Question about young siblings and summer suzuki workshops

Danielle Kravitz said: Feb 12, 2015
Danielle KravitzInstitute Director
Suzuki Association Member
Viola, Suzuki Early Childhood Education, Violin
64 posts

I don’t have any direct suggestions. I just wanted to point out that with a 6 year old attending, you might want to look into the institute’s requirements. Many of them require that a parent attend the class along with the student (if the student is that young).

So I imagine that would probably affect your planning….

Sue Hunt said: Feb 13, 2015
Sue HuntViola, Violin
403 posts

If you have a motherly relation available at the time of the institute, I strongly recommend bringing her/him too.

Anna said: Feb 13, 2015
Anna Draper
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Meade, KS
4 posts

Hi Lisa,

Some institutes have activities and classes for little ones. Some institutes just have lots of great family fun things to do. In my experience, parents often bring a grandparent, older cousin, aunt etc. to babysit. If that is not an option, you might still be able to make it work. Often institute participants have a large group class, small group class and private lesson (over the course of an hour with 2-3 other children rotating for individual lesson time). You would need to be present and available for the private lesson—for the other sessions you would need to be nearby, but you could entertain a two year old close by. My two year old sits in on lessons while I teach with a few toys, coloring papers, tablet and snack. Between those items she does pretty well for 2-3 hours straight. Mine is over naps….naps if you are on a strict routine could be tricky. Classes usually wrap up around 3:00. There is usually a lunch break and it is possible that your daughter’s classes would have enough of a break in between to squeeze a nap in. Also, if you know another family attending or if your daughter (or you) make a friend they might be willing to help out. Chances are you won’t be the only one with a two year old. If you find a kid of babysitting age hanging around during the private lesson time, you might be able to rope them in for a few bucks.

I am an optimist and I think institutes are a great experience even for the little ones who are not playing yet. My daughter attended one with my mother when she was 18 months old while I was doing a teacher training class. After a day of observation, she started picking up objects she could play like a violin. I don’t know of any that offer babysitting…but that sure would be a great idea!

On a side note, does anyone know of an institute that offers childcare?

Melanie Drake said: Feb 13, 2015
Melanie Drake36 posts

The Greater Pittsburgh Suzuki Institute offers childcare. I believe it used to be provided by institute staff, but I seem to remember it changing recently such that the institute will help you to find a babysitter. Someone can correct me if I’m wrong.

Rebecca Ark said: Feb 24, 2015
 12 posts

American Suzuki Institute in WI also has childcare!

Kim said: Mar 2, 2015
 39 posts

We have been to a bunch of institutes. Of course, it’s ideal to have an adult per child. But I’ve seen many parents tag team 2 young playing kids, or have a younger sibling tagging along for the ride. The master class is really the most important class for the parent to be in the room at all times and everyone needs to be quiet. Other than that, I’ve seen a real mix of parents coming and going depending on siblings, their own schedule (some parents work remotely at institute), etc.

Like other people said, some do offer some child care and/or some early childhood class options that you could mix into your day. You can e-mail the camps directly if you have special requests (like it would be best if your master class was early in the day, or wanted to know how friendly they are to younger sibs, or whatever).

Lesli said: Apr 6, 2015
 Violin, Piano
7 posts

If you come to the Ithaca institute, the Ithaca Montessori has a “camp” in the summer for kids as young as 18 months, I believe. It would be one more expense, but it’s possible.

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