charging for penalty.

Nobuaki said: May 11, 2006
Nobuaki Tanaka
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Viola
Chicago, IL
115 posts

hello

do you think good idea to charge penalty during the lesson? for example, if you drop a bow 25 cent, drop violin 50 cent, forgot the book 50 cent. etc. It may help to improve students’ discipline and behavior, but also talking about money to children may not good idea. So i can’t decide about this issue.

thank you

Connie Sunday said: May 11, 2006
Connie SundayViolin, Piano, Viola
660 posts

No, I don’t think so. I’m reading William Starr’s _The Suzuki Violinist_ and the thing is not to break the child’s spirit. This is not the way, to punish them, even in small ways.

Frequent expression of praise is better, and not negative things.

violinmusic

hello

do you think good idea to charge penalty during the lesson? for example, if you drop a bow 25 cent, drop violin 50 cent, forgot the book 50 cent. etc. It may help to improve students’ discipline and behavior, but also talking about money to children may not good idea. So i can’t decide about this issue.

thank you

Free Handouts for Music Teachers & Students: http://beststudentviolins.com/guide.html#handouts

Laurel said: May 11, 2006
Laurel MacCulloch
Suzuki Association Member
Violin
Langley, BC
120 posts

You could try having them earn points when they DO remember the book, keep the bow in their hand, their violin in their hand. Then they can save up points for some little prize—say up to 100? Could be especially helpful for group classes—not “who gets the most points” but “how many get over 100 points by the end of the month” or whatever time.

Laurel

said: May 11, 2006
 55 posts

One teacher I observed at an institute did charge the students for infractions, but used food. “Next time you drop your bow you owe me a muffin.” I don’t know that he really expected to be paid, but there were some muffins delivered. The food made it fun, and the point was made.

Mariam said: May 12, 2006
Mariam GregorianViolin
Ashburn, VA
34 posts

I do charge penalties, but it depends on the child and the situation. For example, I would charge a child a nickel for bow dropping if a.) I had been reminding them for a long time and b.) I thought it would work for this child. It’s certainly not fair if there are other issues going on. But if it is an issue of caring, then I’d say it is appropriate. Most often, they think it’s really funny and I don’t need to charge them anything because they start remembering!
I do charge penalties for older, more advanced students that repeatedly play wrong notes. Yesterday I announced to a 14 year old that I would be charging $1 starting next week for a wrong note that has been circled in blood for about three months. Something tells me that this might do the trick…

Melissa said: May 12, 2006
 Piano, Flute
151 posts

Cute. As long as it is done in jest, fine.

Rebecca said: May 14, 2006
 Piano
23 posts

I have been known to dock minutes of lesson time for untrimmed fingernails. It really is one of my hugest pet peeves. It is simply a requirement to have short nails for piano, yes—all the time! If you want long nails for prom, fine. But if you show up to your lesson with me, with clearly too-long nails, I take ten minutes off the lesson. If the student in question has nail clippers with them, or some way of shortening their nails in that amount of time, then great and that is what it is supposed to be used for. We continue with better results! But if no clippers, I still end the lesson ten minutes early to prove the point.
I only do this after two or three warnings, of course. And I’ve only had to do it a few times, but it seemed to make its point!

“Life without music would be a mistake.” -Nietsche

Cynthia Faisst said: May 16, 2006
Cynthia Faisst
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki Early Childhood Education
Irvine, CA
122 posts

I really think parents are responsible for these kind of behaviors.

I am always looking for ways to motivate parents to see that they get taken care of before the lesson. Some parents need some parenting advice about how to organize a child for lessons before they leave the house. They just don’t know how to help their children become prepared people.
For some families and children these are personal habits that need training in the lesson. That is what some parents are paying for for. You need to develop the person before you can develop the musician.

I do keep a pair of nail trimmers available for students and nail brushes in the bathroom. One year I gave all of the children little manicure sets as their holiday gift from the studio. Was that a hint?

