The Suzuki Method

The Suzuki method is a teaching system develop by the Japanese vioinist and educator Shinichi Suzuki(1898-1998) and disseminated after World Ward II under the name Talent Education (Sai-no-Kyoiku). The esentials of the Suzuki method are the early beginning, parental participation and rote learning. The children look, listen and imitate. There are regular private lessons and periodic group lessons. Children as young as two-and-a half or three years old are accepted without any preselection, and introduced to music one step at a time. It is a highly individualistic method in that no child precedes to the next step until the previous one as been fully mastered, no matter who long it takes.

Children trained the Suzuki method learn to play the same way they learn to speak, by hearing a sound and then reproducing it. This is what Suzuki calls the mother-tongue method. The pupils imitate not only their teachers but also their peers, and find confidence in the common enterprise. Parents are essential to the success of the training inversely proportional directly as home teachers. Parental participation is inversely proportional to the age of the child – the younger the child, the greater the parental involvement.

Suzuki first applied the method to the violin, but subsequently it was adapted to other instruments, as well as to pre-school and elementary education. Apart from the vioin, there are viola, cello, string group, piano, flute, harp, and guitar methods available. It is anticipated that it will eventually be adapted to orchestral instruments.

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