Home Piano Lessons in the Crouch End, Muswell Hill and Finsbury Park vicinity
Hello there, I'm Alvin.
I am a piano teacher offering home piano lessons.
I travel to Crouch End, Hornsey, Muswell Hill, Islington, Finsbury Park, Highgate and Wood Green. The range of postcodes I cover includes N4, N5, N6, N8, N10, N17, N19 and N22.
I teach you to play adaptations of well-known music. I cover genres such as classical, pop, rock, anime, metal and jazz. The music I use in lessons is familiar, current, and at a suitable level of difficulty.
I also prepare students for graded practical examinations and teach song-writing and composition.
I have fifteen years' experience, and have full and current DBS clearance.
Why Learn the Piano With Me?
You learn positively, with music tailored to your abilities.
We work from music that you can play and move on to more difficult repertoire as your skills and concentration improve. The focus is positive, on what you can do and what you can aim for.
I develop your current piano skills so you can continually play harder, impressive-sounding music.
You get to play music you like.
Piano playing requires co-ordination of six or seven tasks, and it is always reassuring and satisfying to know you are playing the correct notes.
Playing songs you are familiar with also helps with improve the reading of musical notation, because you have already have an idea of what the music should sound like, and hence know what the written notes, rhythmic symbols and expression marks are trying to convey.
In my own time, I write out and arrange your favourite songs at a suitable level of difficulty for you to play, at no extra charge to you.
Do you know any other piano teacher who does that on a regular basis?
I charge reasonable rates and am flexible.
My rates vary depending on your location, but they are comparable to rates charged by local music services for children's piano lessons in schools. The current rate charged by Haringey Music Service is £32.00 per hour for the academic year 2017-18.
In some cases - such as when siblings have lessons, and if I'm already in your area - I charge the school lesson rate, or less !
I teach in areas such as Crouch End, Hornsey, Finsbury Park, Muswell Hill and Wood Green, and my travel costs are shared among students. Please contact me to ask - my rates are frequently lower than most teachers who do home visits.
You have control over the timing.
I visit your home to give piano lessons, which means you have a great degree of control over various factors. The first is the timing.
If you are considering piano lessons for a child, it would be good beforehand to know that piano lessons in school may sometimes be timetabled over lunch time (unfortunately, music teachers are paid an hourly rate so it works to their advantage to timetable lessons as closely as possible). If you have a child signed up for piano lessons in school, they may either have to miss a bit of lunch time, and make up for a bit of missed academic time if they are pulled out to attend piano lessons timetabled during these times. Your child may also have to remember to turn up for lessons of their own accord as these will not be made up if missed.
The latter point is especially true if they are in secondary school, because music tutors are not expected to fetch students out of classes to do piano lessons. Secondary school students have piano lessons on a rotating timetable so they do not miss the same academic lesson, and have to come out of different lessons, which may be difficult for them to remember, or they may not be let out by class teachers because they may be doing an important science experiment, having a test, or a supply teacher unfamiliar with instrumental lesson procedures may not let them out to attend their lessons. Choosing a piano teacher that visits your home means you have a lesson at a time that works for you.
And what if the piano lesson is for yourself, a working adult? I work around your schedule and try to find mutually convenient times, which may or may not be on the same day every week. I have taught junior doctors who worked shifts, professionals who travel frequently, and artistes who have had to carve out piano lesson times amidst rehearsals and shows.
You have control over the setting.
Besides the timing, you also have control over the level of background noise. Considering the piano teacher in your child's school? Piano lessons in schools may be timetabled over lunch or break times, which means that not only might your child feel resentful over missing out on playtime, there is a lot of noise coming from the outside which may impact on concentration and ability to focus.
You also have control over where you site the piano. In one school where I was a visiting piano teacher, the only place for the piano was in a shared room, which meant the children having piano lessons had to try to focus while some learning support lessons were going on in the other part of the room, which is not ideal. In another school I teach at, the piano room is set within the main music classroom, so there is always the sound of keyboards, pianos, guitars and drum kits outside the practice room. Piano lessons interfere with class lessons, and vice versa.
By having me visit your home, you have control over the teaching location and you get a piano teacher who works along with how you want to set it out. You arrange things the way you like them and I work with that. Furthermore you can manage the level of extraneous noise and set out the best conditions for yourself or your child - whoever it is that is having the lesson - to focus.
You get better, direct communication.
Peripatetic music teachers often teach in various schools during the day, as well as privately after school hours. If your child is signed up for piano lessons in school, the only time you may have an opportunity to see the piano teacher would be at parents evenings, which instrumental teachers may not be obliged to or may not be able to attend. (They are not necessarily paid to attend such meetings, or may be teaching.) Hence there is little opportunity to discuss with teachers about progress, and for many, the only contact between teacher and parent is an annual report. Sometimes there may also be a student lesson notebook where you can record messages but you would have to wait a week for a reply.
