Studio Policies

Parental involvement

As with the acquisition of language skills, parents are deeply involved in the child’s process of learning to play the violin. For children under 10, a parent or adult is required to attend every lesson, for the entire lesson. Ideally, the same parent, as the “home teacher”, practices daily with the child. This ensures that the child receives consistent information and that practice sessions are productive. Remember, most of the child’s learning will take place at home.
I do understand that it is not possible for some families to have the same parent attend each lesson and do home practice every day. I will work with each family to come up with a plan for lessons and practice that is doable, positive, and facilitates the child’s musical learning. Note-taking and filming at lessons are great ways to ensure that everyone knows what to work on at home.

Parent Education

Lessons start with a few meetings between myself and the parent, or with a small group of parents. This extra time enables us to start building our parent-teacher relationship, a key component of the Suzuki approach, and makes lessons with the child run much more smoothly when they begin. During these parent-teacher sessions, we cover the information and techniques laid out in the “parent phases” in Ed Sprunger’s book Building Violin Skills. Please purchase a copy of the book and look through it before our first meeting.

Practice

A large determinant of your child’s success with music is the quality and consistency of home practice. We practice to make things easier. Regular practice is essential for learning an instrument. It is my job to give you the tools you need to be able to teach your child at home.
Please practice a minimum of 5 days a week with your child. It is much more useful to practice a little bit every day – even for 1 minute – than to save it all for a few long sessions.

Scheduling Lessons

Weekly lessons are scheduled in the fall. This will be your lesson day and time for the entire school year.
For new students, I ask that parents commit to lessons for one school year.

Tuition

Tuition is charged on a monthly basis as follows:

30 minute lessons: $125/month
45 minute lessons: $170/month
60 minute lessons: $225/month

Monthly tuition covers private lessons, group classes, and recitals (minus the accompanist’s fee).
Payment is due at the first lesson of each month. A fee of $25 will be added for
late payments.

I want music lessons to be available to everyone. If tuition presents a serious challenge for your family, please talk to me about sliding scale and work-trade options.

Missed Lessons

There are no refunds for missed lessons or classes; monthly tuition remains the same regardless of the number of lessons and group classes attended that month. This includes studio closures for holidays and vacations. During some months your child will receive five lessons, during others three or four.
If you have to miss your regular lesson, I am able to offer makeup lessons if I receive 24 hours’ notice and I am
able to schedule the lesson during that month. If I have to miss a lesson, I will make it up or offer a refund.
For families who are interested, I will also provide a calendar with my teaching schedule and contact info for participating families, so that students can swap lessons if scheduling conflicts or illness arise.

Group Classes and Recitals

Monthly group classes are an important source of musical learning and inspiration for students and families. There will be eight group classes over the course of the year, and attendance at at least five is required. Parents should plan to attend as well.
There will also be two student recitals during the 2015-16 school year. Recitals provide a sense of accomplishment for students, a chance to share what they have learned, and the opportunity to experience performing in a supportive setting. They are also a much needed opportunity for us all to eat cookies together. Attendance at both recitals is required.
Please see the studio calendar for dates, times and locations of group classes and recitals.

Summer Lessons

Summer lessons are required to retain a spot in the studio. I ask that each student sign up for six lessons during the summer months. Summer tuition is as follows:

30 minute lessons: $185
45 minute lessons: $260
60 minute lessons: $335

Communicating with me

Please feel free to call or email me if you have questions or thoughts you would like to discuss concerning your child’s lessons. I am always happy to hear how things are going at home, and want to work together with the parent to tailor each child’s musical journey to the individuality of the student and his/her family.