By Kathryn Brunner, Founder of Musik at Home, LLC
Is your child ready to begin learning an instrument, but you're not sure where to start?
Meet Sarah Van Kleeck from Practice Monkeys!
Sarah offers LIVE online Suzuki violin lessons for beginning to advanced students. She also offers LIVE online beginning Suzuki piano lessons.
Practice Monkeys is a mind-blowing model for formal instrumental study that actually works!
Students take lessons for 15 minutes a day, four days a week. It's a total of an hour of instruction each week.
Students can begin her violin program as early as age 4. All you need is a violin or piano, and an internet connection!
Here is an example of Sarah's teaching style! She is absolutely lovely!
Not sure if your child is ready to begin lessons?
After completing our program here at Musik at Home, your child will be ready to begin formal instrument lessons.
I am partnering with Sarah Van Kleeck from Practice Monkeys to help you find an instrumental pathway for your child after your Musik at Home classes.
In addition, our programs compliment one another so well that students can take Musik at Home classes and Practice Monkeys lessons at the same time.
My Story with Violin
My oldest daughter has always expressed an interest in learning to play the violin.
In the summer of 2018, we hired a teacher to come to our home to teach our daughter. We had a lovely relationship with the teacher. She taught many of the basics in the 30 minute lesson each week.
However, those basics weren't translating into efficient practicing for my daughter.
In fact, my daughter was so intimidated by the songs she was supposed to practice that she didn't end up practicing much at all without a fight.
(Keep in mind that she wholeheartedly desired to play this instrument!)
Where was the disconnect?
Simply put, a 30 minute lesson once a week did not work because my daughter needed further guidance during her practice sessions each week.
As a music teacher myself, I know that a parent's job is to encourage my child practice, sit with her through her practice sessions and also be available to take down her questions to ask her teacher later.
Yes, I was doing my job as a parent to the best of my ability.
The only problem was that my help wasn't enough to get her past the massive practice hurdles she was facing.
Wow....that was super humbling to swallow since I am a career musician as a pianist, vocalist and guitarist. I am not a violinist.
Enter Practice Monkeys...
In December 2018, I won a big giveaway for 30 days of violin lessons with Practice Monkeys. While our current teacher was out of town for two months, we thought we would give Practice Monkeys a solid try.
Honestly, I wasn't sure what to expect.
Yes, I have created an entire online program here at Musik at Home for early childhood music education to train students in whole body musicianship including rhythm, melody, coordination skills, motor skills all to prepare students to begin learning an instrument....
...but, formal instrumental study is a whole different ballgame.
I am pleased to share with you that I am totally thrilled with Sarah's teaching approach through Practice Monkeys.
As a music educator, I can tell you that what Sarah is doing is the REAL DEAL!
She teaches the Suzuki method with energy, love, and passion for excellence.
Not only did Practice Monkeys get my daughter practicing more than 15 minutes a day during the live classes, it revived my daughter's love for learning how to play the violin!
When students pick up their instruments every day, that's when the learning really begins to happen.
Learning an instrument is like learning to ride a bike. You can't do it unless you get out there and try it again and again and again!
With Sarah's help, my daughter has now passed her assessments to reach level 4!
Look at the all out exuberant joy below!
My sweet girl has violin in her veins! All she needed was a little extra help to get over the tough days of practicing new material.
If a child isn't thriving in music lessons, something needs to be tweaked.
For us, we figured out that my daughter needed encouragement to pick up her instrument while getting the technical help she needed.
Practice Monkeys is the perfect solution for us!
Here's an example of Sarah's teaching style in level 4. In this short video, she helps students play scales in three different keys.
Here's the final outcome of our 30 day trial:
We are sticking with Practice Monkeys!
My older daughter loves it!
One thing I love about the program is that my younger daughter was able to start learning violin as well for no additional cost.
One low Practice Monkeys tuition includes membership for all of the children in your family.
Here's a short lesson for little ones on how to use the bow.
How does it work?
You sign up at PracticeMonkeys.com. Sarah will place your child in the proper level. She will tell you what time of day your class meets. All classes are 15 minutes long.
You prepare your device by connecting to the Zoom meeting link she provides. You prepare your child with the instrument needed for class. You stay with your child for the duration of class to help in any way that is needed.
Here is my four year old doing her very first assessment to pass Violin Level 1!
When you sign up to connect with me, Kathryn, here at Musik at Home, you'll also get access to a brand new summer music board game I created to help your child learn rhythm basics! I hope you love it!
My goal is to share resources with you that will help you thrive at home and help your child hit big music-making goals!