It’s confession time, everyone. I’ve been feeling really burnt out the last month or so. I’ve been tired and frustrated, oftentimes with no apparent reason! Do you ever feel that way? When you start to focus on all the things that are going wrong instead of going right? When you zero in on how far you still have to go instead of how far you’ve come?
Please say yes.
Fortunately, these past two weeks have been the shot in the arm I needed. Here are the violin teaching tips, tricks, and resources that have helped me out of a really bad funk.
5 Violin Teaching Tips, Tricks, and Resources…
1. While not directly aimed at violin teachers, these videos about mindset and achieving goals have truly changed the way I’ve been thinking about my personal development and my teaching. I think these principles are important to teach to my students as well!
2. I think Paula Bird must be able to read my mind, because this is the title of one of her most recent podcasts, “How to Beat Burnout.” I know, freaky right? While it is aimed at Suzuki parens, it all applies to teachers too!
3. Yesterday was the first day of the Intermountain Suzuki String Institute. I am taking Suzuki violin book 4 teacher training with Mark Mutter and it is AWESOME. I’m so excited about all the techniques and tools I’m going to try with my students. Big things coming, you guys. I highly encourage everyone to get to a teacher training workshop this summer. It’s the best way to beat teacher burnout in my opinion!
4. Do you have any students in your studio that seem to have a tough time with not playing things perfectly the first time? I can think of a few in mine that every time that can’t just nail something the first time through they get very upset. Alan Duncan recently wrote a post called, “How to Deal with Frustration Intolerance in Suzuki Students,” and as soon as I saw the title I thought, “That is exactly what I’m seeing here!” Here’s quote from the post that I liked,
Certain cognitive styles, especially perfectionism make children prone to the outcomes of low frustration tolerance. When a difficult passage fails to yield to a few quick attempts, the perfectionist child is often frustrated by the inability to learn it quickly. Children who are rigid, black/white thinkers also fall into the patterns of low frustration tolerance because the world tends not to always conform to their expectations.
5. Mark Mutter (Suzuki teacher trainer) shared this resource with our class yesterday. It is a database containing the original source material for the Suzuki violin repertoire. Almost all of the pieces in the violin books are transcriptions or arrangements of pieces for other instruments, and because full titles aren’t included in the books it can be difficult to figure out where each piece came from. This site has all of that information about each piece and MORE. I’m very excited to share more historical background about the pieces with my students.
If you are experiencing burnout like I am, I hope some of these resources help perk you up a little bit. You are amazing, and the work you do is so important. It’s hard to remember sometimes, but it’s true. Stay plucky, friends.
How do you avoid teacher burnout? Please share your tips in the comments!
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