What benefits have you seen?

said: May 2, 2007
 21 posts

I’ve seen some pretty dramatic changes in my children since they started music lessons. Please share changes you’ve seen in your child.

My 9 year old daughter was so shy in kindergarten that she would not even say hello to her teacher. She would turn her head away when being introduced to a new person. This year, she has played a violin solo in front of her entire elementary school, then again, in front of our church congregation of 150. Afterwards, she looked people in the eye and thanked them for the compliments.

This same child was an average student, getting mostlly B’s and some C’s. After 9 months of violin and piano, she is a straight A student. Her overall confidence has soared.

My 6 year old daughter is a different personality. She has always had more than enough confidence and people skills. She tends towards distractibility though. On her first kindergarten report card, before music lessons, her teacher reported that she was having trouble paying attention and seemed to be forgetting simple directions. I noticed this in her first few music lessons as well. Now after 9 months of piano, and 2 months of violin, her teacher has only positive things to say about this child. She suddenly learned to read and is excelling in math.

I am a big fan of Suzuki!

Laura said: May 3, 2007
Suzuki Association Member
358 posts

i’ve noticed that my daughter (still in preschool)’s Suzuki experience has taught her to notice good quality in just about anything, and to persevere towards doing something correctly or properly. It’s funny how much she can resist over the picky points of violin practice, but the same focus and work skills have very naturally begun to transfer into other activities that she does.

I compare this to some of her preschool peers, who are involved in many “fun” activities that remain just that: lots of fun input, with relatively little output. These children don’t value their own efforts (my daughter has told stories of some of them literally destroying their week-long art projects in preschool, whereas she was very proud of hers after how much it took to complete). They also find it hard (or even worse, they find it pointless) to focus on things that are anything less than fully entertaining.

My daughter, for her young age, also has something to be very proud of that she deserves to be proud of. Instead of her self-esteem coming from whatever latest Barbie she owns, she can play her violin pieces reasonably well (to a Suzuki “insider”) to downright impressively (to an unknowing friend or relative who she happens to be willing to play for). She has experienced, time and again, how something that seemed impossible one day or week suddenly is hailed as victorious the next day or week. She knows when she’s playing well or not, and will often even stop now to correct herself before teacher or parent steps in. All of this registers with her: that her hard work is valued and appreciated, not just by herself but by others.

A lot of this is parenting, I realize—it’s not Suzuki which is the main difference here. But parenting is such a huge component of Suzuki, and we Suzuki parents are forced to find how to lead our children through a highly advanced learning process. So it’s not a big surprise to me that where Suzuki is successful, one will also see side benefits in other aspects of a child’s life.

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