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Suzuki violin


Suzuki Violin

Every student in Kindergarten is taught to play the violin by Gail Acosta, a skilled violin teacher trained in the Suzuki method age appropriate to these students. Violin class is taught in the classroom and involves the classroom teacher and parent volunteers.

The class is taught for one half hour with students divided into two “master classes” of approximately ten students each. When one master class receives instruction, the other is outside the classroom engaged in a music-related activity with parent volunteers. Inside the classroom, instruction commences with students and teacher greeting each other respectfully in Japanese.

Students are taught the parts of the violin and bow and to respect and value their instrument. Students learn numerous physical positions necessary for playing the violin; these include proper foot stance, rest position with violin under arm, bow hold, violin placement under chin and pizzicato with thumb on fingerboard. Toward the conclusion of the year, students begin to learn to draw the bow across the strings. 

Students also begin to read music on a staff and to apply the rhythms they have learned while drawing the bow across the string beginning to make a full sound. Using open strings and simple fingerings, students learn a basic repertoire. At year’s end, all students perform in a violin recital.


Our first through fifth grade classes all receive music instruction with our Music Teacher, Ms. Lee. When students participate in the various parts of music, connections are made in many areas of their thinking (i.e. spatial reasoning, English Language Development, math and fractions) which in turn improves the whole students’ approach to learning.

Music is also a way for students to express themselves emotionally, which leads to improvement in self-esteem and cooperative learning. Music classes are also designed to link up to the middle school and high school programs. Providing a solid base at the elementary level, students can then make this transition to higher levels of music classes with ease.


The Colfax Instrumental Music Program consists of beginning and advanced students who play violin, cello, flute, clarinet, trumpet and trombone. Students in grades 3-5 have the option to sign up for the Colfax Orchestra, which meets for an hour once a week with our Orchestra teacher, Ms Conrad. The students enjoy performing opportunities such as the Holiday Program, the World Fair, the Culminating Concert, as well as other special invitational performing venues.


Students in grades 3-5 have the opportunity to participate in Chorus. Our Chorus meets for an hour once a week with our Music teacher and they perform what they have practiced during a holiday recital and at the end of the school year!