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Grandma's Kite
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Illustrations
by Karen Zethmayr

Bowing Without a Bow, Set Two

(click here for set one)

 

 

You can do these exercises with no violin in sight, to get used to steering the bow by sensing where your fingers and the bow are, not by squeezing.

Remember the points of contact: a slanted line from the tip of the pinky to the middle knuckle of the index finger.

photo of hand practicing bow grip
If you have a "banana thumb"photo of hand practicing bow grip instead of a "mountain thumb," photo of hand practicing bow gripreview the beginner set with or without the eraser.


Finger Flexibility

Raise and lower the pencil by moving only the fingers. (In the beginner version you moved your wrist. Now we're working on flexible fingers, so the whole heel of your hand stays "glued" to the table
photo of hand practicing bow grip photo of hand practicing bow grip
Don't try to do this exercise fast or to move more than a half inch. The idea is to loosen the fingers and make them springy.

photo of hand practicing bow grip
photo of hand practicing bow grip


When your fingers get used to an easy springiness, and you can do the motion in mid air, your knuckles will look alternately like mountains and flat land, as above.

Take a break; shake out your hands, massage your fingers.
Now think again about how you're holding the bow.

 


Everything looks nice and round, right? The bow is nestled into just the right creases in your fingers and not clutched in a death grip?

Good. (If not, check out Set One.)

photo of hand practicing bow grip
  photo of hand practicing bow grip

Now you're ready to let go with one finger.

What? Let go? Go ahead, try it. It's only a pencil.

 

 

And keep going, letting go

with

each

photo of hand practicing bow grip
  photo of hand practicing bow grip

 

finger

  in photo of hand practicing bow grip
  photo of hand practicing bow grip

turn....

until you get to the thumb.

Then let go with the thumb.
You can do it if you're still holding the bow gently. If you squeeze, none of this will work.

  If you're guiding the bow instead of clutching it, you should be able to turn your hand over with your thumb still away from the stick. photo of hand practicing bow grip
 

If you would like to receive notification as new Suzuki resources are added to this site, you can send an email to grandma@grandmaskite.com. Your email will not be sold, shared, traded, or used for any other purpose than that which you requested. As it turns out, I have been adding a topic in a parent letter about once a month for my own Suzuki families.

Other Suzuki resources on Grandma's Kite:

Pencil exercises, set one for bow hold
Pencil exercises, set two for bow hold
One Little Elephant (left finger strength and flexibility)
Four Little Elephants Jumping on a Web (left finger naming, strength and flexibility)
Left hand number card "pick up" game
"Home built" violins and ways to use them in group sessions
Reading readiness game "Who Ran Away?"

Reading readiness game "Rhythm Flash "
"Reading Readiness in Music
"

Supplementary Music and Midis

Twinkle Rag – a twinkle variation with a new twist on half of the rhythm in Variations A and D. Same four sixteenth notes in a ragtime setting

Daisy Daisy uses a three four twist on "Mississippi without the hot dog." The whole accompaniment is open D and G. The song and bass line can be played as a violin / 'cello duet or on the piano.

For more information on the Monroe Street Fine Arts Center Suzuki program, see Monroe Street Fine Arts Center, http://www.msfac.org/ or email grandma@grandmaskite.com.

For more information on Middleton School of Performing Arts, see http://msopa.net or email grandma@grandmaskite.com.

 
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