard violin repertoire.
Is my child too young to start violin lessons?
The minimum requirements to begin formal violin lessons are that the child needs to be at least three years old, fully potty-trained, and able to follow basic instructions.
If your child is too young or not ready quite yet, you can still begin their music education and nurture their ability now by joining Mini Musicians, a Suzuki Early Childhood Education class for prenatal through age 3. The class is designed to be a springboard into private lessons and will help nurture the skills your child needs to be successful.
You can also get a head start by reading Suzuki's Nurtured by Love and Ability Development from Age Zero, listening to the Suzuki Violin School CDs, observing lessons with your child, and starting parent classes!
Is my child too young for Mini Musicians? If they can't walk or talk, will they get anything out of the experience?
It is never too early to invest in your child's education and provide quality, wholesome learning and life experiences! Your child's first 1,000 days are a critical period of development, and these early childhood experiences can shape their entire life.
"At birth, an infant’s brain is only 25 percent of the size of an average adult’s brain. Incredibly, by 3 years of age, a child’s brain has grown to 90 percent of that of an adult. During infancy and early childhood, children are flooded with new experiences that impact their brain development. The first 3 years of a child’s life offer parents an amazing opportunity (and accompanying responsibility) to shape their child’s growth and form healthy habits that will last a lifetime."
- from Ten Things Every Child Needs DVD, produced by the McCormick Tribune Foundation
Even if your child is not old enough to actively participate, listening and observation are equally effective. (Imagine not talking or reading to your child until they were old enough to speak or read!) Learning through the immersive, educationally rich environment of Suzuki Early Childhood Education fuels participation and nurtures baby to their moment of readiness.
The class is specially designed to be multi-age and multi-level for the express purpose of allowing younger children to learn from the example of older children and parents, just as they would pick up their native language; older, more experienced students add more advanced learning layers and gain confidence as they assume leadership roles in the class.
Give your baby an amazing head start through Mini Musicians!
Is my child too old to start violin lessons?
It’s most ideal for beginning Suzuki students to start lessons between the ages of 3 and 7, in conjunction with language-learning years. Non-beginners are accepted up to age 18, in addition to parents who wish to learn prior to or alongside their children.
Is my child too old for Mini Musicians?
It's most ideal to start this class before the age of three. Between the ages of three and four, we aim to transition the child into private music lessons as they are ready.
Do you teach adults?
Parents are welcome and encouraged to take lessons prior to or alongside their child, but otherwise, The Yarbrough Studio does not provide lessons for adults.
Do you teach other instruments besides violin?
As my expertise is in teaching and playing violin, I do not teach other instruments.
Can we meet you?
I would love to meet you!
Children over age three and parents are both invited to observe lessons free of charge. This is the easiest way for the child to meet me, see what Suzuki violin lessons are like, and for both of you to feel inspired about your future experience.
Children age 3 and under are encouraged to join the Mini Musicians class.
Can we schedule an introductory lesson?
Only non-beginners or transfer students have the option of an introductory lesson.
This is a time for all of us to get to know each other and for me to assess where the student is so we can plan on how best to move forward together. No commitment to further lessons is expected unless we (parent, teacher, and child) all mutually agree that we make a good fit and wish to continue with enrollment.
Normal lesson rates* do apply.
*Varies by studio location
If I have a musical or Suzuki background, do I still attend parent class for beginning violin students?
Yes, all parents of beginning students or those starting Suzuki lessons for the first time attend parent class. There are only three sessions, but the content is valuable for parents of all experience levels. As caring, involved parents, you will love the chance to learn everything you can about your child's lessons so you get the most out of this experience together!
At the sessions, you will receive exclusive studio information as well as my Parent Packet, which is my own book that I distribute to parents at the class and which will continue to be an ongoing resource throughout your child's lesson experience. Parents also receive their own studio goodie bag with other essential materials at the end of the course!