Music: The Suzuki Method

The Suzuki Method of learning music follows the immersion concept of learning a native language. The Suzuki Method differs from most traditional music schools in two ways:

  • Firstly, children are taught how to play a musical instrument by listening first before they learn to read musical notation (most other music schools focus first on learning to reading musical notation). They first learn to play musical pieces by ear and thereafter only learn to read musical notation.
  • The age for learning music through the Suzuki Method is from 3-4 years. Most music programs recommend a starting age of about 6-7 years. The reason for starting early is because younger children are more easily guided, have less external distractions (e.g. school), and they will come to accept music as a regular part of their daily routine much like eating a meal or brushing their teeth.

With the Suzuki Method, students receive both private individual lessons and group lessons with other students. The latter helps them learn to play music alongside other musicians and to perform in front of others.

More about the Suzuki Method.

Books on the Suzuki Method:

  • Nurtured by Love – This book is the cornerstone upon which to build any Suzuki-oriented library. In it the author presents the philosophy and principles of Suzuki’s teaching methods. Through the examples from his own life and teaching, Suzuki establishes his case for early childhood education and the high potential of every human being, not just those seemingly gifted.
  • Ability Development from Age Zero – Recommended for parents of Suzuki Method(R) students. In this sequel to Nurtured by Love, Dr. Suzuki states that “the fate of the child is in the hands of his parents.” With this book he shows how to create a warm environment which will encourage any child to become a happy, loving and talented human being.
  • To Learn With Love: A Companion for Suzuki Parents – Practice, motivation, learning, nutrition, competition and family lifestyles are a few of the topics discussed by these experienced teachers, performers, and parents. Treasured as a handbook by many Suzuki parents!
  • Studying Suzuki Piano: More Than Music – A comprehensive coverage of what the Suzuki approach embodies, this book should be considered a requirement in the home of every piano teacher and student. Eight of the 14 chapters lay the foundation for understanding Suzuki’s Mother Tongue Approach, its procedures and its benefits. The authors have given their ideas of what it takes to be a Suzuki teacher, how to structure an effective lesson, what to cover in those first lessons and how to do it. Using more than 400 musical examples, the teaching points and the interpretation of the seven volumes of music are presented. In addition, some alternate fingerings are suggested and places where the Suzuki edition departs from the original edition are noted.
  • How to Teach Suzuki Piano – a brief but valuable booklet about teaching Suzuki piano. Directed towards parents and teachers. Originally published in Japan by Dr. Suzuki’s Talent Education Institute.

Suzuki Method Books for Piano and Violin:

Suzuki Method(R) Core Materials available for piano, violin, viola, cello, string bass, flute, harp, guitar, and recorder.

The Suzuki Method(R) of Talent Education is based on Dr. Shinichi Suzuki’s view that every child is born with ability, and that man is the son of his environment. According to Dr. Suzuki, a world-renowned violinist and teacher, the greatest joy an adult can know comes from developing a child’s potential so he/she can express all that is harmonious and best in human beings. Students are taught using the “mother-tongue” approach. Suzuki Violin School materials include: Violin Parts (Vol. 1-10) * Piano Accompaniments (Vol. 1-10) * Cassettes (Vol. 1-3 performed by Shinichi Suzuki, Vol. 4-8 performed by Koji Toyoda) * Compact Discs (Vol. 5-8, performed by Koji Toyoda) * David Cerone Performs Suzuki Violin School (Cassettes & Compact Discs, Vol. 1-4) * David Nadien Performs Suzuki Violin School (Cassettes and Compact Discs, Vol. 1-4).
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