Teaching the Violin and Viola: Creating a Healthy Foundation

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  • Beginning Stages
    • Welcome to Teaching the Violin and Viola: Creating a Healthy Foundation! We will begin by covering leading philosophies and pedagogical theories about teaching children the violin and viola. The beginning stages will cover the child’s setup, posture and first left hand techniques.
  • Bow Arm and Hand
    • To introduce the use of the right hand, we start by creating a “pinky house” for the child’s bow. We delve further into the violin setup and positioning through various creative exercises.
  • Putting It All Together
    • Now we get to put it all together by slowly incorporating the different movements of the right and left hand through four different pieces.
  • Pieces in the Key of A Major
    • After good setup and posture have been established, we start teaching the fundamentals through elementary pieces in the key of A Major. We also get to learn our first scale!
  • Playing with the Whole Bow
    • To transition to using the full bow, we introduce the “adult “ bow hold and a series of exercises to extend the bow stroke. Pieces include Long, Long Ago, O Come, Little Children, and Butterfly, Flutterby.
  • Pieces in the Key of D Major
    • We can now introduce the key of D Major. Students learn the D major scale along with pieces such as Bach Musette and Hushabye Lullaby.
  • Pieces in the Key of G Major
    • When we progress to the G Major scale and arpeggio, we start adding etudes and more advanced technical concepts. Pieces covered include Minuet and Happy Farmer.
  • Note Reading, Vibrato, and the Group Class
    • To teach note reading, we will cover the best-practice teaching techniques for note reading and vibrato. We will also explore group teaching, group games, and group dynamics.
  • Favorite Exercises for the Older Student
    • Now that our students are getting more advanced, we can begin to cover our favorite exercises for the older student. Exercises include "Poof Bow" and the "Invisible Violin."
  • The Master Class
    • In our final segment, we will learn from top pedagogues Mimi Zweig and Roland and Almita Vamos in a master class setting.

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