The Loma Linda Academy String Program
The LLA String Program is a comprehensive program involving students as young as 3 years old through high school. Students are involved in weekly private lessons and group classes. Each of our string teachers hold degrees in music, and each has taken special training in the Suzuki string method for children. The program has a reputation across the country for outstanding quality.
The melody of praise is the atmosphere of heaven; and when heaven comes in touch with the earth, there is music and song. –Ellen G. White
Principles of Learning
Founded on learning philosophies developed by Shinichi Suzuki, the string faculty at LLA has built the program around the following principles:
- Every child has the potential to learn a stringed instrument and play musically at a high level of skill!
- Beginning lessons at a early age and involving a parent actively as the “home teacher” in practicing.
- Using the Suzuki curriculum enables the review of private lesson concepts in a group setting where we teach the skill of playing together with others, and students are motivated by playing with friends.
- Development of ear training is preferred over note reading until solid technique—posture, playing in tune, beautiful tone—is established. As students advance in their skills they learn to read music well.
- Listening to a reference recording of the student’s pieces on a daily basis is essential, similar to babies learning their native language by listening to those around them speak each day.
The core of the program is individual lessons. Suzuki private lessons are unique in the role of a parent as the “at home” teacher. Parents are invited and expected to attend all lessons where they take notes and receive training from the teacher in how to help their child during practice at home. The practice parent will help during each practice session at home. This is a big commitment! However, we believe the rewards are great in the experience for both child and parent. Students are practicing mostly on their own by the time they enter junior high.
All students in the program are required to be part of a group class. It is extremely encouraging for students to develop camaraderie with other kids studying string instruments. Group classes also reinforce skills taught in the private lessons, provide an opportunity to learn new skills which are best introduced in a group setting, and prepare students to play in orchestras and other ensembles.
(Please check with your private lesson teacher for class meeting times. Class requirements may vary depending on students’ needs.)
Perhaps the most important key to success is creating an environment where your child can grow musically. Finding a good teacher and taking a weekly private lesson, listening to the reference recording of your child’s pieces on a daily basis, setting up a regular home practice schedule, and attending group class each week are all keys to helping your child discover the world of music. We also encourage students to attend concerts and recitals to learn from other world-class artists.
Students are given opportunities for performance in both group class format and solo recitals. Group classes generally perform twice each year, once during the Christmas season and once in the spring. All students are required to attend and participate. There may be additional community outreach performance opportunities. The String Program also sponsors two solo recitals each year. Advanced students in the Loma Linda Academy Symphony Orchestra (LLASO) will have further performance opportunities throughout the year.
Information for prospective students can be found on the New Student Enrollment page.