Joanna has been nominated for “Music Teacher of the Year”!

“In the age of anxiety, Joanna Garcia is the remedy. The word inspirational is the first that comes to mind when thinking about Joanna and her piano teaching. She embodies everything you would hope for in a teacher and much more. 

According to Psychologist John Gottman, it takes five positive comments, showing understanding and support, to be able to delete a single negative comment that has a tinge of contempt, hostility or unhealthy criticism.  I would strongly argue that this ratio changed significantly following the pandemic and herein lies Joanna’s super power. Joanna believes wholeheartedly in each of her students and builds up their self-esteem and confidence through unconditional and unrestricted positive regard.  At a time where anxiety levels and mental health problems are truly worrying in our students as well as teachers, Joanna’s genuine caring and joyfulness seems to be in stark relief. Joanna’s approach feels fresh and inviting, reigniting energy, ambition, productivity and positivity in all who get caught up in her orbit, helping others remember a part of themselves that seems to have been missing in action as a result of the pandemic.  She is leading the charge towards a more positive future based on human connectedness, musical passion and a desire to promote outstanding pedagogy.  

She has a vast and ever-increasing reach thanks to her willingness to share her skills and knowledge through social media channels. Her influence therefore is growing and her mission is to help piano teachers and students to continue to grow and learn. All her students have huge admiration for her skills and professionalism both as a highly accomplished pianist, but also as an extremely experienced teacher, having worked in primary and secondary education for 17 years prior to returning to piano teaching.

Joanna’s mission has expanded over the last few years, but it all began with a youtube video on how to play Baby Shark - How to annoy your parents - Baby Shark tutorial - YouTube, which racked up 5.7k views.  Joanna feels compelled to help find fun ways to encourage engagement in music.  

During the Covid pandemic, Joanna became more acutely aware of the importance of those weekly piano lessons for consistency whilst schools were not open. It continues to be apparent how important it has been to have lasting trust in the relationships and attachments those students have developed with private music teachers.  Joanna kept finding ways to promote learning, launching a piano lesson subscription service, with non-real time piano lessons as well as live online lessons. 

Joanna’s piano school grew significantly and she expanded to employ 5 teachers who had shared values.  She now boasts a studio which supports students across the UK, Europe, Middle East and the US, which shows that she is also able to break down cultural boundaries and differences in pedagogical backgrounds. She uses this reach to connect people through group practice sessions and group performances online or in person.  She holds regular performances at local cafes, supporting music in the community and building community around her school.

This year in particular, Joanna has been driven to share her desire to raise standards of piano teaching through her Facebook page, Joanna Garcia Piano School, where 5.5k followers support her school’s ethos that “it’s not what it should be, but what it could be”.  There are an increasing number of music teachers that follow the page and who have reported that the blogs and teaching ideas that can be found there, support and change their teaching for the better.  Joanna also started a TikTok account with the drive to share piano practice tips, piano teaching hacks and understanding of music.  It has grown to 14.5kfollowers and it is a medium that really speaks to the generation of primary and secondary student pianists.  The ‘music theory made simple’ videos in particular are very popular as well as the music appreciation videos where you can experience Joanna’s absolute passion for music.  Joanna now works with at least 20 piano teachers across the UK as a piano teacher and pedagogy coach.  This allows her unique approach to spread far and wide to ever more students.  She has recently been appointed as the Curious Ambassador for the Curious Piano Teachers, who have a shared mission to improve the standards and professionalism of piano teaching and enthuse teachers and students to be more curious, have fun and keep learning.”
-  Genevieve Frost 

I started taking piano lesson at school at the age of 12. I steadily worked my way through grade after grade until I started working on grade 6. This is when I switched Piano teachers- partly because due to travel time, but also because my learning wasn’t getting anywhere. In the following 2 years I probably learned as much as I had in the previous 6. I found a genuine pleasure in playing piano, so practicing at the end of the day became a reward rather than a chore. Joanna and I aren’t working on grades anymore, we pick pieces that address areas/skills that I want to work on and go from there. Joanna is incredibly good at reacting to my needs and discovering areas of piano playing that I wasn’t even aware of that I would enjoy or that I would be good at. I’m grateful for all Joanna has taught me in respects to piano playing and for turning my music “career” around. However, it would be wrong of me not to mention the things Joanna has taught me, which indirectly have something to do with music. In her lessons she opens doors which allow me to express and loose myself in music. Despite the fact, that I no longer live in the UK our weekly lessons are filled with fun and energy and are always something to look forward to. I could honestly not wish for a better piano teacher.” - Ute Schmitgen
I would like to thank Joanna for her inspirational piano lessons. As a music teacher myself, I love the enthusiasm she brings to well prepared, focused and fun sessions each week. My daughter looks forward to Monday afternoon and always thoroughly enjoys her time with Joanna. Not only does she work on the fundamentals and towards grades, but the attention to technique and improvisation also gives a great all-round musical foundation. ” - Susan Eames
Joanna Garcia is the best piano teacher I have had; her musical ability to be able to play even the most complicated phases a sight and break them down into bite size learnable chunks is immensely valuable. She has all the musical qualification one could ask a teacher to have. Her approach, maybe it is her primary school teaching experience, is so supportive, understanding and very pupil focused that has led me to always feel I have achieved and feeling positive after a lesson. To add a little bit more about her specific pupil focus, I am dyslexic, really struggled with school and symbol/digit processing, short term memory and self-confidence. Joanna understood this and helped by colour coding chords changes and demonstrating hand and finger sequences. I love classic piano and (I would say) most classical piano teachers would never dream of breaking music down like this. Joanna was the reason I was able to pass my grade 6 piano and go to university to study Creative Music and Technology, of course I needed to put the work in to, but I truly believe I would not have got there without this specific and tailored method.” - Phil Shooter
I love my piano lessons so much and I'm sure your bright and sunny personality is a big part of that. It attracts people to you.” - Shelagh Green
My son attends piano lessons with Joanna weekly, and he loves them!!! it's difficult to get him to enjoy anything that's not his tablet, but Joanna makes it so much fun and is brilliant at building up confidence!! I'm so glad Ethan has started this journey with Joanna, I can't praise her enough!!” - Tracy Howorth