About the Suzuki Method

Alison Tatum is certified in Books 1-4. Her teacher trainers were Rolando Freitag (Books 1, 3, and 4) and Edward Kreitman (Book 2).


The goals of the Suzuki Method are to enrich the lives of children by playing a musical instrument, and to give each child the satisfaction that comes from the ability to do something well. The Suzuki Method offers much more than a private music lesson. It encompasses a philosophy of education that applies to many aspects of a child’s developments such as discipline, memory, focus, self-esteem, and confidence.


The curriculum of the Suzuki Method has been carefully developed to ensure that the child will be successful at every step in his or her musical education. Each method book contains a sequence of repertoire that becomes progressively more advanced. Familiar pieces are continuously reviewed, ensuring mastery of skills and techniques. The accompanying recording should be listened to daily in order for the student to learn the pieces and to develop a sense of the beautiful sound his or her instrument should be producing. The child and parent will attend a weekly private lesson with a trained instructor as well as a regularly scheduled group class (if available).

How to Make Progress

Progress is made from skill to skill in carefully structured lessons using a “one step at a time” approach. From the beginning, emphasis is given to excellent posture, fine intonation, polished technique, and the production of beautiful tone. The brain imprints deepest those messages it first receives. Though it takes concerted time and effort, it is best to implant skills carefully and correctly at the onset. Those beginning understandings and techniques- the “first impressions” – are critical in shaping the success of the Suzuki experience.  Excellent progress of Suzuki students is most easily and quickly accomplished when the parent establishes a consistent daily routine. This routine should include home practicing, maintaining review pieces, and listening to the Suzuki repertoire CD in a positive, no-fail learning atmosphere at home.

Parent Involvement

The success of the Suzuki Method depends upon the cooperation and participation of the parent as well as the student. The Suzuki parent is actively involved in the learning process. The parent attends all lessons and takes notes, supervises listening, and practices with the student each day, making sure the student does exactly as the teacher instructed. The parent is the “home teacher,” giving praise for each effort, so that practice time is a positive experience. Being a successful Suzuki parent does not depend on any previous knowledge of music. The parent is taught step by step how to help the child at home.

Music Reading

Just as we teach children to read a language only after they can speak, music reading should be postponed until the child’s aural and instrumental skills are well established. Music reading will then be introduced as a natural outgrowth of what the child already knows.

For more information, visit https://suzukiassociation.org

The Suzuki Method is a specialized method of developing learning ability in very young children. Based on the principles of Dr. Shinichi Suzuki of Japan, Suzuki teachers believe that all children can develop fine musical talents the same way they learn to speak: by listening and imitating in what’s known as the “mother-tongue” approach. All children learn to speak by imitating the language they hear in their daily environment. The parents repeat simple words for their baby and provide encouragement as their child successfully imitates the sounds. Such is the case with music. If the child hears an instrument played beautifully and is encouraged by his or her parents and teacher in a nurturing environment, he or she can learn to play.  The music becomes the medium for cultivating human character, ability, and heart.