Well, only a few students showed up this morning to Group Class, but it was fantastic. Group class is so important for Suzuki Method! The children learn so much from each other. And it is extremely motivating. Group class is the only thing that I remember about the violin from age five to age ten!
Well, I must admit that I had absolutely no lesson plan other than to spend some time going over the new Christmas Music with them this morning. Sometimes it is best if I don’t have too many plans because my silly designs can get in the way of the spirit of the group.
We started with a Trio of French Folk Song that I rearranged from an arrangement made by Stuart, my friend in Japan. It was quite beautiful and fit with the piano accompaniment nicely. I am very happy with it. But the kids were bored (so maybe the arrangement isn’t that good after all)…
As more students started to appear in my living room, we started playing things like Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer (complete with tremolo and pizzicato). They liked that one better.
And then some interesting things began to happen. The class took on a life of its own. The students had their own ideas about what to play next and their ideas were good. I decided to go with the flow. “Let’s play Devil’s Dream!” said Issy! And so we played it and it was great! Fiddle tunes are always a crowd pleaser. Then I said something about playing October Song and the pianist just started to play May Song in A Minor… then the group joined in. It was awesome and spooky!
When we moved to more difficult songs, one of the Fathers started playing with us on his daughter’s violin. He was playing quite well so I asked him to come and stand with the group. And one of the baby brothers was singing with us! (Lah la lah… little baby brother… singing in tune!) It is so amazing to think of how well that small baby will be playing the violin in six or seven years.
The Allegro duet of Issy and Abri went fantastically well! And it was their first try! I’m so excited for Abri’s graduation recital on Oct. 30th. Costumes are obilgatory of course and I’d better start thinking about mine (what to be, what to be?).
Ah – what a lovely group class! When even more students can attend in a few weeks I hope it will be even better. I have faith in Suzuki Method and the spirit of the group!