Christa Muller Hendricks is one of the most highly-trained Suzuki teachers in America. She received long-term teacher training in the Suzuki method at The Hartt School, one of the nation’s pre-eminent programs for Suzuki pedagogy. Long-term teacher training is available at only a few institutions in America, and requires a longer period of study than short-term teacher training covering one specific book level. Christa completed The Hartt School’s concentrated two-year program curriculum, including in-depth study of the repertoire in volumes 1-8 of the Suzuki Violin School, over 75 hours of lesson observation, a year-long teaching mentorship with Hartt Suzuki faculty member Donna Ngai, and the completion of a lecture recital tracing a specific pedagogical concept throughout the Suzuki repertoire.
Committed to continue learning whenever possible, Christa has completed advanced teacher training units including Suzuki Principles in Action and a year-long teaching Practicum with professor Pat D'Ercole at The Aber Suzuki Center (University of Wisconsin-Steven's Point). In Spring 2017, Christa will finish a second complete round of long-term training (Units 1-8) with Pat D'Ercole via Skype audit. She has also attended the Delay-Starling Symposium on Violin Studies at The Juilliard School, the Suzuki Association of the Americas National Conference, the Ithaca Suzuki Institute, and the Hartt Suzuki Institute.
Christa has been a member of the violin faculty at The Northampton Community Music Center since Fall 2011, where she maintains a studio of around 20 students in Suzuki Books 1-7, leads two weekly group classes, and coaches chamber music. At this time, she is accepting students ages four and older in the Pioneer Valley Area.
The Suzuki Method - An Overview
Christa Muller Hendricks
Known around the world today for revolutionizing the field of early childhood education, the Suzuki method was developed and implemented in Japan, soon after the end of World War II. Shinichi Suzuki, a conservatory violin teacher, responded to the horrors of war with concern not for himself, but for the many children orphaned or displaced during wartime. Suzuki sought to teach these children how to become noble, caring personalities through a carefully structured program of musical study; a concept he had been researching for years prior to the war.
The amazing success the method had with those and future young students is attributed to Suzuki’s philosophy of the “mother-tongue” approach, which teaches the skills of playing a musical instrument in a simple, organic way similar to how an infant learns its native language. Through the focused cooperation of parent, teacher, and student, study of the Suzuki method strives not to create professional musicians, but principled and compassionate people. The Suzuki method has also been successful in helping disabled and special-needs students, including the blind and partially paralyzed. The benefits of disciplined, repetitive study encouraged by love and support can be seen in the physical, neurologic, and cognitive developments made by Suzuki students of every age and instrument.
While the Suzuki method requires a significant amount of time and labor on the parts of the student and parent, the satisfaction and educational value of this enlightened course of study is truly a life-changing process for everyone involved.
For more information about the Suzuki method, please visit the Suzuki Association of the Americas.
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©2017 Christa Muller Hendricks