Lisa Goddard runs the Goddard Violin Studio from her home in Jamaica Plain. She accepts students ages 4 and up for private lessons and group classes. For more information about Lisa's Suzuki violin studio, please see below.
PRIVATE LESSONS are the bread and butter of learning an instrument. The individual attention at private lessons allows students to develop strong technique, excellent playing posture, and skills for both learning by ear and note reading. Parents attend with their young children to take notes, and act as the conduit between lessons and practicing at home. Private lessons occur weekly, and are 30, 45, or 60 minutes depending on the student's level and age.
GROUP CLASSES provide another essential part of the Suzuki curriculum, providing an opportunity for students in the program to play, learn, and review the material together. Group classes build ensemble skills, interpersonal skills, and provide opportunities to practice performing.
CONCERTS give students opportunities to share their playing with family and friends, and celebrate the fruits of their hard work. Students perform both solo recitals and as a group.
Fall outdoor group play-in: Thursday, September 13 at 5:45 pm; Loring-Greenough House Lawn, Jamaica Plain
Fall semester recital: Wednesday, January 23 at 5:30 pm; St. John's Church, Jamaica Plain
PRACTICING at home on a daily basis is essential. Violin is a complicated instrument requiring consistent practice to build the skills necessary to play. Parents of young beginners are expected to practice with their child, using their notes from the private lesson. Consistent daily practice builds not only strong skills but motivation and progress.
LISTENING to music at home surrounds students with music, and enables them to learn by ear from the beginning. The Suzuki material is available on CD and through online music services, and provides an excellent model of violin playing. Once students have learned the mechanics of the instrument, they learn their new songs by ear, before even learning to read music. As with practicing, consistent daily listening is essential and can not be substituted for or crammed.
COMMUNITY is one of the great assets of a Suzuki education. Group classes and performances foster a local community of parents, students, and families in the program. Students are encouraged and empowered to serve their greater community through performances. Suzuki families are also part of the international Suzuki community, which provides resources and common experience from the local level, to the Massachusetts Suzuki Association, the Suzuki Association of the Americas, and other global Suzuki associations.
PARENT EDUCATION enables parents to be effective learning partners for their children. Parents provide an essential conduit from private lessons to home learning through practicing and listening with their children. Suzuki education requires a significant investment of time for parents, but it is an incredibly worthwhile investment in their parent-child relationships and enables very young children to build strong musical skills at an ideal developmental time (but before they have developed the executive functioning to practice on their own). Parent education begins with a parent-teacher meeting before lessons begin, covering the philosophy and practice of the Suzuki method and essential information for getting started. Thereafter, Lisa provides resources for continuing education, and hosts occasional events for parents.
The Suzuki method is modeled on the way children learn their native languages. With love and care, every child can learn to play the violin just as they can learn to speak. As such, the Suzuki teacher and parent work together to foster each child's musical development. Students first learn by ear, which allows them to build exemplary posture and technique, while developing lifelong aural and memory skills. Reading comes later, just as with language, and eventually becomes the primary source of information. Throughout, students maintain a body of repertoire to perform, polish, and build new skills through consistent review.
Learning by the Suzuki Method also gives students a larger community beyond their studio. The common repertoire and learning philosophy allows meaningful connection between students and families in the region, across the U.S., and beyond. Students are encouraged to attend such events as the Massachusetts Suzuki Festival (weekend workshop each spring) and summer institutes.
Lisa is a registered member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas, and the Massachusetts Suzuki Association. She has completed registered training at the Colorado, Chicago, and Hartt Suzuki Institutes with Liz Arbus, Martha Shackford, Joanne Melvin, Kathy Wood, Ed Kreitman, and Ann Montzka Smelser.
Lisa has been teaching privately for several years. She currently runs her own Suzuki program in Jamaica Plain, and was previously on the Suzuki faculty at All Newton Music School. She has taught as a guest in the JP Suzuki Studio, Suzuki School of Newton, Concord Conservatory of Music, and Wellesley Public Schools. While living in Ohio, Lisa taught in the Oberlin Community Music School and the Oberlin College of Arts and Sciences.
