This Fall I have been enjoying
teaching fiddle lessons
more than ever - I currently have 18 students and they are all wonderful and unique! My students range in age from 8 years old to 65+, so there is never a dull moment.
Since I have been teaching for over two years now, I finally feel like I am developing my own style and theories that go with learning the violin. My favorite idea so far is called "Brain Overload Theory" - the violin is really complicated and there are many moving parts (bow, fingers, sheet music, etc) and at some point most beginning fiddlers' brains just kind of short-circuit. That's why, to prevent Brain Overload, I break the fiddle into several components. We focus on bowing separately from fingering, etc. This helps the student be successful in one area at a time and later they can combine all their new skills with more confidence. At least that's my method - I am sure there are many ways to approach teaching an instrument!
You truly never stop learning, and teaching the violin has been a great education for me as well. Most importantly, I've learned that people have many different reasons for pursuing music, and they are all valid. Some students want
to perform on stage, some just want to scratch out tunes around a campfire, some do it to keep the brain young, some simply love the sound of the violin, and some do it to earn stickers and candy! :) My aim is to facilitate learning at whatever pace is necessary, so that my students can keep music as a part of their lives forever.
Regardless of their reasons for playing, it has been a joy to work with my students; I am so proud of each of them. We will be having a Holiday Recital in December, and you're invited to see the fruits of all their labor... I'll be sure to keep you posted on the details in the next Newsletter!