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# 8 Practice Tips and Ideas for Parents

Book Reviews by Susan Hall

Donald Plays Violin by Karen Patch (a violin teacher and illustrated by Randy Wicks

Donald decides he wants to learn to play the violin after attending this cousin's music class and hearing her play a solo on her instrument.  After his second lesson he went to a music store with his mother and father to get a violin.  His teacher says practice, practice, practice, every day, but poor Donald has a terrible time deciding which room at home to use for his practicing.  The kitchen is too noisy, his sister wants to take a bath in the bathroom, and his brother is playing with friends in the room they share.  Children will love the cartoon like illustrations and seeing how Donald solved his problem.

I Can Play My Violin Just As Well As Jeremy Can!-The Suzuki Way by Margaret Keith (a Suzuki violin teacher) and illustrated by Albin Zotigh

Laura, who is five years old, aspires to play her violin as well as Jeremy her best fired does.  Laura is in Book 1 and Jeremy is in Book 2.  Jeremy assures he is not to worry about how many pieces she can play or what book she's in, since eventually she'll play all the pieces he does anyway.  Practicing only on the days you eat is stressed, as well as handling some negative feelings towards practice and working through these "normal highs and lows" of learning an instrument.

One day Laura left her violin, just for a minute, in her dad's favorite chair.  He nearly sat on it.  He dropped his book and glass of iced tea.  He nearly sat on the floor when Laura yelled, "Don't sit there!"

Jeremy talks about setting "short goals" for himself when he learns a new piece.  Laura learns to "open the doors to success " the Suzuki way,”  through her parents, listening, practicing, reviewing, tonalizing, and faithfully attending group lessons and recitals.

These books are available from our Suzuki Lending Library.

The following list of recordings was provided by Margaret Haviland, a viola teacher formerly with the UNI Suzuki School.  For additional listening information, please talk with your teacher.  She /he will be able to provide you with additional lists.

Chamber and Orchestra Music

  • Brahms: Viola Quintet (1)
  • Debussy: Trio for flute, harp and viola
  • Dvorak: The American String Quartet and Viola Quintet (1)
  • Mozart:  Viola Quintet (6)
  • Tchaikovsky:  Souvenir de Florence; string sextet
  • Symphonies and Orchestra Works
  • JS Bach:  Brandenburg Concertos:  #3, #4, #5, #6
  • Samuel Barber: Adagio for Strings
  • Bartok: Rumanian Dances for String Orchestra and Concerto for Orchestra
  • Beethoven:  Symphonies 1 - 9
  • Brahms: Symphonies 1 - 4 and Serenades , 7, 2,
  • Dvorak:  The New World Symphony
  • Elgar:  Enigma Variations and Serenade for Strings
  • Greig: Holberg Suite
  • Haryjanos:  Kodaly
  • Holtz: The Planets
  • Mahler: 4th Symphony
  • Mendelssohn: Italian Symphony, Reformation Symphony and Scottish Symphony
  • Mozart: Symphonies #36, #38, #39, #40, #41
  • Rossini Overtures: William Tell and The Barber of Seville
  • Tchaikovsky:  1812 Overture, Symphonies #4, #5, #6 and Serenade for Strings

UNI Suzuki School publication, Issue #2,  Dec.1987# 8 Practice Tips and Ideas for Parents