Lisa is also an avid professional violinist in greater Boston. She can be heard with many groups, including the Pro Arte Chamber Orchestra, Boston Ballet Orchestra, Portland Symphony, Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Boston Baroque, and the Handel and Haydn Society. She enjoys frequent appearances with Cardamom Quartet, a string quartet engaged in reimagining the traditional canon and committed to sharing music with a wide variety of audiences.
Lisa holds a Master of Music degree from New England Conservatory, a Bachelor of Music degree from Oberlin Conservatory, and a Bachelor of Arts from Oberlin College. She has completed extensive Suzuki training through the Suzuki Association of the Americas, and is a proud member of the Suzuki Association of the Americas, Massachusetts Suzuki Association, and Boston Musicians' Association.
"My son, N, first started learning violin under Lisa in August 2014. He was only 4 at the time and had no experience with the violin or any other instrument. Given his age, I worried about starting him so young and introducing him to the Suzuki method. Lisa impressed me right away with her ability to pique his interest and share her enthusiasm for the violin. She was careful to start slowly in the beginning with basic techniques, exercises and melodies. By the time we moved into Twinkle variations, she had developed a rapport with N that was friendly but firm, and consistently encouraging. I always appreciate Lisa’s attention to detail and tone quality, making sure that pieces are constantly reviewed and improved even as we tackle new ones. When we run into challenges with songs or at times, N’s attention, Lisa is patient and finds a way to address issues with new practice techniques or motivating drills that are age appropriate."
"I love the way Lisa talks to kids. She seems to have a genuine respect for them as people, which is in keeping with Dr. Suzuki’s mission. I know my daughter likes her, because she can see that Lisa cares about her as a person, and cares about what she thinks and feels. Lisa’s feedback and assignments are always clear."
"My daughter started taking violin lessons with Lisa when she had just turned 4 years old. I am not a mom who had any experience with the Suzuki method nor had any musical background, but L was eager to play violin and so I went with it. From my first meeting with Lisa, it was clear to me that Lisa was immensely knowledgeable about and committed to teaching music to children. Since starting her lessons, L has made tremendous gains with Lisa in learning how to play and how to practice. Lisa is calm, patient and focused while also playful and encouraging. She is tuned into what L needs, capable of being both being directive and flexible. She also has been accessible and supportive to me as a new Suzuki parent, connecting me with endless resources and other violin parents. I can tell L is proud of how far she has come with the violin and I know her engagement in this learning is because Lisa has engaged her in such a positive, effective way."
Weekly lessons are an important part of the student’s musical development. Each student will receive a regular weekly private lesson time based on mutual availability. The duration of the weekly lesson will be agreed upon by the teacher, student, and parent. Regular attendance and consistent preparation are expected. Daily practice reinforces material assigned at each lesson, and is vital to the student’s development. One consistent parent is required to attend each lesson, take notes, and practice with their child. Regular attendance at group classes is expected, both for students and parents.
The teacher may need to reschedule lessons due to professional performing engagements or other personal scheduling needs. Notice for such scheduling differences will be given with as much advance notice as possible.
The student or parent must notify the teacher by email or phone at least 24 hours in advance of a cancellation. In the case of sudden illness or emergency, the student or parent will call with as much advance notice as possible. Payment represents a reservation of the teacher’s time; in the event that the student misses a scheduled lesson, no make-up lessons or refunds are offered, regardless of notice given. Do not come to a lesson or bring your child to a lesson ill. Lateness is disruptive; time lost from lessons due to a student’s late arrival will not be made up. If lessons are cancelled due to extreme weather, one makeup will be offered per semester, or Skype lessons will be arranged. If a conflict arises one week, students may swap lessons if mutually beneficial; please notify Lisa if this is the case. A contact list will be distributed to parents early in the fall.
If the teacher needs to make an unexpected cancellation, she will provide at least 24 hours notice to the student or parent, except in case of sudden illness or emergency, in which case she will provide as much advance notice as possible. If the teacher misses or cancels a lesson, a make-up lesson will be offered. In the event a make-up lesson for a teacher absence is impossible or impractical, that lesson will not count towards the student’s lesson total for the semester.