Having piano lessons privately with me means we can discuss progress and areas of concern immediately after the lesson. The feedback loop is instant, ever-ready, and you can even sit in on the lessons and observe your child's lesson if you wish. It's your house!
I have no cancellation fees.
I am particularly understanding if you need to cancel at short notice (e.g. due to child illness). Or maybe you've suddenly remembered about another appointment - as long as I've not appeared at your doorstep, that's fine!
Other music schools or tutors may require you to give 24 hours' notice for cancelling a lesson. I don't - no one plans an illness in advance! - and I understand that life sometimes just gets a little bit complicated for our liking!
Need a recap?
Music you like
A positive learning process
Control over timing and setting
No cancellation fees, no contract, no notice period!
If you are considering lessons either for yourself or your child, please contact me via one of the following ways:
by email: email@example.com
by text or phone: 0795 203 6516
In order for me to comprehensively answer your query, it is always useful for me to know the following:
(i) Your location (road name and/or postcode is sufficient);
(ii) The kind of piano you have (either upright, digital or electronic keyboard);
(iii) If you have been learning the piano elsewhere before, and for how long (if at all); and
(iv) The days and times you might possibly be free to have lessons on.
Blog Snippets - more in the Posts section!
Occasionally I am asked by friends about their young children starting piano lessons, and when would be the best time for the child to do so.
Most music services recommend that children who wish to start piano lessons do so from Year 2 onwards, although bearing in mind this could result in a recommended age range varying nearly over a year - a child born in early September would be eleven months older than a child born in August, despite both being in Year 2 - a better benchmark might be to start from about age six and a half.
Any sooner before that, and the child's hands might not have grown enough to comfortably accommodate a range of five notes, or possess enough strength to depress a note with enough conviction.
Concentration is also a factor. A young child may not be able to concentrate for more than twenty or thirty minutes at a time.
But even then age is not always an accurate gauge of ability or maturity, considering children mature at different rates. So how can we gauge if children are ready to embark on formal music lessons, if not by age or school year?
I sometimes answer that the a young child is ready to begin formal lessons when they have started to ride a bicycle confidently and can be trusted to ride without any adult intervention.
That is not a flippant answer. Riding a bicycle involves the coordination of several actions - your feet have to pedal, you have to make fine adjustments to your balance while the back of your arms and shoulders contract or relax in order to control the handlebars in order to determine the direction of the bicycle. It is not dissimilar to the coordination of muscle groups in playing the piano, although it may be argued that the action of playing the piano requires perhaps a slightly different form of specificity in the fingers.
The coordination of different muscle groups is only part of the equation. Another part of the equation is the interpretation of visual data and translating it into an action by controlling the muscle groups.
Imagine if a child is riding a bicycle on the pavement. What happens if they see a pedestrian coming towards them? Without stopping, are they able to gauge the intended direction of the approaching person, and chart out a path to navigate around, without losing balance?
And if the intended path of the bicycle is slightly inclined, or cobbled, is the child able to assimilate the physical from the muscles, pass on the information to the brain, and in return receive more mental directions to fine tune the existing movement? Are they able to do what scientists define as "making feedback part of the mental loop"?
And can the child physically do all that - maintain the control of the bicycle while managing that slight feeling of apprehension and hesitancy at having to do some mental calculations and estimation?
In aiming for fluency in playing the piano, your eyes have to scan fractionally ahead of what your fingers are playing at the moment, so that by the time the fingers press the keys, the visual information - what notes each hand has to play, which notes go together, how loudly or softly they have to be played and with what kind of touch - all that information has been processed by the mind and a plan of action has been considered and communicated to the muscle groups; all in the short frame of time.
When is the best age for a child to learn to ride a bike? Every child starts learning at a different age, and some take to it better and learn more quickly than others, but there's nothing to say a child should start at a certain age or attain a certain level by a certain age. Every child is different and learning must be tailored to the child. And often you will see a slightly anxious parent behind, arching his our her back trying to stabilise the bike as the child pedals, offering feedback - which is sometimes not useful because the child is already struggling to process all his or her own internal feedback. The additional instructions, no matter how well-intended, also add extra external layers of information that have to be comprehended and translated into action.
So when is a child ready to start piano lessons? Perhaps if you were considering piano lessons for your child, observe how he or she is in other activities that require the same level of physical and mental coordination.
Home Piano Lessons | firstname.lastname@example.org | 0795 203 6516