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Saturday, April 2, 2011

Suzuki Triangle

In order for a Suzuki journey to be fulfilling, there need to be three collaborators working in tandem to nurture the child's musical and personal growth.

The Teacher
  • Expert on the instrument
  • Expert on Suzuki philosophy
  • Diagnostician - identifies problems that might be preventing a child from reaching her potential
  • Doctor - prescribes solutions to those problems
  • Has an eye on long term goals, identifies intermediary steps toward those goals
  • Communicates expectations to parents and students
  • Determines when the Student is ready to start learning a new skill or piece
  • Determines when the Student is ready to perform a piece
  • Treats Student and Parent with respect and trust
The Parent
  • "At Home Teacher," works directly
  • Secretary and silent observer in the lesson
  • Caretaker, keeper of family routine
  • Makes sure to understand and follow through on weekly assignments and long term assignments
  • Ensures that child has adequate opportunities to practice and to listen to the recording
  • Ensures that child is repeating a skill an adequate number of times and with adequate focus
  • Is constantly finding creative ways to keep practice joyful and interesting for the child
  • Provides positive reinforcement for every success
  • Ensures that child is prepared for the lesson
  • Takes advantage of workshop and institute opportunities
  • Keeps the teacher apprised of child's mood, and events at school or home which might have an effect on the lesson
  • Treats the Teacher and Student with respect and trust
The Student
  •  Cooperates with the parent at home during practice
  • Cooperates with the teacher during the lesson
  • Cooperates with his peers in group class, concerts etc.
  • Listens carefully to instructions
  • Is an engaged learner
  • Treats the Teacher and Parent with respect and trust
Problems arise if and when any of the three corners of the triangle lapses, but when the triangle is functioning well, the child makes continued progress. No individual is perfect, and there are times in every case, with every student, when progress slows and frustrations arise. That's normal. But those are the times when each member of the Suzuki Triangle should assess the situations and make changes as necessary.

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