Feed Intrinsic Motivation through your Lifestyle
- Play Classical Music in the house (Not just the Suzuki CD, as important as that is!)
- Attend BSO Family Concerts and other family concerts around town
- Invite over family friends who play, and have a jam session together
- Find storybooks and or CD series about musicians, composers, and instruments
- Respect your child's efforts: they may not take it too well if they feel condescended to, or if their playing is perceived as "cute"
- Discuss new concepts throughout your day as they come to mind
Build Habits and Routines
- Practice at the same time every day: find a time that is easy for the child to focus and doesn't invade cherished activities
- Institute a "Reward ritual" after every practice (ie: cuddling, reading a story, having Hot Chocolate, playing a concert for a stuffed animal, recording a snippet and sending it to Grandma)
- Honor the practice time yourself: honor the practice place, and avoid distractions from siblings or your phone - communicate the message that "This is an important work!"
Birds of a Feather Flock Together
- Become friends with other youngsters who practice and create play-dates that may or may not include the violin
- Join a group class, orchestra, young ensemble, or theory class.
- Peer support systems are especially important as we approach Middle School and High School years!
Assist through tricky times with External Motivators
- Practice charts with stickers
- Rewards for performing in a concert or completing a difficult task: dinner out, nice new outfit, new toy
- Marble Method: place a marble in a jar for every good practice (ie: you came when you were called, you finished all the assignments, you had a cheerful attitude)
- Take a RCMDP Assessment (Late Bk1+)
No Need to Reinvent the Wheel
- Chat with other parents for ideas on practice motivation
- Google "Suzuki Practice Games" (this should keep you busy for a few months, or even years!)
- Look up "Suzuki Practice Games" on Pinterest