Studio Policies

Effective September 1, 2021, the Studio membership dues will be as follows:

  • Pre-Twinkle, Suzuki Book 1-2 students = $110 
  • Suzuki Book 2-5 students = $160
  • Suzuki Book 6+ students = $200

The Studio membership dues will increase every ‘odd’ year.

The next increase will be September 1, 2023

Membership is divided into 12 equal payments for three semesters of lessons (Fall, Spring, Summer).

Membership is due on or before the 5th of each month via Venmo, amynorton3.

Studio membership includes:

  • 42 Private Lessons  
    • Fall Semester: September-December: 14 lessons
    • Spring Semester: January-April: 14 lessons
    • Summer Semester: May-August: 14 lessons
  • 8 Group Lessons 
    • Fall Semester: 4 group lessons 
    • Spring Semester: 4 group lessons
  • Spring Studio Party 
  • Individual Solo Book Recitals & rehearsals as needed
  • Studio Solo & Group Recital expenses, Accompanist, Venue 
  • Extra rehearsals as needed
  • Parent-Teacher phone conference
  • Studio supplies & awards
  • Administrative work

Studio Attendance

  • Please be respectful of my personal time and/or other student’s time before & after your lessons. 
  • Group lesson attendance is expected.  Group lessons (once/month during the Fall and Spring semesters) will be Saturday mornings.  Schedule TBD.
  • With a Studio membership, punctual attendance to all scheduled lessons & rehearsals is expected & appreciated.
  • If you arrive late, you will not receive a full lesson.
  • If a schedule conflict occurs, you are expected to communicate with me in advance.  You may request a trade with another student (private lessons are only on Tuesday & Thursday during 2021-2022 Fall & Spring Semesters) or forfeit your lesson.  
  • If for any reason you are unable to continue during the full year of lessons, your spot in the studio will be forfeited.   

No Lessons during the following weeks:

Fall Semester

  • Thanksgiving Break (1 week), November 22-26, 2021
  • Holiday Break (2 weeks), December 20-31, 2021

Spring Semester

  • Winter Break (1 week), January 31-February 4, 2022
  • Spring Break (2 *separate* weeks), April 4-8 & April 25-29, 2022

Summer Semester

  • Summer Break (3 weeks), TBA Summer 2022

Expectations

  • Aligning with the Suzuki teacher-student-parent triangle, I value and appreciate parents attending weekly private lessons with their child!  Please be prepared to pay attention and understand the techniques being introduced. Lessons flow better if the practicing parent is able to scribe or video assignments during each lesson. 
  • Please understand that the violin studio is intended to create an optimal learning environment.  Please avoid bringing any noisy distractions to lessons that could directly affect the student’s ability to stay focused on their lesson.  This includes; food, cell phones, siblings and toys. If siblings must come, invite them to bring a book or coloring pages. If any of these distractions prevent a positive learning atmosphere, please be sensitive to this.
  • I expect students to practice 5-7 days/week.  Home practice should be done with student & parent working together to create a positive environment where the beauty of music and mastery of skills can flourish!  Remember, practice makes it easy! Please scroll down for information on how to practice at home.

How To Prepare For Private Lessons

  • Please use a blank “WHAT/HOW” practice chart each lesson to write down practice expectations.
  • Remember to gather your supplies at home prior to your lesson!  Bring your Suzuki Method Books, Lesson Binder, Technique Books (i.e. scales) & other assigned music and/or foot chart.
  • Please arrive BEFORE  your lessons time begins to unpack your instrument & music.  
  • Students should always carry their own instrument & book bag, not the parent, please.
  • Parents & students, be prepared to verbally communicate with me as well as through your music!  Questions you have (parent & teacher) are always welcome! Parents, if you need to address sensitive concerns, please do so in an email.
  • Parents, please have a 3-ring binder for weekly practice charts from our lesson, hand-outs and to keep the paper trail under control!  You can toss practice charts after a month, or so.

Please click HERE to download & print your own weekly practice chart.  There are also copies available in the studio each week. 

How To Prepare For Group Lessons

  • Group Lessons are part of the Suzuki Curriculum.  If you are not able to attend group lessons, please communicate this with me.    Come prepared to enjoy playing and working together with what you’re learning at home!  Parents are not required to attend group lessons. 

Group Lessons are 45 minutes and are held once/month.

How To Practice At Home

Book 1 Students=15-30 Minutes per day of practice

Book 2 Students=30-40 Minutes per day of practice

Book 3 Students=30-40 Minutes per day of practice

Book 4 Students=45-60 Minutes per day of practice

Book 5 Students=45-60 Minutes per day of practice

Book 6-10: Students=60+ Minutes per day of practice

“Knowledge + 10,000 = Skill!” -Dr. Suzuki

“Practice makes it EASY!” -Ms. Amy

Knowledge is gained during our lessons together.  Skill is developed by repeating that knowledge carefully at home, improving with each repetition, until it becomes easy!  

  • When will you practice?  If you make time for practice every day, it will make it much easier!  Set aside practice time as you would for a doctor’s appointment to avoid conflicts!  
  • Find a good “practice zone” in your home.  Somewhere where good tone can be developed, you have adequate lighting to read music, distractions are minimal, and the instrument is safe.  Decide with your family whether or not keeping the instrument packed away or readily available is the best setup between practice sessions. Wall-mounted hooks are available for violins.
  • Purchase a music stand when you begin Suzuki Book 2, or otherwise suggested.  Ask me for recommendations.
  • Purchase a Metronome/Tuner Combination.  Phone apps are good, but the “real thing” is better!
  • Establish how you will listen to SUZUKI MUSIC at home.  MP3 player with headphones? CD player? Using car audio?
  • Purchase a spare set of 4 strings for your sized instrument.  Ask me for details.
  • Always begin practicing with a scale played slowly, paying attention to beautiful tone, intonation, and smooth note changes.  
  • Spend time reviewing, learning, polishing or previewing parts of your pieces, or memorizing sections of assigned pieces.  Never play something only once (unless you are on the stage performing it!). Always learn from your sound and play again, with a better purpose!
  • Reviewing prior polished pieces and listening to the Suzuki repertoire is essential for proper technique and ear training.  Remember, this is the “mother-tongue” method patterned how infants learn their native languages by listening! 
  • Ideas for what to think about & improve while you are practicing:
    • Posture points: Nose-Scroll-Elbow-Toe-Slippery Slide-Bow Hold
    • Soft monkey knees, tall back, and firm feet
    • Names of the notes, especially during scales and arpeggios
    • Subdivide the rhythm
    • Breathing to enhance your sound
    • Beautiful tone, especially paying attention to “peaks & valleys” in the melody
    • Continuously curved Left-hand fingers
    • Continuous Right-arm weight applied to the horsehair against the string
    • Practice slowly to improve intonation and hear your violin ring as you play
    • Learn using pizzicato-style to focus on Left-hand when needed
    • Always repeat and reverse shifts, ensuring accuracy and proper motion
    • Use a metronome at moderate speeds when assignments begin to feel easy
    • Use practice rhythms & reverse scale passages: ribets and gallops, groups of 3, 5, 9, 13, going forward and reverse.

House Rules

Please use common courtesy & good manners while in my home and property.   A bathroom is available for emergencies.  Please do not make it a common habit to take lesson time for restroom visits.