I’ve been home for 5 days now so my thoughts are starting to come together in some semblance of organization.
Remember: I teach children to play the violin using the Suzuki Method, which is a way of teaching that mimics the way children learn language. They start by hearing the language, and then repeating it early and often. Once they learn one word, they add onto that. Throughout the learning process, the parent is loving and supportive. Most importantly, it is assumed that the child will learn the language. No one ever asks: is my child talented enough to learn to speak English?
Suzuki Institute is a place where parents, teachers, students come together to learn in an intense environment for (usually) one week. I went to the Ottawa Mid-Southwest Suzuki Institute in Ottawa, Kansas. I took a course for teachers of the method (there are 10 volumes, I took volume 5) that was taught by Susan Kempter, who I greatly admire. I have already taken all 10 volumes (it’s not a certification process but a registration process) but I really wanted to take another class with Susan. Last summer I took volume 4 with her, this year she was teaching volume 5.
I learned two main things:
1) I already know how to teach well. I just need to stay focused and organized. My biggest faults are talking too much and losing track of the goal. If I stay on top of those things, I will really shine.
2) I really want to take Teacher training in Volume 1 again next summer. It’s been too long.
I learned thousands of other tiny things, but those are the biggest things.
Remember that a child is learning from the second they are born. What is it you want them to learn?
If you teach your children, you can change the world.
Okay, so, if you decide to attend Institute, what should you bring? This is for me, so I remember everything next year, or for you if I’ve inspired you to attend Ottawa!
Hand soap for the bathroom
Trash bags for the room
Travel coffee mug
Towels, including hand towel
Jackets/coverups for the over-air-conditioned rooms
Healthy snacks that don’t require refrigeration
Binder, notebook, folder, Suzuki books, pencils
An open mind
Humility and kindness