Print: School of scales – Marie-Luise Dingler
Why a school of scales in the first position?
In my over 10 years of experience as a violin teacher, I have always noticed that children who practiced scales were better in everything: Sight-reading, learning new pieces, coordination, transfers, etc. Especially those students who practiced only on a minimal basis or did not show extraordinary talent. Today’s modern violin schools offer a lot of
music suitable for children, easy to learn with great playbacks and well elaborated, but scales are rarely taught and if they are, then only marginally and incomplete. Even the old masters do not introduce scales until the new positions are added.
At this point, however, the students are overwhelmed – practicing a new position and the regularities of a scale without any routine in fingers or ears makes it twice as difficult.
But practicing scales make so many things easier:
• A routine in motor skills quickly develops – actually the most important thing for playing an instrument.
• A feeling of major and minor is developed – nowadays this is not a matter of course, because singing together at
school and in the family is steadily decreasing.
• The student and teacher have time to correct postural errors during a routine sequence of movements.
• The students learn to read notes faster and to link the note to the matching finger and tone.
• The student develops his pitch faster and learns to pay attention to intonation.
• The meaning of accidentals is recognized and learned faster.
• All in all, the learning speed and transfer performance improves.
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