The British Suzuki Music Association has many roles but most importantly it is responsible for conducting the Suzuki teacher training programmes as part of the European Suzuki Association system. 

The BSMA run centrally administered teacher training courses in Violin, Viola, Cello, Piano, and Recorder, which are administered and supported by the BSMA office.  Independent courses are also provided by some individual teacher trainers. .

All Suzuki teachers and Suzuki families are members of the BSMA and participate in workshops, national concerts, summer schools, graduations, conferences and other events organised by the association. Members receive our annual magazine with articles relevant to the Suzuki method and current information on events in Britain and Europe. Teacher members of the BSMA are automatically part of the European Suzuki Association which is responsible for continuing the work of Dr Suzuki and the International Suzuki Association throughout Europe. 

How courses are taught

The BSMA teacher training course is a part-time, long-term course held throughout each year in various regions across the UK. 

Courses are held during weekends, with a longer course at Easter which includes observation at the National Suzuki Workshop. Some courses also include attendance at summer schools. Most courses will include a small amount of online tuition - the cello and recorder courses are incorporating a hybrid format of online and face to face attendance.

Each level requires attendance at an average of 18 days training. 

Trainees usually take a year to complete each level. However, they may choose to take longer if they wish. Except in exceptional circumstances, a minimum of five years is required to complete all examinations and therefore achieve the ESA Diploma and Graduate Teacher status.

Course content

Trainees learn how to implement the Suzuki approach to music education while developing all aspects of their own playing and teaching. 

Suzuki teachers are specially trained to work with children from the age of three or four, and learn how to foster all aspects of a child's musical growth with a positive and supportive approach and a greater understanding of the need for music in every child's life. 

Trainees develop their own performance ability, musical memory, tone production, technique and musicianship, and gain the confidence to instil these skills in all their students. With great emphasis placed on observation of other teachers and practice teaching at every level, trainees have the invaluable opportunity to learn from those who have had many years of experience and can therefore provide constructive feedback on each trainee's teaching skills.

Course topics

Areas covered on training courses include: Suzuki philosophy, Mother Tongue methodology, Observation of lessons, Instrumental study, Technique, Tone production, Musical memory, Aural perception, Developing children's listening skills, Posture and use of the body, Child development, Child psychology, Group teaching, Repertoire classes, Interpretation and awareness of style, Approaches to teaching music reading, Teaching theory skills, Dealing with learning difficulties, Parent education, Teaching pre-school age children, Establishing a Suzuki teaching practice, Business skills for music teachers, Chamber music, Ensemble.

BSMA Training Courses

London – Brentford, Director: Tessa Oakley
Cello TT Course Dates 2023-24

Flute and Recorder  
London – Brentford, Director: Nancy Daly
Recorder TT Course Dates 2023-24

London - Brentford, Director: Sue Bird
Piano TT Course Dates 2023-24

London - Brentford, Director: Margaret Parkin
Midlands - North Birmingham, Director: Heather Clemson 
Scotland - Edinburgh, Director: Mysie Ferguson
Violin TT Course Dates 2023-24

Proposed dates for all courses, 24/25 (as at 08/03/2024)

Teacher Training Syllabus

The BSMA teacher training course follows the guidelines set by the European Suzuki Association. In order to take the ESA level examinations and gain accreditation as a Suzuki teacher, all teacher trainees must complete the ESA training syllabus and pass the ESA examination at each level, as well as be a Member of their national Suzuki organisation.

ESA Teacher Training Manual

BSMA Teacher Training Course Directors

Our Course Directors are highly qualified and experienced Suzuki Teacher Trainers. They guide and support trainees throughout their training process as well as providing a varied programme of training sessions. 

You can contact our Course Directors at [email protected] and learn more about them below.

British Suzuki Music Association CIO is registered in England & Wales under charity number 1186062 at Unit C, Q West, 1110 Great West Road, Brentford, TW8 0GP. We use cookies to improve your experience using this website. To learn more, read our privacy policy.
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