I just saw them as required equipment with everything else. Clean hands, clean violin.

Are your hands wearing their smiles.

Ms. Cynthia
Studio:
Talent Education Center: Suzuki Violin
Director of Santa Ana Suzuki Strings located at the
Orange County Children’s Therapeutic Arts Center
Volunteer, bring music to under-served communities around the world. Create Sound Investments and Futures.

said: May 16, 2006
 55 posts

On the subject of trim fingernails, if my students show up with fingernails that are too long then I get to trim them. Most don’t like the way I trim so they remember to trim ahead of time. A few years ago, I had a particularly bad year for untrimmed fingernails and I was getting tired of trimming every day. What amazed me was that parents just sat there, not even embarrassed that I was chastizing them again. I guess if I did it every week they knew they didn’t have to bother. So, I warned students in December that after Christmas I was going to be much stricter on the nail-trimming. The first week back in January, a notice appeared on my door advising all students that my manicure serivces were no longer available and that any student arriving with untrimmed nails would not receive a lesson. Fortunately, many people saw the humour (about my manicure services) in my notice, and everyone showed up with trimmed fingernails for the rest of the year!

Cynthia Faisst said: Jun 11, 2006
Cynthia Faisst
Suzuki Association Member
Violin, Suzuki Early Childhood Education
Irvine, CA
122 posts

I live in CA where women spend and inordinant amount of money and time on their manicures both hands and toes. They go to shops that do nothing but manicure and beauty services. On one hand I have 3 year olds who show up with custom nail tatoos on every nail from head to foot. On the other hand I have Jr. high kids show up with the last art project still stuck under their nails.

Maybe we need such a business that specialize on children. :confused: Scruffy hands in a rural community I would understand. I grew up in a place where children helped with chores and spent a great deal of time playing out side climbing trees and playing in the dirt. Yet these moms were more festidious about a child’s clean neat hands than their own hand care. Nothing fancy just the basics.

Yet as you say, some moms spend very little time checking the hands of their children to see if they can hold a pencil successfully let alone a bow. Young Children need to have access to their finger tips for many educational purposes. Small children are not always cooperative about letting the adults in their life trim their nails. I have one mom say that she has to sneak up on her preschool child when he is sleeping.

I find my self doing things like this for children because a few of my moms know that the kids can’t argue with me. “you see she’s going to embarace you like that if we don’t get it done at home.” (Especially my single parents.) Its not on dad’s priority list of disappline issues untill it interferes with doing homework or staying out of the Doctors office. Parents need 2nd and 3rd party backup sometimes.

Some of my kids have extremely sensitive finger tips. The kid that is biting her nails all the time complains about standing her fingers up on the finger board. This is a Jr. higher. I have some Indian children who have extrememly hard finger nails that are painful to trim if you don’t have a small sizzors available.

One unwitting mother of a jr high student paid her hard earned money for one of these professional manicurist to put longer nails on her child’s hands as a birthday gift. Since the nail was chemically attached to the finger with something like super glue I sent the child home with out a lesson. No problems every since.

I’m going to talk to one of my Jr. College students who pays his bills as a manicurist and ask him to concider specializing in children and doing a workshop for our parents. I wouldn’t mind if child hand care became a fad for a while. Parents pay a dentist to care for their child’s teeth and educate them on juvenal dental care. There are some tricks to hand care that might make parenting a little easier. IF they need it they should be able to consult a specialist on caring for a grooming a child’s hands.

Parents need to understand that just like eyes and ears which need a doctors care the hands are important routes of sensory information to the brain and need some attention. Just like brushing teeth everyday and eating your vegetables children need motivation to care for their hands. Successful parents have found a way to make it fun and not a chore or one more argument at home.

Ms. Cynthia
Studio:
Talent Education Center: Suzuki Violin
Director of Santa Ana Suzuki Strings located at the
Orange County Children’s Therapeutic Arts Center
Volunteer, bring music to under-served communities around the world. Create Sound Investments and Futures.

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