downGot 2 Twinkle  

downPreTwinkle Violin Classes at TEC  

Your child was born with sensitive ears, and a delicate sense of balance.

Your child is a responsive musical instrument with a beautiful heart.

You want to nurture their musical sensibilities

in an environment that inspires their sense of wonder.

-- Ms. Cynthia

Playing the Violin offers your child an extraordinary opportunity to increase these very sensibilities.   Not only is the auditory nerve stimulated to develop temporal concepts but the vestibular system is also organized to a fine degree.   The vestibular system provides a violinist with a sense of balance.    Balance is required of the body to hold the violin as well as to balance the bow on the strings to obtain a beautiful tone.   Additionally the fingers must balance on the finger board in order to play with sensitive tone and accurate intonation.   By developing his/er intuitive musical abilities form a young age, violin study enhances the "Spatial Reasoning Ability" of your child through balance and a well developed ear.

The PreTwinkle classes at TEC are designed by Ms. Cynthia to develop those sensibilities of your child from the inside out.   As you begin to acquire a better understanding of this process we  hope you will also read Listening for Success and  make a copy of Get Ready, Set, Go!: A check list for busy parents with beginning students.      If you are unfamiliar with the Suzuki Method you can get more general information at the Suzuki Association   site from these pages:  The Suzuki Twinkler


What are children ages 3 & 4 doing in a Violin Class?

The PreTwinkle classes are designed to meet not only the musical needs but also the social and developmental needs the of the child who is 3-4 years of age.   The weekly 30min. classes must have at least 2  and not more than 4 children.   Everyone dresses comfortably because these are very active classes for both parent and child.   Ms. Cynthia likes to incorporate some of her favorite Kindermusik activities between Suzuki activities.   Everyone is very busy learning with their ears and their bodies as you will soon see.


 Parents Participate

Parents participate and learn at least as much as the children.     Parents are an important ingredient in the PreTwinkle class.   They are always there to take notes, give the child support and learn practice skills that they will need to be the child's helper at home.   They are the environmental engineers of the child's musical experience in the home.   They assist the child by finding times and places for listening and practicing in the child's daily life.   They also look for experiences that will provide children with inspiration for practicing.    Ms. Cynthia spends as much time in the PreTwinkle class teaching 'Musical Parenting' to adults as she does teaching violin to the children.   All PreTwinkle Parents are required to read They're Rarely to Young and Never Too Old "To Twinkle!"  by Kay Slone.   This is a manual for parents and teachers raising PreTwinkler violin students that much of Ms. Cynthia's teaching is based on.


Parents can Study Violin too 

If you are the parent of a child under the age of three you have the opportunity to get a head start on the violin before your child begins his/er own lessons.   Many Suzuki parents in America have discovered the easiest way to keep children motivated  about practicing,  is to take private violin lessons themselves.   The young child always wants to do what he sees the parents doing.   Later as children continue study they appreciate having an advocate who understands the process of their musical efforts.   It is not necessary to become an expert musician as long as you enjoy the experience and communicate that with your child.


Listening is Magic

The secret to success in the PreTwinkle Class is listening.   All of the children listen to the Suzuki Violin CD.   In the PreTwinkle class children learn 4 rhythmic variations that provide them with the skills they will need to learn all of the music in Book I.   Parents are asked to play each track with the single repeat button softly in the background as if it were the carpet or the wall paper in their environment.   In this way when children come to class they are already familiar with each of the Twinkles and prepared to play the games and activities in the class.   Find out how you can Listen for Success when you get your Suzuki CD.   We suspect that listening to music can influence the development of motor coordination in the young child.


Movement and Balance


Children learn about their world by moving in it.   In the PreTwinkle class we continue moving to the music and leaning about our bodies.    Children learn to name fingers, arms and feet.   We dance and jump on our foot charts.   We begin tapping our twinkle rhythms and finding our Thumbs.   You will see PT Photos of children with balls because we are using our whole body to learn the up and down motion of our bows.   We learn to move and be still until we can hold the box violin with an eraser for a twinkle.   We teach our fingers how to hold a pencil bow and balance a lifesaver on it.   When we can slide the Twinkles on our arm with the music Ms. Cynthia knows we are ready to hold our bows and bow on our shoulders.   Through many games and listening activities they learn to prepare their ears and their bodies for the exciting day they will be able hold the instrument and move the bow.    By the time the child can hold both the bow and the violin together we continue to honor the needs of the child to move.   

Many important things have happened deep inside the child in the course of a semester of PreTwinkle classes.   Modern research is just beginning to help us understand some of the processes in the human nervous system that allow us to play a musical instrument.   The fact that a young child can develop these abilities is still quite remarkable.   The secret to our success at TEC is to teach from the child's inner sense of balance.


Group Lessons and Observation

For PreTwinklers 2-4 children in a weekly lesson is considered their private lesson.   All PreTwinklers are invited to attend Group lessons for the whole studio of beginners on Saturday afternoons.    This is an opportunity for your box violin child to see 'Twinkles' who are bowing on their violins and possibly doing fingers.    PreTwinklers will be invited to participate in beginning activities.   Currently PreTwinklers  have their PreTwinkle Classes on Sat. mornings.   Students in Violin Bk. I and up are coming every  Sat at 3:00pm during the school year to play  Suzuki Repertory and Fiddle Music.   Ask Ms. Cynthia for a TEC Schedule.   For additional inspiration and insight parents are encourage to bring their child to observe older children who are studying in the studio during the week.    It could be the magic 10 min. of the week.


Kindermusik in the PreTwinkle Class

Ms. Cynthia  incorporates her favorite Kindermusik activities in her PreTwinkle classes in her desire to make the children feel comfortable and  meet both the physical needs as well as the social needs of the children.   The Kindermusik curriculum provides a well rounded musical experience for children that ties in perfectly with the PreTwinkle child's need for movement.   Sharing favorite songs and games provides the children with a sense of musical bonding.   She has chosen basic skills from the curriculum that feed in to the skills that the children will need for the violin

Now that Ms. Cynthia is so busy on Saturday mornings teaching Violin, she has not had time to teach the official Kindermusik curriculum.   But she recommends the Kindermusik experience to any parent planning to place their child in a Suzuki program.   This curriculum offers materials for Babies and Toddlers.


Got Violin?   Don't panic!

You will not need a violin during the first 5 to 7 months of PreTwinkle classes.   Your child will be so busy preparing for that violin experience.   Instruction about finding the right violin for your child is provided during the PreTwinkle classes.   Having the opportunity to observe other students in the studio will also help you make a better choice.   Your child will most likely spend 3 years on the first instrument you obtain for him/er,  before s/he needs to get a larger size.    More handouts and information will provide parents a variety of reliable sources for 1/32 and 1/16 size violins that our parents have had good results with.   Do not rush out and get an instrument at a local music store.   General music stores often do not carry small enough instruments for preschoolers and will charge you more for the special order.   They do not have anyone who is trained to understand what is needed for a preschooler.   It is  also very difficult to get a refund from a local music retailer.


Get Ready, Set, Go!

--is a check list of things you do need to do and get to start as a PreTwinkler at TEC in the order that you will need them.   We encourage you to print info taps on New Preschoolers  for your own reference.    We know  that parents are busy and that getting organized is half the battle.   In addition there is a list of items required for study at TEC for each stage of learning.

Talent Education Center: Suzuki Violin © 2009
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