FAQ’s About Our Violin Course (Step Into Strings)

If your child has always been interested in playing the violin but you still have some questions regarding the Step Into Strings course and what it practically looks like, below are some frequently asked questions that can hopefully guide you to your next steps.

Please feel free to reach out if you have any more questions that aren’t answered here.

1) Is this course only for 5-12 year olds?

No!  The course is designed to teach the fundamentals of the violin which are useful for any age wanting to learn the violin.  We have added some visuals that make it child-friendly, but the basics of violin are the same for any age.

This course would be a perfect course to do together as a parent and child!

2) How much time is needed to get through the course?

The course is designed as a 6 week course with each week containing 4 lessons, for a total of 24 lessons. If a child is persistent and sets aside 30 minutes a day, 4 days a week, to commit to practicing and working through the modules, they can anticipate to be finished within 6 weeks.  Of course this can always be lengthen by doing half a lesson a day which would lengthen the course to 8-10 weeks.

The beauty of this course is that you can do it on your own time! The time frame is not important.  Rather, taking time to do each lesson correctly will be much more beneficial to the student!

3) What materials will I need? 

In addition to the ‘Step Into Strings’ course book (releasing May 4, 2022) you will need the following:

  • A violin and bow that are sized correctly
  • A music stand
  • Rosin and a shoulder rest

All of these items (besides the course book!) can be purchased or rented at a local music store.

4) What happens if I don’t understand a concept?

While I have done my very best to walk through each new concept as simply as possible, you may still feel stuck or confused at some point in the course. If you do find yourself not understanding a concept, I suggest that you first try backing up a little in the lesson, re-watch the videos and re-read the directions and see if it clicks!  

If you still don’t understand, there are two ways you can reach out for help: 

  • I am available to chat through any questions that come up through my Signal account. This contact info will be provided with the Step Into Strings course book.  There, we will be able to communicate via free (and safe!) messaging or audio.
  • Jump on the My Homegrown Symphony Support Group on Facebook and ask away!  I check this group regularly. 

5) How much will I be able to play by the end of the course?

By the end of the six week course (or whenever you are finished) you will:

  • Be able to play over a dozen simple songs on the violin
  • Know almost all the notes in first position - about two octaves worth of notes
  • Have a firm understanding of note names
  • All the main note values and rest values will be covered
  • Some simple musical markings such as p, f, repeat symbol, time signature and the treble clef
  • Students will know how to both clap rhythms and play songs on the violin
  • All the parts of the violin and bow will be known well
  • Students will be taught how to hold the bow with the thumb under the frog. - for older students, I’ve included a challenge to begin holding the bow properly around the grip
  • We would have started the concept of ear training

6) Will the course book be available in both digital and hard copy format?

Yes, the course book will be available for purchase at www.myhomegrownsymphony.com in both digital and hard copy versions.

If you purchase the digital copy, you can either use it from a screen or send it to your favourite print shop to have printed. You can alternatively print it at home.

If you purchase the hard copy format, the copy should arrive within a weeks time. It will be printed on good quality paper and spiral bound for easy use.

I strongly encourage students to have a printed copy, as it is easier to see the notes in a printed format than a digital.  Regardless of which version you purchase, be sure to have a device close by in order to play the videos that correspond with the teaching time.

7) Can more than one child use this course?

YES! A family may want to use it together with multiple children or a parent, so please go ahead and use it within your family only. 

9) Can I share this resource with others? 

No. Small businesses like my own would not be able to exist if our work was shared widely with others.  I would ask you not share this resource with another person outside of your immediate family. Rather, I’d love it if you would direct them to our website where they can purchase their own copy. Thank you!

10) Will I be able to play along with an accompaniment track if I’ve learned a song well?

Yes, I have included piano accompaniment tracks that you can use to play along with once you have practiced your part well enough.  Use these tracks as a “challenge” and once you’ve learned all the songs, put on a concert!

 11) Does a parent need to participate in the course with their student?

This depends on the age of your child.  If they are between the ages 5-10, they will likely need some extra help reading the directions and guiding them during the process. Once they are able to read and understand directions on their own, they are likely ready to do the course on their own as well.

12) What is the price of the course?

The price of the course is $79 USD. It includes 24 lessons of material, book recommendations, information on how to size the violin, set up the violin, tune the violin, piano accompaniment tracks and dozens of tutorial videos to help with concepts.  

It also includes access to my Signal account and/or Facebook support group so that anyone can ask a question via messaging, audio or picture. My desire is to be a support to you and not to leave you hanging!

If you were to take private or group lessons your cost for 24 lessons would be over $600, so this course is hopefully a very affordable option for you and your family. 

13) Do you offer refunds if the course doesn’t work for me?

No, unfortunately I don’t offer refunds on either the digital or hard copy of this course. I understand that sometimes we aren’t in the right season of life to take something challenging on. That’s ok! If you’ve given the course a good chance but still don’t resonate with it, put it aside and come back to it a few weeks or months later. You may find then that you are ready to learn the violin!

 14) What is the next step once I’ve finished the course and want to continue learning?

Once you’ve mastered the course, know that this is just the beginning of learning the violin!  There is so much more to learn!

I recommend looking for a local teacher.  Weekly or bi-weekly in-person lessons are the best way to continue on for continued growth and accountability. 

If you are in a rural area where violin teachers are hard to find, reach out to me and I can recommend some fantastic teachers that offer online lessons.

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