Celia Waterhouse – Piano and Music Teacher
A flexible approach with children and adults
Qualified piano tuition from a Kodály-trained teacher
Lesson times by arrangement: daytimes, after-school, evenings
I have over 30 years’ experience as a piano teacher. I enjoy working with both children and adults, at all stages from beginner to Grade 8 level. My approach is very practical. With beginners, singing forms an important part of every lesson, along with activities to develop the sense of rhythm and pulse. Repertoire is learned and assimilated through practical activities such as singing and rhythm-clapping, in preparation for learning to play the music on the piano.
Listening, developing practical skills, musical knowledge and awareness, understanding the score, and helping students to get ‘inside the music’ and play musically, continue to be important aspects of my teaching at all stages. With adults and pupils who have begun lessons with another teacher, I aim to build on the skills and knowledge the pupil already has, while gradually introducing new ideas and techniques which are important for their progress.
I have written teaching materials for piano beginners, inspired by my Kodály training. My Solfa Piano Book is a holistic singing-based approach to learning the piano, where practical musicianship and solfa singing are an integral part of the learning process. Musicianship activities develop the pupil’s fundamental skills and understanding, and the songs provide the first repertoire for playing on the piano.
I have also written My Solfa Recorder Book for recorder beginners, with a musicianship programme suitable for class music teaching.
Most pupils have a half-hour piano lesson every week during term-time. Pupils working beyond Grade 5 often have 45 minute lessons. Some young beginners enjoy shared lessons, and this gives flexible opportunities for family sessions or small musicianship groups.
I use my own teaching materials, My Solfa Piano Books, with many beginners.
Younger pupils usually spend quite a lot of their lesson time on singing and musicianship activities, as they also need to do in their practice time at home. As their musical understanding develops, as well as finger strength and co-ordination, more lesson time can be spent playing the instrument.
As well as teaching children and teenagers, I work with adults, some new to music and the piano, and some resuming or continuing piano studies. Adults usually prefer to attend fortnightly or every three weeks rather than weekly. Some adult students also have musicianship lessons.