St. Margaret Primary School announces expanded strings program for students
BUZZARDS BAY, Mass. — Karin Loewen truly believes “that music is a gift that all children have access to and when it is introduced early it becomes as natural to them as a first language.”
Thus, she learned to play the cello using the Suzuki method, which focuses on playing by ear first. This teaching methodology is ideal for young students who usually are able to play an instrument even before they can read.
Loewen is in her second year of leading a strings program for the students at St. Margaret Primary School in Buzzards Bay, where even children who begin lessons as young as preschool and kindergarten have been successful. This program is part of an all-school Suzuki Program that continues onto St. Francis Xavier Preparatory School and St. John Paul II High School in Hyannis with a total of 27 students participating in all three schools.
Private Suzuki violin and cello lessons are available at St. Margaret Primary as well as a group class every Friday. The group class meets during the school day and the private lessons are after school so that parents are able to attend lessons with their children. Parental involvement is vital to students’ success at this young age.
“My favorite part about teaching is getting to know each individual child,” Loewen said. “I love the challenge of figuring out how each specific mind works so I can cater to every child’s style of learning. It is so exciting to see the joy on their faces when they learn something new and I am happy to be a part of each child’s development as they learn not only to enjoy music, but get to experience the satisfaction of putting time and energy into a skill and being able to do it well.”
Richard Fish, Performing Arts Director said: “I am blessed that my children attend St. Margaret Primary and can participate in high level instrumental lessons as a part of the school. The Suzuki Method provides an unparalleled opportunity for young students to progress joyfully on string instruments because it captures the aptitude of the young learner where they are, developmentally speaking. Parental involvement, being central to the success of this methodology, also provides the opportunity to bring parent and child together.”
Christopher Keavy, president of St. John Paul II, St. Francis Xavier Prep and St. Margaret Primary, added: “The strings program, under Mrs. Loewen’s capable leadership, has grown to be a great source of pride at the school. Students develop precision, attentiveness, and genuine performance skills. No wonder our older students have auditioned for and been accepted to regional music festivals such as Southeast Districts and All-Cape. And we’re happy to see participation grow each year.”
Karin Loewen is the instructor at all three school locations. She holds a Bachelor of Music in Cello Performance from Wheaton College Conservatory of Music in Illinois and has been teaching Suzuki lessons since 1997. She also has a home studio in Barnstable and runs a week-long summer strings camp in Brewster called the Cape Cod Summer String Tune-Up.
For more information about St. Margaret Primary School, call 508-759-2213 or visit www.smrsbb.org.