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Hammers and Keys
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What is
the ESTA Foundation certificate
for Teachers (Cft) 

This course is currently available for teachers based in

North America, China, Hong Kong and South East Asia,

who teach piano or strings.

It is designed by Bill Thomson (distinguished musician, teacher and former ABRSM Hong Kong and Singapore Development Executive) and Professor Laura Ritchie (Professor of Learning and Teaching at University of Chichester) and taught face-to-face by experienced mentors.


This course is delivered bi-lingually (with resident experienced musician interpreters) and covers the principles of teaching. It is suitable for new, aspiring teachers of piano and strings, as well as those experienced teachers who work in isolation and who would benefit from interacting with colleagues.


The course consists of 6 full study days (0900-1800hrs) with the Course Leader, and mentors drawn from the ESTA mentor panel. Minimum requirements for enrolment are a pass in Grade 8 Piano from ABRSM or another recognised examination board and minimum age is 18 years of age.


This course will provide skills and knowledge, as well as a stepping stone for those with plans to take Teaching Diplomas. Equally, it will provide refreshment and new approaches for experienced teachers.


The Course Leader and mentors are British trained, Western music educators who have many years’ experience in supporting music teachers across South East Asia.


Assessment will be based on one 1,500 word written assignment (in English or Chinese) at the mid-way point of the course. Study topics such as: creative teaching processes; methodology; psychology of teaching; examination preparation and ABRSM examination repertoire; improvisation and ensemble playing are all included in this unique course.


The course is validated by University of Chichester and the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, UK.

Piano Keyboard
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