Using E. Sprunger’s Building Violin Skills

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Tiffany said: Aug 24, 2015
Tiffany Osborn
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki in the Schools, Viola
Los Angeles, CA
41 posts

Hi Everyone

I have been trying to incorporate Sprunger’s excellent book Building Violin Skills for parents of new students, but I am realizing through trial and error, that I need to be more specific about reading assignments, and let them know I will have follow-up questions. I’m having trouble getting parents to do their homework! So, I want to improve the way I am communicating what I expect them to complete on a weekly basis.

Has anyone broken down sections/pages for weekly assignments? How many pages do you do? I wish I had an opportunity to take a class with Edmund to learn how he breaks it down, but alas, life gets in the way.

I would appreciate any input you’re willing to share on how you use it in your studio!

Thanks!

-tiffany

Edmund Sprunger said: Aug 24, 2015
Edmund SprungerTeacher Trainer
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
Saint Louis, MO
99 posts

I’ll be very interested in hearing what others have to say about this!

Edmund Sprunger
sprungerstudio.com
yespublishing.com

Laura said: Aug 25, 2015
 
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
Stanton, MN
25 posts

I am using this book for the first time as the parent “user guide” for my batch of beginners this year. I have my lesson plans divided into 11 lessons. I start on a box, then transition to a violin. By week 11, we have worked out way through this book. There are other things I bring into the lessons aside from just this book. As with every student, I know that each individual students pace will emerge during this time.

The first 4 weeks of lessons include a parent only orientation class separate from the student lesson. This class starts a week before the student lessons. by the end of this four week class the parents will have completed the parent phase in this book and have learned some basics of playing the violin. I am starting the student during the parent phase.

I will post in a few months how this worked out. All great plans must always pass the test of experience!

Meghan Coil said: Aug 25, 2015
Meghan Coil
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
Portland, OR
16 posts

I do something similar to your program, Laura, in that I do a parent-only phase first where we work through BVS before the student’s lessons start. We get through the book in seven weeks. I realized early on that I would need a way to guarantee that parents were actually getting out of the book the things I was assuming they were getting out of it, so I basically created a companion workbook of questions that they answer as they read, then when we meet we discuss their answers/comments. It took a long time to create and I went through several drafts with different generations of beginners. Some questions are simple comprehension questions to make sure they got concepts that are most important to me but I also added reflection questions that give them a chance to discuss how a concept applies to their child in particular, or to them in particular. For example, I might say, “Did you have any of the “typical concerns” Sprunger lists? Are you satisfied with his reply? Did you have any concerns that he did not address?” Or: “How else could Perry have handled the situation with Adrian ‘feeling behind’?” Or: “How is your temperament like your child’s? How is it different?” etc. I try to start new families in groups specifically so that these discussions involve multiple parents, but I’ll do it one-on-one if necessary. Having a group of parents together makes it a lively and interesting discussion where I’m getting to know the parents well and they are getting to know each other, too. These discussions take the place of group lesson before the students’ lessons start.

Vasuhi Klinker said: Sep 6, 2015
Vasuhi Klinker
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
12 posts

Does this work for any age student or is the BVS for pre-twinklers ages btw 2 and 4?

Tiffany said: Sep 6, 2015
Tiffany Osborn
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki in the Schools, Viola
Los Angeles, CA
41 posts

I would say it’s for any parent who is going to practice with their child, regardless of the age.

Thanks everyone for your input, I’m going to try to put together a companion workbook too, that’s a good idea- it probably won’t be done for this batch of new parents though!

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