Suzuki Cello Institute Australia

Takao's Talk page

-What I think about Suzuki Method-

      June topic:  Graduation Recording

 What is Suzuki Graduation system?  Is it an exam? Assessment?  A goal?

  • Dr Suzuki was always telling us 'now we can start work on the piece to make it magnificent.' once the student learned the piece. 
  • It is important to keep working on to play the piece magnificently and splendidly, even after the recording is made.

  • You record what the child can play already.   We should put pressure to work towards the 'next graduation piece' in order to attain the certificate
  • This is because Suzuki Method aims to build internal ability, and to build up the ability, sometimes you need to spend time. 
  • When we push our children into making the recording by the due date, we may crash the seed of potential too early.

  • When the teacher said to record it, you have reached the level that is sufficient for working towards the polishing the piece. Therefore there is no child who fails the graduation recording.

  • If your teacher doesn't suggest you to record to graduate, this means your child is at the important stage of developing abilities by going deeper, not faster. Ignoring this may cost your child's future ability development. As a parent, enjoy every bit of digging deeper.  
  • Dr Suzuki used to listen to each recording and commented on each one. He respected the students' effort, and so is your teacher today.

  •  Graduation level is a milestone in the child's development journey.
  •  Therefore, Graduation recording is an act of celebration to mark a milestone.
  • Because it's a milestone, you attempt your best for the recording, not because you won't pass otherwise!  
  • I tell you this again - Dr Suzuki was always telling us 'now we can start work on the piece to make it magnificent.' once the student learned the piece. -- This is the secret of ability growth Dr Suzuki discovered.

Practice at home ( Difference between Suzuki and Traditional)

1 Philosophy: The Suzuki Method is based on the philosophy that all children have the potential to learn and develop skills, just as they learn to speak their native language. This is in contrast to traditional methods that may focus more on talent and inborn ability.

2 Early Start: The Suzuki Method emphasizes starting music lessons at a young age, typically around 3 years old, to take advantage of the child's natural ability to learn and absorb information.

3 Listening: In the Suzuki Method, listening to recordings of the music in the all the repertoire is a key component of practice. This helps the student to develop a strong sense of pitch, rhythm, and musical expression from within, in more organic way using the student’s cultivated ability, rather than learning these through the teacher’s instructions.  

4 Repetition: The Suzuki Method uses a lot of repetition in practice, with the goal of building muscle memory and developing fluency in the music being studied. This can help the student to progress more quickly.  The differences between The Suzuki Method and traditional method application when it comes to repetition though, is seen in how the repetition is applied within the concept of revision and ability development.  Whilst the application of repetition in the difficult passages is widely used in the traditional method learning, Suzuki Method regards the repetition as a tool to develop innate ability, as seen in the Mother Tongue acquisition.  Where the already learned pieces of music are repeated over time, in the form of revision, this helps to develop the playing the second nature similar in the way the first language acquisition process.  Suzuki Method uniquely repeats what the students are already able to do well.  

5 Parental Involvement: Parents are strongly encouraged to be actively involved in the learning process in the Suzuki Method, attending lessons with their child, practicing with them at home, and providing a supportive environment for learning. 

Recommended Reading

Suzuki, the man and his philosophy. Herman, E. (1981). Athens, Ohio: Ability Development Associates. Link

Everything Depends on How We Raise Them. Tanaka, Shigeki (2003) Educating Young Children by Suzuki Method

 In search of the Japanese spirit in Talent Education. Bauman, S. (1994). Seacaucus, New Jersey: Summy Birchard.

 Shinichi Suzuki: Man of Love. Honda Masaki. (1984). Princeton, NJ: Birch Tree Group.

Talent education of Shinichi Suzuki 
– An analysis.WIP Landers, R. (1995). Princeton, NJ: Daniel Press.

Man and Talent: Search into the unknown. Suzuki, S. (1986). Ann Arbor, Michigan: Shar Products Co.

Between Parent & Teacher. Kempter, S. (1991), Shar Pub.

Parents' Guide to Suzuki Method. Thornton, A. (1983), Omnibus Press

Sensibility in Education. Kataoka, H. (1993), Piano Basics Inc.


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