Are you getting ready for beginning of the school year? And perhaps scheduling your new Suzuki group classes?
I am reluctantly so. I have spent a lot of time relaxing this summer so starting school is difficult. If you are like me, you may need some ready ideas for your Suzuki group classes to use right away.
4 Fun Suzuki Group Class
Games & Activities for Beginning of the School Year
You can combine two or more of these Suzuki group activities to schedule a complete Suzuki violin lesson plan. This is explained at the bottom of the post. Or use separately in each class.
Have fun teaching!
Show Me What you Did During the Summer With Your Instrument
For this activity the students use their instrument in order to show the other students. The rest of the class needs to guess the activity.
I have a detailed post about this Suzuki group activity. Instead of writing it again, please find it here.
Use it as a change of pace at the end class.
This is a great Suzuki activity to do with a bit older students who have a bit more tools. I have done it successfully with Book 2 students and older. However, upper Book 1 students may also enjoy it.
The Name Game Play Down
If you have students who are new and need to get to know each other, then you can play this simple game. You will do a regular play down of your pieces. However, each student will get to choose the next piece played by introducing themselves and the students who have played before. It goes like this:
- I am Ms Maria and we will play Twinkle
- I am Anna. This is Ms Maria. Next we will Play Song of the Wind
- I am John. This is Ms Maria and this is Anna. Now we will play Allegro
- I am Carry. This is Ms Maria, Anna and John. Now we will play…
You get the idea. This can be fun to play. It gets funny if you have a big class and the kids at the end have to remember everyone’s name.
Same Suzuki Activity Changing the Script
You may choose to play the same game but instead of memorizing the names, the students will get to say what they have done during the summer. Use it with students who know each other well. So it would go like this:
- I am Ms Maria. I went to the mountains during the summer. The song I choose to play is Twinkle.
- Next student would say: Ms Maria went to the mountains. I visited my grandma in Denver. The song I choose to play next is Lightly Row.
- Next student: Ms Maria went to the mountains. Anna visited her grandma. I stayed home and watched a lot of movies. The song I choose is…
This is fun to play! You can change the script any way you like.
Use this last game as a start of the school year in group lessons and schedule it at the beginning of the lesson.
Always start with the teacher choosing the first piece and the teacher modeling how the game would be played and what each student must say.
Solo Time as Suzuki Violin Game for Beginning of the Year
I created this Suzuki group activity for my own students last year and they enjoyed it quite a bit. It is now uploaded so you can have it ready.
Use it if you want your students to play solos individually at the end of class. Also great of you are not quite sure what shape your students are after the long break. It is a good way to “check out” their level and what you need to focus on.
In this activity uses flashcards. You print and cut the cards so that the students see the top part only. You can either put all top pieces face up and all bottom pieces face down. Or fold the paper in half so they can only see one side. The students get to pick a card based on what they did during the break and share with the class. Then on the back they have to complete the sssignment based on what they did.
It looks like this:
This activity is super quick and it uses a few of the early book 1 pieces. It is priced less than a dollar 🙂 as it is short and sort of an experiment. So you can get it here or create your own quickly.
If you do enjoy it and you would like to see the same one created with upper songs OR in different languages, then please drop me a quick note in the comment section or email me.
If You Decide to Schedule a Complete Suzuki Group Class Around These Activities:
I have been getting emails from novice teachers who are starting their teacher training and beginning their work in group classes. I try to provide more tips on scheduling group classes. So you may schedule your beginning of the year Suzuki group class as:
This first lesson plan may be very good for younger students:
- I would start class with the name game, or its version.
- I would do something more specific, like work on one specific piece. Have students focus on a specific skill like following the leader, keeping their scrolls up, good bow hold, etc.
- I would close the class with the ready Suzuki class activity. This way after the group playing students would do a solo.
Second option (use this for Book 2 and older students):
- Start the class centering the students seating on the floor. Tell them that you are excited to hear what they did during the break. However, they need to keep this as a secret as the class will play a game around it.
- Start with specific work on a single piece.
- Do a play down or review of pieces. You can use the fun activities above or do a simple play through the pieces to see where the students are at after the break.
- Play Show Me What You Did During The Summer Game. This will take longer.
- Solo time or the last activity depending on time left.
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