Music and Performance at Blennerhasset School
Music is very important to us at Blennerhasset School. We understand its role in developing confidence, oracy and listening skills as well as the core value of developing a love of music and becoming a musician.
All children in school work with our specialist music teacher, Helen Teasdale (Helen) on a weekly basis and experience rhythm and rhyme work, composition, music history, performance skills, knowledge and use of different instruments and so much more.
Helen has her own company, Music Makers and runs sessions with our younger children in school.
Throughout the school year we put together a range of performances for families to share with us. Harvest Festival, Nativity and Winter Performances, Singing for the community, Carols in the playground as well as a large-scale musical production for KS2 at the end of the summer term.
We also offer our children enrichment experiences such as African drumming and dancing with Zozo, A visiting saxophone quartet (Borealis) through our links with Sunbeams Trust and the chance to perform in Manchester for the Young Voices Choir.
Within the weekly song choices, we explore movement, rhythm, dynamics, tempo and pitch. Songs are chosen to represent each of these as well as to develop recall of lyrics and melody building the children’s repertoire and memory from previous lessons. Songs are taught with ‘call and response’ aiding confidence and progression. A key element is developing listening skills not just for learning lyrics and melody, but also for following instruction and identifying props or instruments through touch, sound or description which are then associated with a particular song.
For example, ‘A Rocket is Fast’ - describing the feel of the prop bag, the children questioning what is inside and what song we could use the props for; exploring rhythm and tempo through the contrasts within the song - fast, slow, singing in quaver beats and then minims, accented to smooth phrases; use of phonics within the lyrics and sounds, making an individual choice of which word to use when returning the prop (scarves) to the bag and emphasising the sound - squish or squash - developing each child’s confidence to find and use their own voice.