«All children learn their mother tongue naturally through listening and imitating.» Shin’ichi Suzuki
This simple observation inspires and guides the great Japanese teacher Shin’ichi Suzuki- in mid-XXth century- to develop a method to learn to play an instrument based on listening and imitating. The Suzuki Method has allowed many generations develop their musical talents and it has gained international recognition thereafter.
Originally developed to teach violin, the method was adapted to other instruments: cello, piano, flute, and others.
Eden School is convinced by this philosophy as it is based on the idea that «all children have the potential to learn to play an instrument». In 2015 they decided to offer group classes based on the Suzuki method for all students as well as private lessons to those who wish to learn to play the violin or the piano.
In order to turn this project into reality, Eden School sought a specialist in the Suzuki method: a person who also learned how to play an instrument at the age of three and that took it upon himself to develop classes for groups and students who would use their voices and their own bodies as instruments. This choice, both logical and practical, would allow the students to begin building a relationship with their very own instrument, their voice, and begin to discover its potential to produce emotions, sounds and music.
To take this even further, Eden School asked the music teacher to develop in the children another important aspect of music: listening skills. That is, their inner ear. This aspect is very important for music and, in equal measure, to live in society. From a individual point of view, it is necessary to listen to one’s inner self, listen to one’s needs and wants. The social aspect of the art of listening results in the incorporation of knowledge, experiences and conflict resolution. Every human being needs to learn to listen and grasp the deeper sense of what is being said. Music is the key to acquire these abilities without using words, where the tiniest emotion can be translated into sounds, noises and melodies.
In a more ample sense, music is useful in several aspects: most importantly, it collaborates towards the development of both hemispheres of the brain and their interconnections, coordination of movements, memory, imagination, creativity and work methodology amongst others.
Therefore, it is not surprising to discover that scientists from around the world are discovering the healing properties of music for example when treating dyslexia or chronic pain.
This long-term project began in 2015 at Eden School. It aims to help students to become budding musicians, but more importantly it allows them to open themselves up to others and to themselves by sharing emotions conveyed in music and instruments.
“Teaching music is not my main purpose. I want to make good citizens. If children hear fine music from the day of their birth and learn to play it, they develop sensitivity, discipline and endurance. They get a beautiful heart.” Shin’ichi Suzuki