“I’m impressed by my daughter’s persistence in daily practice, year after year. It happens because Jodie sets the bar high and expects my daughter to reach for it. And so she does. Her violin experience at ESMA teaches her discipline and responsibility and raises her self-confidence more than maybe anything else in her life.”
— Leslie Pelinka

“My daughter and I have been attending ESMA’s baby notes class since my daughter was 6 months old. I cannot express enough how much this class has brightened our lives. The music we sing in class is incorporated into our daily lives and routines. I even catch my husband singing the songs to our daughter regularly. My daughter’s face just lights up when she hears the songs. We have also established friendly relationships with many of the other parents and children in class. We plan to attend for years to come!”
— Liz and Elsie (12 months)

“My 5-year-old son has been enrolled at ESMA for about 9 months. Violin study in the Suzuki method is dependent on whole family involvement and real team work with your teacher(s); violin becomes a real part of your lifestyle. We have really enjoyed working with both of the teachers at ESMA and they are very supportive of the whole process of learning violin.

“It has not always been easy to encourage a preschooler to practice his instrument, but Jodie continually thinks of games and techniques to keep his violin study light and fun! When he struggles with a piece, he has learned that if he works on it a little bit every day, he gets better at it every day. I love watching him feel proud of his successes! It has taught him that if you work on it a bit every day, you can be anything you want to be or do anything you want to do…. this is a very valuable life lesson!

“He really enjoys group lessons and playing with the other children – it really encourages him to work harder and he loves the music mind games. I couldn’t be happier with my decision to enroll him at ESMA.”
— Shelly Galvin

“My son loves coming to Little Notes. We even use the songs at home and other places, sometimes in unexpected ways. For example, singing ‘Michael Finnegan’ is the only way we get through diaper changes right now, and ‘Humpty Dumpty’ just helped us weather some rough moments on an airplane!”
— Amy Sage

“For years, Jodie St. Clair has been my daughter’s guide to the world of the violin. Jodie seeks to inspire instead of tugging or expecting. When L. was meandering, not fully applying herself to the Suzuki repertoire, Jodie interested her in things “on side roads”—Irish fiddle, composing, and the differing chord structures and scales of various musical genre. Then, when L. wanted to speed up and cover some ground quickly to meet an audition goal, Jodie offered appropriate leadership and encouragement to get her there. This, to me, is how you grow a child in music.”
— Ellen W., Eugene

“Jodie has a wonderful way with children. She explains things in ways that they understand and has lots of engaging ideas for practice. My children (ages 5 and 7) love her friendly, approachable manner. As a parent, I also appreciate how clearly she sets out goals and exercises for each week. She has great skill in helping families through the inevitable ups and downs in motivation.

“My children love group class. I would definitely recommend that parents make attendance at group class a priority. The social experience of making music with other children is terrifically motivating, and the group class has musical benefits as well. It introduces the children to ensemble playing and helps them explore dynamics and other musical variations on review pieces.”
— Julie Hessler

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