Attendance at group classes is expected and important. No refunds or make-ups will be offered for student absences from group class.
Tuition covers 16 private lessons, 8 group lessons, a recital, piano accompaniment, and a parent lecture between February 1, 2017 and June 14, 2017. Payment is due by the first lesson of the semester. The late fee is $25. Payment may be made by check or online.
30-minute private + group = $814 credit (check $790)
45-minute private + group = $1071 credit (check $1040)
60-minute private + group = $1329 credit (check $1290)
Payment plan available upon request.
Fall Solo Recital
Wednesday, January 23 at 5:30 pm, St. John's Church (1 Roanoke Ave., Jamaica Plain)
Outdoor Group Play-in
Thursday, September 13 at 5:45 pm, Loring-Greenough House, Jamaica Plain
Fall semester: September 4, 2018 - January 24, 2019
Pre-Twinkle group class dates: 9/19, 10/3, 10/17, 11/7, 11/28, 12/12, 1/9
Book 1-2 group class dates: 9/12, 9/26, 10/10, 10/31, 11/14, 12/5, 12/19
These special event dates include everyone from both group classes:
10/24 Studio Class
1/16 Dress rehearsal
Johnson String Instrument (instrument rental and sales, strings, accessories, sheet music)
1029 Chestnut Street, Newton Upper Falls, MA 02464
617 964-0954 | 800 359-9351
Wiessmeyer and Dignan (instrument repair, bow rehair, accessories)
295 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115
Marco Coppiardi (instrument sales and repair)
Newbury Street, Boston, MA
Music Espresso (sheet music)
295 Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA 02115
Violin (appropriate size)
Shoulder rest (I recommend a sponge, Polypad, or Kun)
Suzuki Book 1 (violin part)
Suzuki Book 1 recording
Please bring all of these materials (except the recording) to every lesson.
Please do not purchase a violin without bringing it to me first. Most young students will rent an instrument from Johnson String Instrument, which is a cost-effective way to find appropriately sized instruments for children.
To Learn with Love, by William and Constance Starr
Helping Parents Practice, by Ed Sprunger
Nurtured by Love, by Shinichi Suzuki
Teaching with an Open Heart, by Edward Kreitman
How to Talk So Kids Will Listen and Listen So Kids Will Talk, by Adele Faber and Elaine Mazlish
Playful Parenting, by Lawrence Cohen
About the Suzuki Method, fundamentals from the Suzuki Association of the Americas
Important Ideas to Remember in Your Role as a Suzuki Parent, by Teri Einfeldt
Suzuki Violin Pieces in their Original Forms, by Mark Polesky
Suzuki Triangle, by Christine Goodner
The Ideal Violinist, by Bayla Keyes
Improve Your Talent series, by Greg Beaver
Practice Self-Audit, by Johnah Sirota
Getting Kids to Practice, from NPR
Establishing Artistic Goals in Your Practice, by Rebecca Fischer
Complexity and the Ten-Thousand-Hour Rule, by Malcolm Gladwell
Contextual Interference in Structuring Practice Time, from the Bulletproof Musician
The practice of practicing, by Stephen Hough
Secrets of a Mind-Gamer, from the New York Times
Is Slow Practice Really Necessary?, from the Bulletproof Musician
Long-Term Benefits of Music Lessons, from the New York Times
Interested? The best way to get started is to observe another student's lesson. This is an opportunity for both parent and child to meet Lisa, see a lesson, and ask questions. From there, the next step is to schedule a parent-teacher meeting (1 hour, billed at $60), which covers the philosophy and practice of the Suzuki method, the parent's role in lessons, logistics for getting started, and what to expect within the first year.
Private Lessons are at Lisa's apartment, in Jamaica Plain very near the Forest Hills Station (exact location available upon request).
Group Classes are at St. John's Church, 1 Roanoke Ave, Jamaica Plain.