Suzuki Fiddling Group Class Ideas
In September I’m starting to teach a 6-week Suzuki fiddle group class. I’m looking for ideas on games/activities/topics...pretty much anything that would fit specially into the fiddling realm. Brian storm with me!
Cammi, this is topic appears too "open" to me. Is your "Suzuki Fiddle Group Class" a fiddling group for adults? And are you looking to use Suzuki strategies to teach a particular "style" (Old Time, Celtic, Swedish/Scandi, etc)?
Since it's a six-week course, you want to think about how many tunes your students (whatever level they might be) can realistically learn. Presumably at the end of the course there will be some kind of performance, so you want to have a nice variety.
Number 1, obviously you want to keep the notes in the range the already familiar to the students.
Irish tunes for the beginning fiddler book by Pamela kather. Mark O’Connor books. American fiddle method by bryan wicklund.
Sorry, those are books of tunes. I didn’t read your post right.
OK, so real beginners.
Let's say you adopt Brian Wicklund's book, which is probably a good one for the level of your students. A great game is to divide the students into two groups and alternate playing one measure each, or two measures. After you teach them chopping they can trade off doing that. If they have all learned up through a certain level in Suzuki you can use some of their Suzuki tunes to teach ornamentation. If you are going to teach them some chords and harmony, you can compare the typical harmony of a fiddle tune to the harmonies in Twinkle, Song of the Wind, and Go Tell Aunt Rhody. That way the knowledge they gain is not compartmentalized into "fiddle knowledge vs. classical knowledge." Once they learn the chords for Twinkle (and you can help them with that!) they can write those into their parts and chop with Twinkle! Then ask them to devise their own Twinkle bowing pattern that would give it more fiddle character. I think you want to make sure that it's not just hands-on but also minds-on.