Posts Tagged "music"

Left Hand Pizz. and the Beginning Student

If you think back in your journey learning the violin or viola you probably were taught extended techniques at the intermediate or advanced stages of learning. There is good reason for this; many extended techniques are too difficult for beginning students and with all there is to learn as a beginner, unnecessary complication should be […]

Dependency and the Musician

In this post I would like to expand the discussion of learning by rote/ear and music reading to discuss the relationship between each and the connection to dependency. By dependency I am referring to that which we need in order to learn a piece of music. In our earliest stages of learning as a student […]

Learning by Rote or Reading Music; Which is Easier?

I recently came across a video on youtube of an intermediate/advanced violinist who has been acclaimed as a child prodigy. One commenter noted that this individual learns all their music my ear and does not know how to read. Another commenter posted that it is easier to learn music by ear than to read music. […]

The Value of Teaching Open String Songs

The Beginning Violinist: A Companion Book for Children and Adults starts out with Open String Songs. I wanted to briefly give you some of the benefits of using Open String Songs with your students!   1) Open String Songs help students more quickly understand where notes are located on the fingerboard.   Students of any […]

The Practicing Myth

What I call “the practicing myth” comes in various forms, but it always goes something like this:   “My kids hate to practice, and I don’t want them to hate music, so taking music lessons must not be for them.” If parents took that perspective with other things it might sound something like this: “My […]

Teaching Vibrato: A Guide for Teachers

There are a variety of ways to teach violin vibrato as well as several different types of vibrato. The arm vibrato and the wrist vibrato are the two most common forms of vibrato. I teach an arm vibrato. Some argue that an arm vibrato is not as versatile as a wrist vibrato, but I have seen violinists of all […]

To learn by ear or by reading music: That is the question…

With the introduction of the Suzuki method in the United States came an increase awareness and division between those who learn music by ear and those who learn by reading music. For those unfamiliar with the Suzuki method please read my following post outlining its basic tenants, history and success in the US: Since this […]

Studio Recitals and Teacher Performance

Studio Recitals are a wonderful opportunity for students to showcase for family and friends all the hard work they have done. It’s also a great benchmark for students to work toward and a time for them to realize how far they have come since their last performance. I recently got asked by a parent if I […]

Questions to ask Prospective Teachers

When it comes to choosing a teacher for yourself or your child you want to make sure the teacher you choose will give you quality instruction. Teaching philosophies, techniques and goals will greatly impact what kind of instruction each teacher gives. It can be an overwhelming task to pick a teacher, especially if you don’t […]

The Marriage of the School and Private Instructor

Picture with me an elementary school stage,… …a full audience of parents and friends, and a procession of young violin students parading across the platform with their instruments neatly tucked under their right arms. When they reach their positions they stop and face forward, waiting for their cue, eyes on their instructor who follows the […]

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