Hi there, I am a grandpa, and I have five-year experience of accompanying my son to learn the violin. Here are some tips I‘d like to share with other violin parents who have no musical background like me and hope they are helpful.
- It is better for children to start the violin lessons sooner than later.
Many violinists began to learn musical instrument when they were very young. For example, Tchaikovsky started piano lessons at age five, and Mahler took piano lessons at four. Some parents with musical background begin to create a musical atmosphere at home when their kids are only three. I believe when children are able to concentrate, their musical interests can be cultivated, and learning an instrument at a young age makes sense for their future development.
- Understanding the difference between group lessons and private lessons is important.
When children start their first violin lessons, they are better able to build their violin interests by joining in group lessons although private lessons are better for children’s violin learning results. Of course parents can hire professional and responsible tutors to guide children’s violin performance, but they should notice investing in children’s private violin lessons requires a huge amount of money.
- Violy is a good violin app that can help parents know how kids’ violin performance is.
I was introduced to Violy by my son’s violin teacher Zhang, and I surprisingly found that this app can help parent without musical background like me know how’s the violin performance of my kid. Thus, I encourage my son to try his best to achieve 90 points without wrong sound when he was practicing. I think when my son achieved more than 90 points, he got the sense of achievement and he got stronger incentives to practice more frequently.
- Keeping good learning attitude is the key in kids’ violin training.
Any musical instrument learning requires persistence, so developing a good learning attitude is essential for children. I have accompanied my son to learn the violin for five years and we haven’t missed any class, regardless of the hot weather or the snowy wind. Parents’ persistence and accompaniment at children’s young age determine whether children can insist on practicing the violin. If necessary, parents could make some notes, record videos and communicate with teachers to help children learn the violin. Don’t play mobile phones or do other things when watching children practicing the violin; otherwise, these young beginners would consider it not important. Also, if parents have time, they should learn some relevant knowledge to better guide children’s practice.
- Paying attention to adjust children’s posture when they are playing the violins.
Parents should attach importance to children’s violin playing posture since this is a long-term effective skill that would influence children’s violin performance. After one year of violin class for the enlightenment, my son transferred to teacher Zhang and Mr. Zhang spent a lot of time to correct my son’s posture, for example, the position and the shape of left thumb and how to hold the bow with right hand. Once the habit of posture is formed, it is not easy to change; so parents need to correct children’s violin playing posture.
- Don’t forget to develop children’s practice habits.
After my son began to primary school, he has to complete the school work and practice the violin. Although his daily schedule is very busy, he practices the violin for at least two hours every day. Generally, he practices the violin for half an hour before he goes to school every morning and two hours before bed. Therefore, with two hours’ violin lessons a week, my son practices the violin more than sixteen hours a week.
- Encouraging children to participate in exams and group performances is a good way to cultivate children’s sense of accomplishment.
Children don’t want to take exams or group performances because of the stress, but exams should be considered as a test and also an incentive. My son started to participate in many international and domestic violin competitions from elementary school; he did so not for the prize or the honor, but for better understanding of his shortcomings of violin performance and making friends with other violin kids.
After all, it makes me super happy to be able to spend time with me grandchildren. Music sounded, happiness flow to the face indeed. Hopefully my experience could help you.