Frequently Asked Questions
How old should my child be to start violin lessons in Amanda Kerr's Suzuki Violin & Fiddle Studio?
Amanda offers classes to children as young as age 3, and starts offering private lessons around age 5. The Twinkle Tots classes work families towards being ready to start a consistent private lesson, daily listening, and practice routine. The first step being to stand in a calm and steady "rest position" and taking a bow. Amanda believes children are born with the ability to learn music and that there is no bad age to start! For families of toddlers and babies that are maybe a bit too young to start Twinkle Tots, you might look into doing "Suzuki Early Childhood Education" (aka SECE) classes. Although Amanda does not teach this class (yet!) Amanda's own children (ages 1 & 3) take this class from the wonderful Karyn-Grove Bruce, and even offers a tuition discount to families who have graduated from this course.
Do parents need to participate in lessons?
Yes! In addition to parents being in control of any behavioral things that may arise, it is also a part of what makes Suzuki Method work so well. In Suzuki Method, parents need to stay attentive in both lessons and practice at home. At the end of every lesson they should know what their child's goals are, and what they should be doing at home to achieve them.
Does my child have to participate in both private and group lessons?
Yes! Regular private AND group classes are mandatory and are equally an essential part of your child's development as a musician.
My scheduled group class doesn't fit into my schedule. What can I do to make the class up?
This year, each student is encouraged to try to participate in 2-3 group classes per month. All classes are also recorded and uploaded to the portal, so if you miss a class you can view the recording and practice all the activities at home on your own time.
How long is a private lesson?
Private lessons are usually scheduled for 45 minutes. (Exceptions are sometimes made for siblings, or toddler-aged students with shorter attention-spans.) Please note lessons are not timed down to the minute. We may end a few minutes early if I feel the student has reached maximum mental capacity.
A family member is sick/ The weather is too bad for me to come to my lesson...
Please don't bring a sick child to lessons. Skype or FaceTime lessons can be arranged in cases of sickness (obviously assuming your child is well enough to still play their instrument), or if the road conditions are too rough to get to your lesson. Please try to let Amanda know by noon that day if you would like to Skype so she can get set up in advance. If online lessons can not be arranged, you may make up the lesson at the next Master Class or Amanda can help you arrange a make up lesson if time is available. As a last resort, Amanda may send you a practice video that she makes during your lesson time along with a list of things to practice.
What is the policy for missed lessons?
Missed lessons cannot be reimbursed, but can be made up if time is available. Amanda can also make you a practice video during your missed lesson. It is the parent's responsibility to contact Amanda about rescheduling a missed lesson. With limited lesson spots, I can't guarantee there will be time to reschedule, so it is extra important to give lots of advanced notice if you would like to to cancel or reschedule a lesson.
Can adults take lessons?
Yes! You are never too old to start violin lessons. Unfortunately, Amanda does not have a group class option for adults (yet), but as long is there is space in the schedule, she will always be willing to do private lessons for adults. Just know that adults will be expected to commit to a regular lesson and practice schedule the same as everyone else ;)