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BUSINESS SPOTLIGHT: Lawrence opens on a strong note

Colleen Lawrence plays with a group of students studying the violin. Lawrence opened Growing-N-Music at 316 Liberty St., Morris.
Colleen Lawrence plays with a group of students studying the violin. Lawrence opened Growing-N-Music at 316 Liberty St., Morris.

• BUSINESS: Growing-N-Music with Colleen Lawrence

316 Liberty St., Morris, IL

• PHONE NUMBER: 815-685-5988


• HOURS OF OPERATION: Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays group music classes.

• Newborn through 1 years of age 8:30-9 a.m. and 1-1:30.

• 1-3 years of age 9-9:30 and 1:30-2.

• 3-5 years of age 9:30-10 and 2-2:30.  

• A sibling class will be offered to those parents with kids in different age groupings. This will be from 12:30-1. 

Enrollment will be limited to 10 students and their parents per class. String lessons are scheduled on an individual basis. 

• OWNER:  Colleen Lawrence    

WHAT IS YOUR SPECIALTY: Growing-N-Music offers group music instruction for babies through five years of age. The children sing, dance and play instruments with their parents. Through music, children will learn the necessary skills needed for school and life.

Growing-N-Music also offers Suzuki Violin instruction for students as young as three years old. Japanese violinist, Shinichi Suzuki realized that children all over the world learn to speak their native language with ease. He began to apply the basic principles of language development to the learning of music, and called his method the mother-tongue approach.

What is the Suzuki Method? Learning with other children: in addition to private lessons, children participate in regular group lessons and performances at which they learn from and are motivated by each other. Parent Involvement: as when a child learns to talk, parents are involved in the musical learning of their child. They attend lessons with the child and serve as home teachers during the week. Parents work with the teacher to create an enjoyable learning environment.

Early beginning: the early years are crucial for developing mental processes and muscle coordination. Listening to music should begin at birth; formal training may begin at age three or four, but it is never too late to begin.

Listening: children learn words after hearing those spoken hundreds of times by others. Listening to music every day is important, especially listening to pieces in the Suzuki repertoire so the child knows them correctly and quickly.

Repetition constant repetition is essential in learning to play an instrument; children do not learn a word or piece of music and then discard it. They add it to their vocabulary, or repertoire, gradually using it in new and more sophisticated ways. Encouragement, as with language, the child’s effort to learn an instrument should be met with sincere praise and encouragement. Each child learns at their own rate, building on small steps so that each one can be mastered.

Graded repertoire, pieces in the Suzuki repertoire are designed to present technical problems to be learned in the context of music, not dry technical exercises. Delayed reading, children learn to read after their ability to talk has been well established.

Children should develop basic technical competence on their instruments before being taught to read music.

• WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO TELL OUR READERS ABOUT YOUR BUSINESS: “Every child grows; everything depends on the teacher.” Come and grow through music with Colleen Lawrence and Growing-N-Music. It is never too early to enroll your child in music, something that will develop life-long skills.

When young children engage in music in age-appropriate, socially accepting environments, they benefit at many levels. They gain the phonological processing, spoken language and comprehension skills that are the foundation of reading. They build the spatial-temporal and reasoning skills required for math, science and engineering. They develop social and emotional skills that are essential for school readiness.

By moving, dancing and playing simple instruments, children improve their gross and fine motor skills.
The youngest student enrolled in lessons at this time is in first grade and the oldest is a senior in high school.

• WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THE FUTURE?  I would love to see the arts grow in Grundy County and it begins at a very young age.  Come and enroll your infant in music classes today to begin a lifetime of love for music.

Not an infant? No worries, start your child in music today and watch how music can change their lives and improve skills at school. I would love to see a youth orchestra where students have the opportunity to learn the violin, viola or cello. This group is currently open to students in first and second grade.

Colleen and her string colleagues are available for elegant music for weddings, funerals and parties.

• ABOUT THE OWNER: Colleen began her studies at the age of three in the Aurora Suzuki Violin program. She went on to major in music education at Illinois State University.  She is certified in the Suzuki String Method with emphasis on the violin repertoire.

Colleen has been teaching for 12 years both publically and privately.  Colleen has an extensive teaching background in the orchestral setting: violins, violas, cellos, and basses. She has had years of experience as a general music teacher.

A regular performer with the Kankakee Valley Symphony Orchestra, Colleen collaborates with the Morris Community High School theatrical productions.

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