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If your child gets sulky or bored of their Suzuki music lessons, or you start throwing parent tantrums, then read this wonderful book to reconnect with WHY you both started Suzuki lessons in the first place. I LOVE the idea of music as a non-negotiable, but also to remember to progress practice at the child's pace. Forget about mommy or daddy drive. The child has their own world vision and this book reminds us to seek that out and to encourage the child to set the pace and for both to remember the joy of music for life & not just for progress into the next level piece or violin book. A wise and fun read. Couldn't put it down.
Christine Goodner’s Beyond the Music Lesson is a well-thought out resource written for Suzuki parents and teachers alike. My favorite thing about this book is that it so clearly lays out the expectations necessary to succeed on the Suzuki Journey. Christine reminds the reader of the big picture, as well as the steps needed to get there! The meat and potatoes of the book largely focuses on mindset, which is the biggest reason I recommend it.
My take on it is this: Success comes when parents have a full understanding of the amount of effort it will take to do the work and tailor that work to their child’s individual needs. Success comes when the gift of music and a strong bond with your child is born out of the hard work you put in together. When parents start with this expectation at the very beginning, they are capable of navigating with clearer vision and more realistic goals and expectations of what can be accomplished together. Beyond the Music Lesson helps the adults in the Suzuki Triangle to do this.
Christine brings a wonderful, genuine perspective to the table, from the vantage point of a Suzuki teacher, parent, and student. You can feel her understanding of today’s Suzuki challenges in her delivery; She validates and encourages parents by acknowledging their very real experiences and struggles while also sharing her candid teacher and student perspective.
She also doesn’t waste anyone’s time, which is great, since we’re all busy! Her points are honest, positive, concise, and practical. She offers many digestible guiding questions and tidbits along the way that are thought-provoking and doable.
Thanks to Christine for sending us an advance e-reader copy to give feedback before the book launched. Right after reading, we ordered a physical copy to keep here for our studio parents, and we look forward to using it as a reference in our teaching for years to come.
This is going to be mandatory reading for all my violin parents this fall. As a teacher, there are MANY things that you sometimes want to tell parents perhaps a bit too bluntly; here they are stated elegantly and with supporting material. I highlighted so much I finally had to start with a second color for the really REALLY important points.
Note: I am not a "Suzuki teacher" in the very strictest sense (though I took the classes)--as far as I can tell, the "Suzuki method" is essentially extremely good child psychology, neuroscience, and common sense, which have their place no matter what books you happen to teach from. Same with the powerful ideas in this book--they transcend any stated "method." This book will be useful to ANY "music parent." (I definitely would have had a happier childhood if it had been around for my parents!!)
One last thing--I very much appreciate that the Kindle edition costs only $5. A number of my students are relatively low-income, and I've always hesitated to ask parents to read a $20-25 book, though there are some good ones out there; it can be a daunting amount of money for some. This makes it much more accessible, and was easier on MY musician-sized wallet as well! I hope the cost stays that low.
Great book! Written in a friendly, easy to understand style. Perfect for Suzuki parents who want to provide a great musical environment for their child. Great information for teachers as well. The personal stories really connect you with the author and her experiences as a Suzuki student, teacher and parent. Information is backed up by research and there is a source list for additional reading at the end of the book if you are interested in delving deeper into the subject. Chapters and sections are well labeled, so that you can quickly refer back to a topic you want to re-read, making this an excellent reference book to keep on your shelf. This format is also helpful if there's not time to read a whole book. Just choose one topic or chapter and read a few pages. There's something of value for everyone in this book!
I ordered this book not knowing much about the Suzuki method. It was fascinating to learn about it and notice its possible application in other areas besides music. Children who are taught with Suzuki method develop commitment and discipline. The emphasis on daily practice develops their grit.
There are many advantages of adapting the Suzuki method. Suzuki children grow up ready to take on any project or job and stick with it having the long term goal in mind. They seem not to be driven by the goal but by the process itself.
Grab Beyond the Music Lesson to discover and get inspired by the words of Christine Goodner, a Suzuki mom herself.
Loved this book! As a newer Suzuki Cello Teacher it provided a lot of insight into how I can better assist my parents in home practice. The author, Christine provides great insight as a veteran Suzuki Violin teacher and Suzuki parent into some of the common woes and road blocks to practice. I also enjoyed that this is a modern view since a lot of the other Suzuki supplementary readings are quite out dated (the American family dynamic has changed so much).
I would recommend any Suzuki educator or parent have this book on their shelf. An accessible read it was enjoyable while still be full of great ideas.
I also feel that this book moves beyond just working with music but raising kids in general. Looking into success and how to achieve goals!
Lastly, I just love the cover artwork and font throughout the book!
I’m not done reading the entire book, but it has been extremely helpful for practicing with my 4 year old. I was reminded that it’s not what you do that particilar day to practice, but that we practiced and I got to spend one-on-one time with my child. It reminded me that learning to play the violin will teach my child valuable life lessons and that it what is most important. The book is comforting because now I know that we are not the only family that often has a tough time getting practice started for the day and the resistance many kids will have to doing something that is challenging. I highly recommend this book if you are just starting the music lesson path.
I was very excited to receive this book that I had heard so much about! It lived up to its reputation. I loved the clear, practical suggestions, the personal anecdotes, and especially the input from various other teachers and parents. As a newish violin teacher I found the ideas helpful and will be encouraging my families to read it. As another reviewer mentioned, it was refreshing to read a more 'up-to-date' book, as many of the Suzuki texts are now woefully out of date, for family circumstances and use of listening devices etc. If you're a teacher looking for parent education tips, a parent looking for a realistic view of what you're getting yourself in for (or how to do it better!), or even a student yourself, this is a great book to read!