The role of group classes within the Suzuki approach is vital for a family's success. Weekly (or as available) attendance is required in concurrence with the weekly private lesson. Here are some listed benefits of group:
Motivation - when children see older students playing at more advanced levels, it gives the young ones something to aspire to in the long-term and inspires them to keep trying and practicing. It also gives students something fun to look forward to every week! Likewise, older students become role models to the less advanced students, and feel a sense of accomplishment for coming so far in their musical journey.
Engaging with Peers - the social aspect of music is so important, and it's great for a child, especially a young child, to see that there are others as young as they are that are learning Suzuki violin as well. It also helps to prepare them for playing in chamber and orchestra settings. For parents, group class is great place to meet other Suzuki parents. They get to chat with each other, ask questions, offer support, and share general joys and challenges of the Suzuki journey.
Musical Development - students are exposed to so many invaluable things for growing musicians to have. Skills such as matching bow strokes, tone, dynamics, vibrato, intonation, musicality, following a leader (conductor), are often observed in group classes before it is introduced in a private lesson.
Reinforcement for the Private Lesson - the learning process is strengthened by the child (and parent!) experiencing the same techniques being taught in different ways by different Suzuki teachers.
Where To Go?
Students in the Neff Violin Studio attend bi-monthly studio group classes at the home studio in Central Phoenix, as well as the Valley of the Sun Suzuki Association group classes, held at the Center for Educational Excellence in Tempe. Here are links to more information for these group classes: